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KRWG Public Media honored with many awards by New Mexico Press Women

This year, KRWG Public Media was honored with many awards for television, radio, digital, and student reporting in this year’s communications contest by New Mexico Press Women.

Christian Valle, KRWG Television Production Manager was awarded first-place honors in special programming for television for the documentary “Clara Belle Williams: New Mexico Pioneer in Education.” The documentary shares the inspiring life story of the first African American graduate of New Mexico State University. Valle also won honorable mention for a television segment on cooking tamales.

KC Counts, KRWG "Morning Edition" Host was awarded “Best Radio Newscast” for her November 8th newscast from last year that updated the region with election results and coverage. Counts who also serves as FM operations manager was recognized with a second-place award for hosting and producing the "Voice of the Public" call in program on immigrant advocacy that she shared with co-producer and FM engineer Mark Johnson. Counts also won honorable mention for her "Newsmakers" television interview with Las Cruces Public Schools Superintendent Ignacio Ruíz.

KRWG Public Media’s digital content won multiple awards this year. Jonny Coker, multimedia journalist at KRWG Public Media won first-place for a web feature news reporting for his coverage of the humanitarian crisis at the border. Coker was also awarded second-place for his radio news story on Virgin Galactic sending private astronauts to space for the first time. KRWG Public Media social media specialist Angelina Malone took home two first-place awards. First, her web and social media campaign for “Talkin’ Tamales”, a KRWG live FM call-in program. Malone also won first for KRWG's social media presence and second-place honors for KRWG Public Media's website.

"Intermezzo" host Leora Zeitlin won a first-place award for her two-part FM interview with national chess master Lior Lapid on chess and music. Zeitlin also took home honorable mention for an interview about "celestial music" featured by the Las Cruces Symphony.

Anthony Moreno, KRWG Content Director, and Evelyn Sandoval, former Senior Television Producer shared first-place honors for a television talk show with an episode of “Fronteras A Changing America” that featured an in-depth look at local lowrider culture and a conversation with award-winning Fronteriza author Denise Chávez.

Also, Noah Raess, KRWG Public Media Scholar took home a first-place collegiate honor for his reporting for television on border trade fueling Santa Teresa’s growth in southern New Mexico. Raess, a junior also was awarded second-place for television for his profiles feature of race car driver Drew Cassidy and won second-place in radio for his coverage of the fentanyl crisis in Las Cruces.

"Fiesta" and "Puentes" host Emily Guerra was honored for her work in radio with a second- place award for her interview on a film showcasing Holocaust Survivors in Cuba. Guerra also won third place for her Puentes interview on Latina Leadership in the borderland and an honorable mention for her interview with legendary organizer and civil rights advocate Dolores Huerta.

KRWG "All Things Considered" FM host and reporter Scott Brocato was awarded second place for his news feature on the P.A.W.S. Program, a partnership with the New Mexico Corrections Department and Action Programs for Animals. Brocato also won third-place honors for his coverage of a lawsuit filed by residents in Anthony, New Mexico to remove the mayor.

Former KRWG Television Senior Producer Andrea Vázquez won second-place honors for her television story on El Paso author Wally Mayer Cech, who recalled her childhood upbringing in Nazi Germany during WWII.

KRWG Public Media was also awarded first place as an organization. General Manager Adrian Velarde shared his joy about the organization getting recognized by New Mexico Press Women.

“These awards are a testament to our content team's dedication, talent, and commitment to producing high-quality, impactful content for the entire region," Velarde said. "This recognition reflects the collective strength of our entire team, and I'm incredibly proud of everyone's contribution."

All first-place winners in the communications contest from New Mexico Press Women are eligible to move on to a national contest where awards will be announced in June in St. Louis at the National Federation of Press Women communications conference. The NFPW announced in April that KC Counts, Angelina Malone, Noah Raess, Christian Valle, Leora Zeitlin, Jonny Coker, Anthony Moreno, and Evelyn Sandoval have all placed in the national contest.

Editor's note: This post was updated to reflect new award updates by New Mexico Press Women and the National Federation of Press Women.