WGBH News and Media Relations


October 1, 2015

WGBH Awards Four Fellowships to Outstanding Public Media Producers

BOSTON, Mass. (October 1, 2015) WGBH has awarded four fellowships to talented producers for 2015. The recipients are Sarah Colt, Christopher Hastings, Patricia Alvarado Núñez and Jillian Orr.

“We are immensely proud of the work that Sarah, Chris, Patricia and Jillian have already accomplished at WGBH,” said WGBH President and CEO Jon Abbott. “I look forward to seeing their talent and creativity grow in the service of public media as they join a distinguished legacy of producers and filmmakers.”

2015 Peter S. McGhee Fellowship – Sarah Colt

Sarah Colt, an award-winning filmmaker for WGBH’s history series American Experience, has been awarded WGBH’s 2015 Peter S. McGhee Fellowship. The Boston-based public broadcaster awards the McGhee Fellowship, named for WGBH’s former head of national programming, each year to a mid-career filmmaker who has shown exceptional promise in non-fiction television production.

Colt has worked with American Experience to produce Henry Ford, God in America, The Polio Crusade, We Shall Remain and Walt Disney, a two-part documentary that aired in September 2015. She is currently conducting research for a four-part American Experience film about the Gilded Age. She also has worked with WGBH’s investigative documentary series Frontline to produce A Nation Reborn and A New Light. 

Before starting her own company in 2008, Colt worked for David Grubin Productions, where she produced the highly acclaimed biography RFK, and earned an Emmy Award for Outstanding Science, Nature, and Technology for co-producing “The Secret Life of the Brain,” a five-part series.

The McGhee Fellowship honors an individual whose work reflects the attributes that define the standards set by Peter McGhee. Those standards include excellence, intelligence, fairness, passion, and scholarship. The Peter S. McGhee Fellowship was established upon McGhee’s retirement in 2002 to honor his extraordinary legacy after guiding WGBH’s national productions for more than three decades. The recipient of the Fellowship is assigned for one year to one of WGBH’s national production units. Colt will work with the American Experience team.

2015-2016 Margret and Hans Rey/Curious George Producer – Chris Hastings

WGBH’s Executive Producer and Editorial Manager of Content for WORLD Channel Christopher Hastings has been selected as the 2015-2016 Margret and Hans Rey/Curious George Producer, awarded each year to an outstanding WGBH producer. WORLD Channel, a service of WGBH is a 24/7 multicast channel featuring public television’s signature nonfiction documentary, science and news programming alongside original content from emerging producers.

Hastings oversees content development, acquisition, production, and day-to-day operations for WORLD Channel and WORLDChannel.org. As Executive Producer, he co-curates the award-winning documentary program America ReFramed as well as Local, USA and Your Voice, Your Story. America ReFramed has been recognized with three Telly Awards and a Gracie honor for “outstanding series” featuring programming for and by women. Season two of the series recently received a national News and Documentary Emmy nomination.

A 14-year veteran at WGBH, Hastings began his tenure with the iconic children’s series ZOOM and later transitioned to his New England Emmy award-winning work at the WGBH Lab, an innovative incubator for up-and-coming filmmakers. He joined WORLD Channel in 2011 as interim managing producer.

Made possible through a bequest from author Margret Rey to WGBH through the Curious George Foundation, the Margret and Hans Rey/Curious George Producership recognizes a WGBH producer who works in an area that reflects Rey’s broad interests, including science, public affairs, arts, health and children’s programming.

2015 Becton Fellows – Patricia Alvarado Núñez and Jillian Orr

Patricia Alvarado Núñez and Jillian Orr have been selected as this year’s Becton Fellows. The fellowship, which is supported by the Becton Fund and named in honor of WGBH’s former president and current vice chair Henry Becton, Jr., recognizes promising WGBH producers and content creators whose work is emblematic of WGBH’s public service mission.

Alvarado Núñez serves as Co-Executive Producer of Sing That Thing! and has produced an immense array of television programming, including award-winning documentaries, music specials, on-location and studio-based programs. She was the series producer for WGBH’s La Plaza, one of the longest-running Latino series on public TV; Maria Hinojosa: One-on-One; and Neighborhood Kitchens. She also co-produced American Experience’s Fidel Castro. Her productions have received 10 New England Emmys, two TELLYs and two CINE Golden Eagles.

Orr serves as Executive Producer in WGBH’s Children’s Media group. She leads the First 8 Studios digital team, with a focus on building the research base of proper technology design and use for healthy child development through participatory design with learning scientists, pediatricians, parents, teachers and children. Currently, she is exploring how tablet technology can enhance preschoolers’ STEM learning, collaboration and reflection, as well as preschool teachers’ professional development through research and development projects. Orr also works with pediatricians to develop interactive e-books and multimedia for young children and families to understand early development of children and medical diagnoses, such as Type I diabetes.

The Becton Fund was created in 2006 in anticipation of Becton’s transition from president to vice chair. The endowed fund supports editorial efforts that carry out WGBH’s mission and helps ensure that WGBH has access to the most talented and creative leaders in the field.

About WGBH
WGBH Boston is America’s preeminent public broadcaster and the largest producer of PBS content for TV and the Web. Television channels include WGBH 2, WGBX 44, and the digital channels World and Create. WGBH Radio serves listeners across New England with 89.7 WGBH Boston's Local NPR®; 99.5 WCRB; and WCAI, the Cape and Islands NPR® Station. Find more information at wgbh.org.  


WGBH Media Relations

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Catherine Burke