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Small newsroom contender KLCC wins big in 2021 Oregon SPJ Awards

Brian Bull, Patricia Zavala, Joe Moll, Tiffany Eckert
KLCC, Unsplash.com, McKenzie River Trust
Images from KLCC stories (clockwise from top L): Viribus the Phoenix sculpture in Blue River; family during COVID-19 pandemic; Chinook salmon in Elk Creek; Joe Young and daughter, Maisie; firefighter trainees doing cultural burn

KLCC is pleased to announce it has been recognized with eight Northwest Excellence in Journalism Awards in the small newsroom division from the Society of Professional Journalists.

“We’re proud of the work the KLCC news team has done over the past couple of years, despite the challenges of a continued pandemic and the relentless pace of news,” said KLCC News Director Rachael McDonald. “It means so much to have this recognition in a very competitive contest. We’re committed to public service journalism and grateful for the support of KLCC listeners.”

KLCC’s Brian Bull won First Place in Audio Series for his coverage of the Blue River Recovery from the Holiday Farm Fire. Brian also won First place for Social Equity Reporting for his coverage of Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women (Girls/People). And Brian got Second place for Video feature in the hard news category for Prescribed Burn on the Andrew Reasoner Wildlife Preserve.

KLCC’s Tiffany Eckert won Second place for Writing: Arts & Culture Reporting for her story Noobs! Do you even know what the kids are saying? Modern slang revealed! She also won Second place for Writing: Technology, Business & Economics Reporting for McKenzie Mist Rebuilds Blue River Water Facility A Year After Holiday Farm Fire, and for Audio: Soft News, Tiffany won Second place for 'What Destruction Feels Like:' PTSD Takes Heavy Toll On First Responders.

News Director Rachael McDonald won Second place for Audio: Environment & Disaster Reporting for Making a messy river for salmon and long-term resilience.

The KLCC news team also won Second place for Audio: Comprehensive Pandemic Coverage with reporting by Tiffany Eckert, Brian Bull and Karen Richards.

“The role of local journalists is essential to give us a picture of who we are, as individuals, neighbors and community,” remarked KLCC General Manager, Jim Rondeau. “It’s a proud day when the work of KLCC’s accomplished, professional team—funded by the commitment of contributing members—is recognized in such a resounding way.”

The Northwest Excellence in Journalism Awards competition is one of the largest of its kind in the nation. It honors journalists across SPJ Region 10, which covers Alaska, Washington, Idaho, Montana and Oregon.

Copyright @2022, KLCC.

KLCC 89.7 FM is a public radio station in Eugene Oregon, licensed to Lane Community College.
Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s former News Director. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000. After reporting for the Northwest News Network and KAZU, Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 as Morning Edition host and a general assignment reporter covering politics, the environment, education, and the arts. She was hired as KLCC News Director in 2018. Rachael departed KLCC in June, 2022.
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