The Radio Television Digital News Association of Canada’s annual awards honoured News Talk Radio with four Prairie Region awards Saturday night.
Byron MacGregor Award (Medium Market) – Best Newscast
News Talk 980 CJME won the regional award for Best Newscast for coverage of the results of the federal election in October 2015. It’s the seventh time in eight years the award has gone to CJME.
The 42nd general election saw Liberal MP Ralph Goodale and Conservative MP Andrew Scheer re-elected to represent Regina. A back-and-forth match at the polls in the Regina-Lewvan constituency saw the NDP regain ground in the Queen City. Erin Weir won a slim victory over the Conservative’s Trent Fraser.
Ron Laidlaw Award – Continuing Coverage
The award for on-going coverage went to News Talk 650 CKOM’s coverage of the wildfires that devastated northern Saskatchewan during the summer of 2015. Hundreds of northern Saskatchewan residents were evacuated from their homes – some spending more than a month at evacuation centres – as dozens of wildfires burned out of control. Army reservists were deployed to help fire crews battling the blazes. The province said the cost of the fires tallied roughly $100 million more than what had been budgeted.
Dave Rogers Award (Small/Medium Market) – Short Feature
News Talk 980 CJME was recognized for short feature reporting for Kevin Martel’s story “In Reserve-Saskatchewan’s Civilian Soldiers”.
Martel spent the weekend in the mud and snow with reservists from the Regina Rifles and other Saskatchewan detachments in the spring of 2015. Live ammo, RME (ready to eat meals) and sleeping in tents as the temperature dropped below freezing was all part of the story as Kevin tagged along for a weekend of skill sharpening at Canadian Forces Detachment Dundurn. The story profiles some of these ‘civilian’ soldiers who wait to be called out to battle or for emergency relief.
Prairie Region Lifetime Achievement Award Winner
News Talk 980 CJME news director Murray Wood was recognized for his 35 years with Rawlco Radio. Starting at age 17 as a reporter and anchor in North Battleford, Murray also worked in Calgary and Ottawa before returning to Regina as news director. Known for The Wood File, he has more than 35 RTNDA regional and national awards along with the Canadian Association of Broadcasters Gold Ribbon Award.