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OPB Co-Production Honored for Journalistic Excellence in Covering Drug and Alcohol Problems

OPB | Nov. 29, 2006 3:53 a.m. | Updated: Dec. 5, 2013 11:14 a.m.

FRONTLINE: THE METH EPIDEMIC, a co-production of Oregon Public Broadcasting (OPB), The Oregonian and WGBH (Boston) has just received the prestigious Nancy Dickerson Whitehead Award, honoring journalists who have “demonstrated the highest standards of reporting on drug issues.” The award was presented to producer Carl Byker at a ceremony in New York City earlier this month.

The hour-long documentary, inspired by a series of articles by award-winning Oregonian reporter Steve Suo, examined the meth crisis in and beyond Oregon. OPB expanded upon this work with a series of programs on OPB TV, OPB Radio and the Internet tracking the impact of meth on individuals, families and communities, and what is being done to combat the problem.

The Nancy Dickerson Whitehead Award was the first in the nation to recognize excellence in reporting on drug and alcohol problems.

“This is a huge honor for this documentary to be acknowledged with such a prestigious award by people who know the human cost of meth addiction,” said Steve Bass, president and CEO of Oregon Public Broadcasting. “We’re pleased that through this type of reporting we have been able to play a part in bringing awareness to the severity of the problem and helping affect changes in laws that make it harder for meth dealers to obtain this drug. And we began a dialogue in our community that continues today to assist those in trouble because of this terrible drug.”

FRONTLINE: THE METH EPIDEMIC will be rebroadcast on OPB TV on January 30 at 9pm.

About the Nancy Dickerson Whitehead Award
During her long and distinguished career as a broadcast journalist, Nancy Dickerson Whitehead reported on many critical social concerns, including the nation’s problems with drug and alcohol abuse. Her thoughtful analysis increased public understanding of these complex issues and reflected her own deep commitment to finding more effective answers. As a member of the Board of Directors of Drug Strategies, a nonprofit research institute in Washington, D.C., she worked to develop programs and policies to reduce substance abuse.

These awards honor Nancy Dickerson Whitehead’s efforts to improve media coverage of drug issues. The awards are given annually to two journalists, one from print media and one from broadcast (radio or television), who have demonstrated the highest standards of reporting on drug issues.

About OPB
OPB is the state’s most far-reaching and accessible media resource, providing free access to programming for children and adults designed to give voice to community, connect Oregon and its neighbors and illuminate a wider world. Every week, over 1.5 million people tune in to or log on to OPB’s television, radio and Internet delivered services. As the hub of operations for the state’s Emergency Broadcast and Amber Alert services, OPB serves as the backbone for the distribution of critical information to broadcasters and homes throughout Oregon. Oregon Public Broadcasting is a statewide network that includes OPB Television, an affiliate of the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), and OPB Radio, presenting local news coverage and the programs of National Public Radio (NPR), Public Radio International (PRI) and American Public Media (APM). The OPB Web site is opb.org.

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