WLKY, Gene Kang Win Big at TV Awards

A Best Reporter award for Gene Kang

The Kentucky AP Broadcasters handed out some awards Saturday night, providing fodder for future TV promos and resume stuffing material for local reporters and photographers.  These awards pit Louisville stations against those in Lexington, and as always there are some surprising results.

I’m not saying that WHAS-TV’s Gene Kang isn’t a good reporter, but I wouldn’t award him “Best TV Reporter” for the market. It’s always been my critique of awards presentations in journalism — they aren’t based so much on objective observation, but on who does the best job of getting entries together. But this is how they keep score, so let’s take a look.

Local station bragging rights go to WLKY-TV, which took home a dozen overall awards and six first-place honors. That includes a prize for Investigative Reporting to John Boel, the king of local journalism awards, for work he did on “Taser Use” before he left WLKY. The CBS affiliate also grabbed firsts for Best Newscast, Continuing Coverage and sports anchor (Fred Cowgill). Videographer Scott Eckhardt picked up firsts for editing and videography.

WHAS-TV grabbed 9 awards and 4 first-places. The station won for Light News Feature (Anna Prendergast), Sports videography (Michael Driver) and Best Website in addition to Kang’s prize.

WDRB’s Bennett Haeberle picked up a first-place for political reporting, as did 41’s Matt English for feature videography. WAVE got no first-places, but its newcast was judged second-best.