WGBH News and Media Relations


June 11, 2014

WGBH Radio Wins National Edward R. Murrow Award for “Underground Trade”

89.7 WGBH News team and reporter Phillip Martin recognized for investigative series on human trafficking

BOSTON, Mass. (June 11, 2014) – 89.7 WGBH Radio – part of the WGBH News team – has earned a national 2014 Edward R. Murrow Award for “Underground Trade,” an eight-part investigative series on human trafficking. Each year, the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) honors outstanding achievements in electronic journalism with the Edward R. Murrow Awards.

Led by reporting and producing from senior reporter Phillip Martin, a past Murrow Award recipient, “Underground Trade” traveled from Boston to New York and East Asia to cover the modern slave trade of human trafficking. WGBH News Director Ted Canova edited the series. WGBH’s Antonio Oliart, Tina Tobey, Alan Mattes and Jane Pipik engineered several reports, Brendan Lynch designed a companion web experience and Meredith Nierman contributed photography assets. The series was produced in collaboration with the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism at Brandeis University, the International Center for Journalists and the Ford Foundation. After the original broadcast on 89.7 WGBH Radio, the report was shared nationally on The Huffington Post.

“Congratulations to Phillip Martin and the entire WGBH News team for this national honor from the Edward R. Murrow Awards. ‘Underground Trade’ is a testament to Phillip’s tireless dedication to telling important, complex stories – and one of many reasons why he is regarded as one of the top journalists in his field,” WGBH Radio general manager Phil Redo said. “The phenomenal success that the WGBH News team has seen this year shows that our brand of quality journalism resonates with audiences in our backyards and the national stage.”

Phillip Martin joined the WGBH News team in 2010. He is a Senior Fellow with the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism and a 2012 International Center for Journalists Ford Foundation Fellow. He has received a number of journalism honors, including a 2013 New York Festivals Gold Radio award, the 2013 United Nations Department of Public Information (UNDPI) Gold Medal, the 2012 PASS Award, the 2012 regional Edward R. Murrow Award for Ongoing Coverage (team award), the Margret and Hans Rey WGBH producer award, the 2011 Edward R. Murrow Award for Investigative Reporting, the 2010 Asian American Journalists Award for National Radio Reporting, the 2008 Ruben Salazar Award and the 2005 MABJ Radio Documentary Award. He is an adjunct professor at Brandeis University’s Heller School of Public Policy.

The Takeaway, a co-production between WGBH and Public Radio International in Boston and WNYC in New York, also won for Best Use of Sound/Video for its radio story “JFK’s Unspoken Speech.”

“This year's field was the best we’ve ever seen,” said RTDNA Chairman Chris Carl. “The entries gave our judges the luxury of a fantastic pool from which to select the winners.”

The recognition is the latest in a string of honors given to the WGBH News team, including regional wins from the Edward R. Murrow Awards in April. WGBH News won several AP Awards for radio coverage in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, as well as the top honor from the Bart Richards Award for Media Criticism for the weekly TV series, Beat the Press. The WGBH News team draws on the talent of a multi-platform newsroom that includes radio, television and digital reporting. The WGBH newsroom, which has grown and evolved over the last three years, continues to invest in quality, substantive local coverage and telling the stories that only public media can tell.

The full list of winners can be found here. The awards will be presented at a dinner in New York City on October 6th.

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 Public Radio; 99.5 WCRB; and WCAI, the Cape and Islands NPR® Station. Find more information at wgbh.org.



WGBH Media Relations

Emily Balk

Catherine Burke