Jake Harper and Samantha Horton Won for Continuing Coverage and Sports Reporting
INDIANAPOLIS – Reporters Jake Harper and Samantha Horton, received Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for their COVID-19 pandemic-related coverage. WFYI’s Side Effects health reporter Jake Harper won for his continued reporting on the impact of the pandemic in Indiana prisons. Statewide Indiana Public Broadcasting News business reporter Samantha Horton won for her coverage of the impact of the Indy 500’s lack of spectators on Speedway, Indiana businesses.
“Horton and Harper worked throughout 2020 to report the pandemic’s impacts on our communities and those most vulnerable in them,” said WFYI News Director Sarah Neal-Estes. “That commitment continues, to foster understanding that helps people create and maintain systems that support everyone.”
Over several months, Harper's reporting highlighted shortcomings in the way Indiana's prison system responded to the COVID crisis. Through the words of people in prison, their relatives and advocates, he raised questions about safety precautions and how the system provided information to the public. Following his reporting, the corrections department started a comprehensive review of the Indiana Women's Prison and its warden retired.
Horton’s winning story examined the factors that led to the Indy 500’s decision to run the race without its typical sell-out crowds, as well as how local businesses and residents reacted to the unprecedented situation.
“Jake Harper and Samantha Horton’s work exemplifies how WFYI’s news team kept providing both investigative and in-depth coverage of the impact of COVID-19 in Indiana,” said Greg Petrowich, WFYI’s president and CEO. “We are honored to have their efforts recognized and to see the impact of their reporting in the community.”
About WFYI Public Media
Since 1970, WFYI has served Central Indiana as a trusted friend. Its nonprofit public radio and TV stations, digital engagement and community engagement activities inform, entertain and educate Hoosiers of all ages and walks of life. WFYI broadcasts original content as well as programming from PBS and NPR. Learn more at wfyi.org.