89.1, WEMU takes top honors for the second consecutive year at the broadcast excellence awards

Part of the WEMU team at the Broadcast Excellence Awards gala.

YPSILANTI — For the second consecutive year, 89.1, WEMU, Eastern Michigan University’s public radio station, was named Station of the Year, Public Radio Group One, by the Michigan Association of Broadcasters at their Broadcast Excellence Awards gala on April 6 in Detroit.

Representatives from broadcast associations Illinois, Maine, and Wisconsin judged the entries from Michigan and included this feedback on the Station of the Year honor:

“WEMU’s submission for Station of the Year is a compelling narrative of resilience, community engagement, and exceptional local service in a highly competitive market. Despite being a “small-ish” station with a 16-thousand-watt signal in a region dominated by broadcasting giants, WEMU has not only managed to exist but to thrive, thanks to its hyper-local focus and deep connection with the community it serves.”

Walter Kraft, vice president for communications at Eastern Michigan University, the division that oversees WEMU, added, "The team at WEMU has tremendous experience, creativity, and skill, whether it be news coverage or music programming. 

"Today's news landscape demands a local resource such as WEMU that can be relied on for fair and balanced reporting, often covering hyper-local issues that are not the priority of other media outlets in southeast Michigan," Kraft said. "This is where David Fair and the news team really shine. At the same time, people also need a break from the challenges of the day, and our award-winning team of local music hosts, led by Michael Jewett, brings a distinct blend of curated jazz, blues, and roots music that listeners won't find anywhere else. Our commitment to supporting the community is reflected in the work of #teamWEMU every single day."

WEMU brought home a total of ten awards, including Station of the Year, six Best awards, and three Merit awards:

Feature/Use of Medium:  Record Store Day in Ann Arbor (Josh Hakala)
Marketing Materials and Promos:  Black Music Month
Music Feature or Special:  Langston Hughes & The Great Migration (Jessica Webster)
Musical Programming:  The Roots Music Project (Jeremy Baldwin)
Community Involvement:  Black History Moments
Membership Appeal:  WEMU Squirrel (Josh Hakala)
Use of Multiplatform Media – Promotional/Membership: Sunday Best (Nik Thompson)

Spot News:  Ann Arbor School Outrage (Cathy Shafran)
Use of Multiplatform Media – Programming Materials: Changing the Cycle of Menstruation Stigma (Josh Hakala)
Station Excellence

“WEMU doesn’t produce programming or content to win awards, but we do produce award-winning content,” said Molly Motherwell, general manager of 89.1 WEMU. “It’s gratifying to see this recognized by our national peers in the industry and a real reward for a small team that comes to work every day with a passion for what they do serving our community.”

About WEMU
WEMU is a listener-supported, NPR affiliate with a format of local news, jazz, and blues, in addition to NPR news, information, and cultural programming. The station broadcasts to an 8-county area that includes all or part of Washtenaw, Wayne, Oakland, Livingston, Lenawee, Jackson, and Lucas (OH) and streams live 24 hours at wemu.org.

About Eastern Michigan University
Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 13,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and its graduate school. National publications regularly recognize EMU for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. Visit the University’s rankings and points of pride websites to learn more. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website. To stay up to date on University news, activities and announcements, visit EMU Today.

May 08, 2024

Written by:
Media Relations

Media Contact:
Melissa Thrasher