WSAV-TV, the NBC affiliate serving Savannah GA / Hilton Head SC has been honored with five Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for excellence in television journalism. The announcement came Tuesday by the Radio Television Digital News Association which has been honoring outstanding achievement in electronic journalism with the Murrow Awards since 1971.
This continues an impressive trend as WSAV has been recognized with 31 Regional Murrow awards for excellence in journalism over the past seven years — as compared to two awards for all other Savannah area Television stations.
Among the honors, the prestigious Murrow Award for Overall Excellence. It’s the sixth time in the last seven years WSAV’s entire staff has been so honored for investigative, hard news, breaking news, feature and community reporting.
WSAV Anchor/ Reporter Dave Kartunen earns the Murrow for Investigative Reporting with his investigation into Congressional Gift Travel – revealing local members of congress accepting “free” travel from third party interest groups and what the trips actually benefit.
WSAV anchor/reporter Tina Tyus-Shaw and Investigator Andrew Davis share the Murrow Award for Breaking News Coverage for their treatment of the surprise retirement of former Savannah Chief of Police Willie Lovett.
WSAV Chief Investigator JoAnn Merrigan and Anchor Reporter Dave Kartunen accept the Murrow Award for Continuing Coverage – for follow up over a three month period of the problems, successes and battles that surrounded the implementation of the Affordable Health Care Act.
Finally, WSAV Photographer Art Ottimo wins the Murrow Award for Use of Video (Photojournalism) for his photo essay on the Savannah Police Memorial for officers killed in action. It’s WSAV’s fifth win in this category in the past eight years.
WSAV General Manager Deb Thompson said “It is gratifying to see our news team receive such well deserved acknowledgment — these awards are a wonderful recognition of our intense focus on Investigative and Breaking News.” WSAV took five of the thirteen awards presented in its region — a region that includes more than 30 television news organizations in cities throughout Georgia, Florida, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Regional Edward R. Murrow Award winners automatically move to the RTDNA’s national competition.