Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

WAER News & Sports Coverage Earns 12 Syracuse Press Club Awards

Katie Zilcosky/WAER News

WAER reporters and producers were awarded 12 honors from the Syracuse Press Club for work in News, Sports and Public Affairs programming.  A total of 17 different WAER staff earned awards for their superior work that aired in 2019.  Winners were announced Monday night in a Facebook Live event that took place of the SPC’s usual spring awards banquet.

First-place honors went to Katie Zilcosky in Best Human Interest Feature category for her story “Cooking Workshop to Prove Healthy Eating is Relatable and Affordable,” WAER’s Sports Staff for “Countdown to Tipoff: Pregame show for Syracuse-Virginia Basketball” for Best Sports Show, produced by JD Raucci, Jonathan Hoppe, Corey Spector and Jack McMullen.  Jenna Fink took Best Sports Story for “Syracuse Sled Hockey Opens Sport to New Participants”; and Best Spot News Story was awarded to Chris Bolt for “Child Sex Abuse Victims Get Reminder About Open Window for Old Cases Under NY Child Victims Act.” 

Syracuse University Newhouse Professor Elliott Lewis also won first place for Best News Feature for his story “Local Stories Show Realities of Biracial identity for People and Families” which aired on WAER. 

Other news awards went to Scott Willis, a second place honor in the Best Spot news category for “New Syracuse Opioid Court Aims to Help Addicts, Not Punish Them.”  Student Producer Maiya Focht teamed with Chris Bolt to take third-place in Best News Feature for "Dietary and Health Supplements: Balancing Benefit with Cautions.”  In Best Human-Interest Feature category, Chris Bolt and Tom Honan earned third place for “Woodstock Golden Anniversary Offered Musical and Spiritual Look Back.” 

WAER’s Sports Staff took second and third place honors for Best Sports Show: Tim Leonard, Corey Spector, Jack McMullen and Brendan Mortensen produced “Countdown to Kickoff: Syracuse-Clemson Football Pregame Show,” taking the second.  And third place was for Sportsnight’s “A Look Back and Ahead for Syracuse Basketball Fans: Disappointment Replaced by Hope.”  Second Place in the Best Sports Story category was Jonah Karp’s “Syracuse Basketball Player Rehabbing Injury Suffers Stroke: Gets and Gives Lessons in Life.”

(Hear Sports Staff Entries Here)

The final award of the evening for WAER was awarded to talent and producers of Syracuse Speaks, Kevin Kloss, Joe Lee, Allegra Craver, Katie Zilcosky and Chris Bolt, second place winners for “Syracuse Speaks: Engaging the Community in Climate Change Conversations.

A video of the Facebook Live presentation, presented by WAER news Director Chris Bolt, is on the Syracuse Press Club Facebook page.

Chris Bolt, Ed.D. has proudly been covering the Central New York community and mentoring students for more than 30 years. His career in public media started as a student volunteer, then as a reporter/producer. He has been the news director for WAER since 1995. Dedicated to keeping local news coverage alive, Chris also has a passion for education, having trained, mentored and provided a platform for growth to more than a thousand students. Career highlights include having work appear on NPR, CBS, ABC and other news networks, winning numerous local and state journalism awards.