Seattle, WA – The University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism today announced NWCN, the 24-hour Northwest news channel, has won a 2013 Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism in the Local Cable Station category. Judges described NWCN’s 2012 “Race to the Wire” coverage as “a political junkie’s dream” and praised NWCN’s use of social media to engage viewers in conversations about local and national elections across the November. In addition, the judges credited NWCN with using innovative production techniques and providing “analysis-heavy coverage.”
NWCN produced six “Race to the Wire” half-hour specials in the spring covering every aspect of the GOP Primaries, as well as the caucuses and primaries held in each Northwest state. In the final nine weeks of the campaign, NWCN launched a series of 17 “Race to the Wire” and provided seven continuous hours of live coverage on election night. Coverage included:
- Nationally and regionally known analysts, guests, authors, and commentators.
- Updates and insight from a non-partisan polling expert as warranted.
- A live interactive show where voters joined a Google+ “hangout” to ask questions of the Washington Democratic Party chair
- A similar opportunity for viewers with questions for the Washington Republican Party chair using Facebook and Twitter.
- A voter’s guide to the Washington Governor’s race with each candidate answering the same five questions which then aired in their entirety.
“This award validates our teamwork approach to providing election coverage that truly separated us in the eyes of Northwest viewers,” said Wayne Lynch, news director of NWCN. “It’s great to see the judges’ comments reflect on our goal to provide viewers a home for balanced political coverage with both breadth and depth.”
The Walter Cronkite Award for Excellence in Television Political Journalism is awarded annually by the Norman Lear Center at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. NWCN’s parent company, Belo Corporation also won a Cronkite award for excellent in political journalism for a national television group, which includes the companies 14 stations and regional cable news channel.
NWCN is the nation’s second largest regional cable news network reaching more than 2.9 million subscribers in five Western states. NWCN is available on Comcast, DISH Network and smaller regional cable outlets.