WHYY News was awarded a national Edward R. Murrow Award from the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) today. The awards honor “outstanding achievements” in multimedia journalism and are “among the most prestigious in broadcast and digital news.”
“Stop and Frisk: Revisit or Resist” — a collaboration between WHYY News and Temple University’s Logan Center for Urban Investigative Reporting — earned recognition in the Podcast category for large market radio stations.
“This podcast gave us the ability to express ourselves … there was a measure of humanity by the journalists who reported on us as people. They investigated to tell our story to help others better understand the plight of the people on the frontlines,” said Paul Jackson, a community organizer who works with Frontline Dads in North Philadelphia and citywide.
Comparing stop and frisk to feeling like a cavity search, Jackson described the police tactic in episode one of the five-part series.
Jackson said it’s common that people don’t agree on the practice of stop and frisk and the varying views may appear logical to those who agree with them (or illogical otherwise). He shared that his team was thrilled their stories were not watered down in the podcast.
“WHYY’s receipt of a national Murrow Award for its podcast series “Stop & Frisk: Revisit and Resist” is doubly satisfying. For certain, recognition with a prestigious Murrow Award is in and of itself a sign of media production excellence,” said WHYY President and CEO Bill Marrazzo.
“And in addition, this recognition affirms WHYY’s ability to explore controversial public policy issues with an intent to spur citizen discussion off-air and off-line in the communities we serve! We are very grateful for this acknowledgement.“
The podcast was written by Yvonne Latty, co-hosted and produced by Latty and Sammy Caiola, executive produced by Sarah Glover, engineered by Al Banks, with reporting by Sam Searles, and shaped by numerous contributors.
“WHYY News is ecstatic about receiving the National Edward R. Murrow Award for the ‘Stop and Frisk: Revisit or Resist’ podcast. The multimedia project unearthed and centered community voices and perspectives on the impact of policing and police stops in Philadelphia,” said Sarah Glover, WHYY Vice President of News & CIvic Dialogue. “This journalism project has sparked ongoing discussion on the use of a debatable policing tactic and represents the meaningful civic dialogue work at WHYY News.”
Stop and frisk made local headlines after then City Council President Darrell Clarke called for its use following a mass shooting in July 2022. Reaction from residents and elected officials was as swift as it was polarizing.
“Stop and Frisk: Revisit or Resist” delved into the issue. The policing practice, and public safety at large, became central to Philadelphia’s mayoral primary election. Cherelle Parker, the Democratic winner, previously declared she supported “constitutional” stop and frisk.
Regionally, WHYY News in May was awarded six Edward R. Murrow Awards among large market stations in New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. Those included awards for Excellence in Innovation, News Documentary, Excellence in Sound, Sports Reporting, and Newscast.
RTDNA has presented the Murrow Awards since 1971. A full list of the national Murrow award winners can be found online.
In addition to the national Murrow award, “Stop and Frisk: Revisit or Resist” won a regional Murrow award, five Keystone Media awards, best investigative work of the year in the Pen & Pencil Philadelphia News Awards, a second-place collaborative effort award from the Public Media Journalists Association, and was a finalist in the 2023 National Association of Black Journalists Salute to Excellence Awards.