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'The State We're In' Wins Excellence In Innovation Award


Journalism produced by WMFE and WUSF was honored with a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Innovation on Thursday.

The Murrow Awards are among the most prestigious broadcast awards in the United States, and winners in the regional competitions will vie for national awards to be announced later this year.

The Excellence in Innovation award was given to “The State We’re In” created with WMFE’s collaborative partner WUSF, and the national public media community engagement initiative called America Amplified.

In April 2020, the team took just two weeks to develop a Facebook Live show to reach people who might not tune into public radio stations or other traditional media, providing the community a trusted link to information at a time when most of the state and country was shut down.

For 16 consecutive weeks, The State We’re In featured in-the-moment information about coronavirus, analysis of the economic impact of the pandemic, difficult conversations about racial justice and fact-based information about voting. The conversation with experts and everyday people allowed viewers the chance to ask questions and share their experiences.

Between August and November, attention at The State We’re In shifted to the upcoming election. Those conversations focused on talking directly with voters, answering their questions and dispelling misinformation. The team also increased the sharing of “voter guide’-like information on Facebook for voters.

WMFE staff involved in this project included Digital Manager Ryan Ellison, reporter Abe Aboraya, Marketing and Communications Specialist Jenny Babcock, reporter Joe Byrnes and News Director and Host Matthew Peddie.