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KRWG wins awards for broadcast excellence

New Mexico State University’s KRWG Public Media has won two 2016 Excellence in Broadcasting Awards from the New Mexico Broadcasters Association.


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Reporter/producer Simon Thompson of New Mexico State University’s KRWG Public Media won the 2016 Local Television Programming award for his production “Issues and Answers: Our Water Future" from the New Mexico Broadcasters Association. (NMSU courtesy photo)
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New Mexico State University’s KRWG Public Media Director of Content Fred Martino will accept the award for the 2016 Best Website in a Large Market from the New Mexico Broadcasters Association. (NMSU courtesy photo)

KRWG won the award for best website in the large market radio category. It marks the third time in eight years KRWG has won an award for its website: two from the NMBA and one from the Associated Press.

KRWG Director of Content Fred Martino said there has been a 400 percent increase in website traffic over the past six years.

“Like many news organizations, we are putting a lot of work into our website, and the result is that it’s very robust,” Martino said. “We cover local and state news, and the website is updated seven days a week, including updates throughout the day from the Associated Press.”

Facebook and Twitter also help drive traffic to the krwg.org website, which was redesigned in 2015.

“Many public media organizations use their websites for archives of local content,” he said. “But we needed it to be a primary source for news.”

Martino will accept the website award at the annual NMBA Excellence in Broadcasting Awards Banquet in Albuquerque on June 3.

Simon Thompson, a reporter and producer at KRWG, won the Local Television Programming award for his production “Issues and Answers: Our Water Future.” He was competing with much larger stations from Albuquerque.

“I was very flattered that it was regarded as such a good documentary,” Thompson said. “I feel like sometimes awards overlook the smaller stations.”

Thompson said his one-man production raised many issues that need to be addressed about the water scarcity in the region. His show included a documentary section and a panel discussion.

“There is so much science involved in the water situation, and the one-hour format allowed us to articulate the complexity of the issue and to paint the full picture of how dire our water situation really is,” he said.

Thompson’s reporting has also been picked up by KPBS-TV in San Diego. “KPBS-TV has commissioned Simon to do several TV features for the station, which is another indication of his excellent work,” Martino said.

Originally from Australia, Thompson has worked at KRWG for two years. In late May, National Public Radio’s “Here and Now” program aired his report about Germany’s Luftwaffe Air Force Flying Training Center leaving Holloman Air Force Base near Alamogordo, New Mexico, after 20 years.