For Immediate Release                                                                                    WXXI logo
Contact: Kristin Tutino, WXXI, (585) 258-0253



(Rochester, New York) June 5, 2012 – WXXI received a first place award and five special mention citations from the New York State Associated Press Broadcasters Association (NYSAPBA) at the association’s annual awards ceremony held in Saratoga Springs, New York on Saturday, June 2, 2012.

Innovation Trail, a collaboration of five upstate New York public media outlets led by WXXI, received the first place award. Innovation Trail provides in-depth reports about the innovative technologies, businesses, and policies that are helping rebuild the region’s economy. Innovation Trail’s talk show, Innovation Conversation: The Future of Fracking, garnered the first place award in the Best News Special/Documentary category. The program, hosted by reporter Daniel Robison at WNED, was a discussion of what's in store for upstate New York as it considers allowing natural gas extraction through the controversial hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," technique.

Innovation Trail also received two special mention citations. “Brain Drain”, a series that investigated what can be done to attract and keep young people in upstate New York, earned a special mention citation in the Best News Series category. The production team included reporters Zack Seward, Emma Jacobs, Daniel Robison, and Ryan Morden. Innovation Trail’s web site,, also received a special mention citation in the Best Web Site category.

Need to Know Rochester: A Challenge to Rochester Schools, a television news special that focused on the plight of black male students in the Rochester City School District, received a special mention citation for Best News Special/Documentary. The program took an in-depth look at why black male students are more likely than other students to drop out of school before earning their diplomas. The production team included: Julie Philipp, Hélène Biandudi, Marty Kaufman, and Jeff Beach.

Liza’s Letter, a series of good news stories, received a special mention citation in the Best Feature category. The series was inspired by a local, almost-ten-year-old girl named Liza who sent a letter to WXXI News asking for a whole day of “happy news” and offering to round up some of her friends to listen. That letter resulted in WXXI News presenting a series of stories that focused on the positive in local health, business, education, arts, sports, and more. The production team included: Julie Philipp, Zack Seward, Alex Crichton, LeShea Agnew, Hélène Biandudi, and Carlet Cleare.

Reporter’s Notebook: Lake Town Visits, a series of reports that looked at the small towns in the Finger Lakes region, earned a special mention citation in the Best Feature category. WXXI’s team of journalists each picked a different Finger Lakes county out of a hat, and then went there to spend a little time in some of those small lake towns. The production team included: Julie Philipp, Carlet Cleare, Rachel Ward, Zack Seward, Hélène Biandudi, and LeShea Agnew.


WXXI is the essential, life-long educational media resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI puts the community first with programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of diverse community issues. Log on to for more information about our services and programs.

Press Release Index