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NMSU's KRWG wins broadcast awards for election coverage, named radio station of the year


New Mexico State University’s KRWG public broadcasting station earned nine awards including station of the year in radio for KRWG-FM during the New Mexico Broadcasters Association’s (NMBA) annual Excellence in Broadcasting Awards.

 “These awards represent the collective efforts of the most talented and hard-working individuals I’ve had the good fortune to work with,” said Adrian Velarde, general manager of KRWG public media. “The pandemic threw them nothing but curveballs, yet they adapted and rose to every challenge. I’m beyond proud of their work.”

 NMBA selected the 2021 award-winners from works submitted by New Mexico broadcasters throughout the state for work completed during 2020. KRWG competes statewide for the television category and in the large market category for radio.

KRWG public media Director of Content Fred Martino received the award as producer and anchor of KRWG’s 2020 election coverage in the television category, a statewide award. This award is shared with Christian Valle, director and producer, and Joe Widmer, co-producer of the programs.

“We produced 14 candidate forums for the 2020 election, which was a record for KRWG-TV,” Martino said. “That was extremely important of course, because for the most part people were not able to have in-person candidate forums. It may have been the only chance for voters to hear from candidates on a range of important issues. I also was proud of the addition of our hour-long call-in show ‘Voice of the Public.’”

Martino received an award in the radio category of specialty show for “Voice of the Public: Coronavirus Update” and another award for radio talk show or interview for “Frontline: The Choice 2020.”

KRWG-FM Broadcast Operations Manager KC Counts received five radio awards in the categories of breaking news, continuing coverage, sports show or interview and newscaster. Counts also submitted the newscast from June primary election night coverage, which won the radio newscast station award.

The 2021 NMBA convention is scheduled for Sept. 24, which will include presentations of the Excellence in Broadcasting Awards.

 NMBA is a not-for-profit corporation started in 1951. Its membership includes radio and television stations, as well as other community members with a stake in broadcasting throughout the state. For more than six decades, the organization has encouraged standardizing customs and practices in broadcasting in the best interests of the public and the broadcasting industry.