Sandro Monetti, Who’s The Best?, “Sandro Monetti, host of pop culture podcast Who’s the Best”
Judges’ comment Being whimsical and entertaining, Monetti is a wonderful podcast host, earning this First Place award.
2nd Gordon Cox, Variety, “Gordon Cox, Host of Variety’s Stagecraft”
3rd Vicky Moore and Dick Helton, KNX AM, “KNX Morning News”
KNX News Team, KNX AM, “Saugus High School Shooting”
Judges’ comment: This is a great example of breaking news coverage during a high-pressure event. The on-air personalities deal well with the changing event and provide clear updates to a terrifying situation.
2nd Jon Reed,USC Annenberg Radio News,“Kaiser Permanente Mental Health Care Workers Go on Strike in Pasadena”
Kerstin Zilm and Sonya Geis, KCRW, “Far from recovered: A woman’s life 1 year after Woolsey Fire”
Judges’ comment: This story was interesting, featured great sound and had solid production values.
2nd Steve Chiotakis, Christian Bordal, Ray Guarna and Sonya Geis, KCRW, “Why Do Angelenos Love Grunion Runs?”
3rd Kim Brunhuber, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, “Black Girl Hockey Club”
Carla Green, KCRW, “For many homeless Angelenos, the gym is critical to survival”
Judges’ comment: Green’s excellent use of language, descriptive writing, and sound described the similarities and contrasts between two featured people, the severity of the L.A. homeless problem, and the efforts to overcome it.
2nd Caleigh Wells, KCRW, “How to Afford LA? Get 24 Roommates”
3rd Caleigh Wells, KCRW, “Money Over Privacy: More Adults Are Living with Their Parents”
PERSONALITY PROFILE/INTERVIEW, Over 20 Minutes
Scott Feinberg, The Hollywood Reporter, “‘Awards Chatter’ Podcast— George Clooney (‘Catch 22’)”
Judges’ comment: In his first podcast, Feinberg showcases actor George Clooney’s candidness without getting in the way.
2nd Vic Gerami, The Blunt Post, “Interviewed Presidential Candidate Marianne Williamson”
3rd Jeff Goldsmith, The Q&A with Jeff Goldsmith Podcast (also Backstory Magazine), “Eighth Grade Q&A – Bo Burnham”
PERSONALITY PROFILE/INTERVIEW, Under 20 Minutes
Jackson Cantrell, Steve Chiotakis, Sonya Geis, Ray Guarna and Christian Bordal, KCRW, “Once a successful singer, Jonny Fair struggles with mental health and housing”
Judges’ comment: This absorbing piece by the KCRW staffers addresses a serious issue with an unexpected and creative twist, holding the listeners’ attention to the end.
2nd Kerstin Zilm, Steve Chiotakis, Sonya Geis, Phillip Richards and Christian Bordal, KCRW, “Mayor Max: Top Dog of Idyllwild”
3rd Steve Chiotakis, Christian Bordal, Jenna Kagel and Phil Richards, KCRW, “Celebrating the Dearly Departed with Mo Rocca”
Anna Scott, Steve Chiotakis, Sonya Geis, Phillip Richards and Christian Bordal, KCRW, “Solar Eviction”
Judges’ comment: An excellent investigative report. Made a complicated issue easy to understand and care about.
2nd Daniel Miller, Los Angeles Times, “Larger than Life”
3rd Abdullah Saaed, Steve Chiotakis, Jenna Kagel, Sonya Geis and Ray Guarna, KCRW, “Pot Seshes”
David Weinberg, KCRW, “How black men and women fought to become stunt doubles in Hollywood”
Judges’ comment: Excellent story that likely hasn’t been told as many times as it should be.
2nd Steve Chiotakis, Christian Bordal, Sonya Geis, Jenna Kagel, Ray Guarna and Amy Ta, KCRW, “Chronicling LA’s Drug Dens and Punk Rock Music of the ’80s and ’90s”
3rd Brandon Reynolds, Sonya Geis, Steve Chiotakis, Ray Guarna and Christian Bordal, KCRW, “Immersive Theater”
Susan Valot, NPR’s ‘Only A Game,’ “#VegasStrong: How Shooting Survivor Nick Robone Healed with the Help of Hockey”
Judges’ comment: Valot found a fascinating sports story about a shooting victim that she tells very well.
2nd Deborah Zara Kobylt, Deborah Kobylt LIVE, “Kathrine Switzer – Runner, Author & Public Speaker”
3rd Sarah Ko, Christian Colmenares and Hunter Patterson, USC Annenberg Media, “The K.O. Round Ep. 6: USC Student Journalists”
USE OF SOUND
Susan Valot, NPR’s “Only A Game,” “#VegasStrong: How Shooting Survivor Nick Robone Healed With The Help Of Hockey”
Judges’ comment: Valot, who also won the best sports news or feature for this excellent story, is lauded for the use of sound in this shooting survivor’s story.
2nd Matt Schrader, Peter Bawiec, Ryan Taubert, Benjamin Botkin and Elena Bawiec, Epicleff Media, “BLOCKBUSTER: George Lucas, Steven Spielberg and a 1970s Movie Revolution”
3rd Steve Chiotakis, Kathryn Barnes, Christian Bordal and Ray Guarna, KCRW, “Terminal Island: Where Cars Go to Die”
Madeleine Brand, Sarah Sweeney and Michell Eloy, KCRW, “California’s clout in the 2020 election”
Judges’ comment: A fun, spirited and informative discussion of California politics. Good choice of topics and speakers. Host helps move the discussion forward while also keeping it on track.
2nd ZaZu Lippert, Aiyonna White, Isaiah Murtaugh and Yuki Liang, USC Annenberg Radio News, “From Where We Are: From the Ashes of the Woolsey Fire, Malibu’s True Colors Shine Through”
3rd Julia Pyper, Shane Skelton and Brandon Hurlbut, Political Climate Podcast, “Greta Thunberg on the Climate Crisis, Schwarzenegger, and Shnitzel”
Jonathan Serviss, Charles Feldman, Rob Archer and Ken Charles, KNX AM, “KNX Indepth: Saugus High School Shooting”
Judges’ comment: A delicate exploration of a horrible situation. Great work in telling a story through the eyes of those who were there during this awful event.
2nd Carla Green, KCRW, “Friends in Juggalo Places”
3rd Daniel Miller, Los Angeles Times, “Larger Than Life”