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FM89 Reporters Win Three “Golden Mike” Awards

Valley Public Radio was recently honored at the 65th annual Golden Mike Awards in Los Angeles. The station won three honors in the prestigious competition, hosted by the Southern California Radio Television News Association, which honors the best broadcast journalism in the region.

Valley Public Radio’s Diana Aguilera won the award for Best Investigative Report (Radio, Division B) for her piece about the one year anniversary of the Rim Fire. Aguilera’s report detailed the lack of progress in the investigation into the cause of the fire, concerns about the way the fire was fought, and the call by Tuolumne County officials for a full Congressional hearing on the matter. Just days after Valley Public Radio’s report aired in August 2014, the U.S. Attorney broke his silence and indicted a hunter for starting the massive blaze.

KVPR's Joe Moore and Diana Aguilera accepted the awards on behalf of the station at the awards gala at the Universal City Hilton in Los Angeles

  FM89’s Ezra David Romero won an award for Best Business and Consumer Reporting (Radio, Division B) for his piece on Google’s self-driving car project which operates a research station at the former Castle Air Force Base in Atwater. The report looked not only at the secretive Google test facility, but also at other high tech companies that have set up shop at the base, including companies that build everything from drones to rockets.

Romero also won the award for Best Light Feature Reporting (Radio, One Minute or Longer) for his piece about a Fresno woman’s quest to restore a local landmark for the Latino community, the historic Azteca Theatre.

Both Valley Public Radio’s Director of Program Content Joe Moore, and reporter Diana Aguilera were on hand at the Universal City Hilton for the awards gala in January. “We couldn’t be more proud of the work our reporters have produced over the past year, so to see them honored with the Golden Mike Awards is very satisfying,” says Moore. “It’s one of the biggest honors for broadcast journalism in California, and we were thrilled to be invited to participate for the first time this year.”

“It was an amazing experience to represent Valley Public Radio while surrounded by the best in the business,” says Aguilera. “We’re so honored to receive the awards and we will continue to tell the fascinating stories about the diverse Central Valley.”