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NPR Makes Three Promotional Moves at the Exec Level

Laura Soto-Barra is now the VP of Research, Archives & Data Strategy (RAD); Chris Nelson assumes the role of SVP, Technology Operations; and Keith Jenkins rises to VP of Visuals and Music Strategy.

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NPR will see some changes at the executive level as the company promotes three people to new positions, per Inside Radio.

Laura Soto-Barra is now the VP of Research, Archives & Data Strategy (RAD); Chris Nelson assumes the role of SVP, Technology Operations; and Keith Jenkins rises to VP of Visuals and Music Strategy.

“The RAD team’s work is indispensable to our NPR colleagues. By being alert and perceptive about people and processes, we are responsive and accountable,” Soto-Barr said. 

 “We strive to anticipate, identify and build on the intersections between our work and that of our many partners across the newsroom and the organization – a list that has been growing considerably. My promotion reflects the value that research, archives, and data hold for NPR.”

Nelson has been with NPR for 21 years. With his team, he has assisted the public broadcaster in covering significant news events, provided that its content gets to hundreds of radio stations, and made sure the staff’s day-to-day technology needs are met. 

“For technologists, NPR offers a unique media environment that requires both technical excellence and a deep commitment to our public service journalism mission,” Nelson remarked. 

“The professionals in our IT, Audio Engineering, Distribution, and soon-to-be-formed Content Production Technology teams are world-class in their fields, and it is an honor to work alongside them and champion their important work. I look forward to our continued growth and collaboration.”

Meanwhile, Jenkins joined NPR in 2018, and in his new position, he’ll operate with the teams in Programming and News to create, socialize and start content plans for visuals and music.

“NPR Visuals and NPR Music are establishing public media on the platforms and in the spaces where the next generation of NPR audiences can already be found,” Jenkins added. “They are on YouTube watching Tiny Desk, they are on Instagram, they are on Alexa, and they are on TikTok.”

“Most importantly, they are heavy consumers of visual information and entertainment. They have grown up with screens everywhere, and photos and videos are their primary means of communication. I’m excited for the opportunity to help NPR evolve with our audience and find new ways to navigate this world with them.”

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The DJV Show Wins Gracie Award

hese awards honor the most accomplished women in television, radio, and digital media with a presentation at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles on May 24th. 

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The Alliance for Women in Media Foundation has announced the 47th Annual Gracie Awards winners, including the radio talk show, The DJV Show, hosted by Doug Stephan and Co-Hosts Jennifer Horn and Victoria Keelan, along with Jai Kershner presenting the What’s Trending Report.

These awards honor the most accomplished women in television, radio, and digital media with a presentation at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles on May 24th. 

“The DJV Show is customizable by daypart to fit any station’s needs. Stations can localize the show by including their own content at designated points throughout each hour,” the statement said, which Barrett News Media obtained. 

“It can also be tailored to fit multiple formats, including talk, adult contemporary, classic hits, hot AC, oldies, and more. The Gracies honor the outstanding talent, such as The DJV Show, and content in radio, television, and digital media made by, for, and about women.”

The “DJV Show” is a morning talk-radio show that airs live Monday through Friday from 5 am until 9 am, featuring a fast-paced layout covering various topics. Furthermore, the program has over 325 affiliates nationwide. 

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Federal Judge Throws Out Lawsuit by a Former NPR Employee

Zandile Mkwanazi’s suit alleged he was subject to discrimination based on his race and a hostile work environment.

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A federal judge has thrown out a lawsuit brought by a former NPR network operation technician who alleged that he faced racial discrimination and unfair treatment while employed at the network.

According to Inside Radio, Zandile Mkwanazi’s suit alleged he was subject to discrimination based on his race and a hostile work environment. His suit alleged that he was subject to discrimination based on his race and a hostile work environment. 

Mkwanazi was fired in October 2019. He sought back pay and damages from NPR and a court order blocking the network from taking any retaliatory actions against him with future employers.

The lawsuit said, Mkwanazi’s supervisor, who was white, introduced him to coworkers as “a new boy working for us” and repeatedly used the term “boy.” Mkwanazi said he found the term racially offensive even though his supervisor referred to all employees as “boys.”

“The parties participated in mediation, and they have reached a resolution in principle,” attorneys said in a statement. Mkwanazi was seeking unspecified damages for lost wages as well as compensatory and punitive damages.

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Dave Ramsey Documentary Wins 2022 Webby Award

“Borrowed Future: How Student Loans Are Killing the American Dream” will be honored during the 2022 Annual Webby Awards.

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A web documentary produced by nationally syndicated radio personality Dave Ramsey has earned recognition from the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS). 

According to Inside Radio, “Borrowed Future: How Student Loans Are Killing the American Dream” will be honored during the 2022 Annual Webby Awards. The event will take place at the 26th Annual Webby Awards on May 16 in New York. 

“There’s no doubt we stirred up a holy ruckus with this documentary, and I’m so proud of the team that put it together,” Ramsey said in a statement. 

“The student loan industry is downright evil. We definitely can’t bank on student loan forgiveness, and it’s about time America said, ‘I’ve had it!’”

“Borrowed Future” is Directed by David DiCicco. The story follows college graduates who owe between $9,000 and $1 million in student loans, a college graduate who paid cash for college, and a group of high schoolers who haven’t made their choice yet.

For weeks, the film held top spots on multiple streaming platform charts: No. 1 documentary on Google Play, No. 2 documentary on Apple TV, and No. 5 documentary (rent or buy category) on Amazon Prime Video.

“This documentary has set the standard for innovation and creativity on the Internet,” Claire Graves, Executive Director of The Webby Awards. “This award is a testament to the skill, ingenuity, and vision of its creators.”

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