First-Ever RTDNA/NEFE Excellence in Personal Finance Reporting Award Winners Selected

For Immediate Release: August 29, 2012
Contact: Ryan Murphy, ryanm@rtdna.org

WASHINGTON – RTDNA announced Wednesday the first-ever winners of the RTDNA/NEFE Excellence in Personal Finance Reporting Award, produced in partnership with the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE).

In the television category, Lorrie Taylor of WJW Fox8 in Cleveland was selected as the winner for her series of pieces, “The Perfect Score.”

In the radio category, Tess Vigeland of Marketplace was selected as the winner for her piece, “From heavy industry to intensive care.”

In the online category, personal finance writer Andrea Coombes was selected for her piece, “With 401(k) disclosure, some fees still hidden” for MarketWatch.

The winners will receive a $1,000 prize and complimentary registration to the 2012 Excellence in Journalism convention in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., along with round trip economy-class airfare and two nights hotel.

"The response to our first-ever RTDNA/NEFE Award for Excellence in Personal Finance Reporting was truly outstanding and exceeded our expectations!” said RTDNA Executive Director, Mike Cavender. “There is a lot of excellent reporting in this critical area and we are very pleased to join with NEFE in showcasing the best of that work at our EIJ '12 convention next month in Fort Lauderdale."

“The recession is a personal event that has affected many individuals and families and the quality coverage of personal finance stories from RTDNA members has been a great benefit to help all Americans get through these challenging times,” says Ted Beck, president and CEO of the National Endowment for Financial Education.

The winners will also be featured panelists at the “Excellence in Financial Reporting: How Award-Winning Journalists Get it Done,” session at EIJ12 on Friday, September 21, at 2:30 p.m. ET.

In that session, the award winners will break down their winning submissions and share the key reporting tools and best-practices they used to add immediate depth to their reporting. Audience members will walk away from the session with several ways to creatively approach their reporting and make comprehensive topics more digestible to viewers and listeners.

This award is being presented as part of the Money Matters resource on the RTDNA website. Money Matters is a tool to help news personnel better cover stories about financial issues.

To download the Money Matters widget for your website or station site, please click here.

About the Award Winners

Lorrie Taylor is a nationally recognized investigative and consumer reporter whose work has saved lives, changed Ohio law and put criminals behind bars. Lorrie is the recipient of a National Edward R. Murrow Award, one of broadcast journalism's highest honors. She also holds two National Headliner Awards, five regional Murrow's and several regional Emmy's. Lorrie has been honored by the Society of Professional Journalists with two first place awards for her work in the areas of criminal justice and the environment. She has also been recognized by the Newspaper Guild of America for her work on behalf of troubled homeowners. Lorrie heads the Fox8 Call for Action Unit where she works to educate consumers and solve their problems. Lorrie is a member of Investigative Reporters and Editors, National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Society of Environmental Journalists, Radio Television Digital News Association, Society of Professional Journalists and the Cleveland Press Club. Lorrie was also the recipient of a 2006 fellowship from the Society of Environmental Journalists and is a former Board of Governor for the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.


Tess Vigeland is the host of Marketplace Money, a weekly personal finance program that looks at why we do what we do with our money: your life, with dollar signs. Vigeland and her guests take calls from listeners to answer their most vexing money management questions, and the program helps explain what the latest business and financial news means to our wallets and bank accounts. Vigeland joined Marketplace in September 2001, as a host of Marketplace Morning Report. She rose at o-dark-thirty to deliver the latest in business and economic news for nearly four years before returning briefly to reporting and producing. For her outstanding achievements in journalism, Vigeland has earned numerous awards from the Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists. Vigeland has a bachelor's degree from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. She is a contributor to The New York Times and is a volunteer fundraiser for the Pasadena Animal League and Pasadena Humane Society. In her free time, Vigeland studies at the Pasadena Conservatory of Music, continuing 20-plus years of training as a classical pianist.

Andrea Coombes is a personal-finance writer and editor who explores the money topics that matter to people now, with a focus on retirement and taxes. After 10 years at MarketWatch, where she worked as a reporter, assistant editor and finally as the website's personal-finance editor, Coombes recently decided to leap into the world of freelancing. She continues to write a column for MarketWatch, as well as contribute to the Wall Street Journal and other publications. Coombes, who holds a master's degree from U.C. Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism, has won awards from the Society of Professional Journalists and the National Association of Consumer Advocates, and often appears on radio and television to discuss her stories. She's on Twitter @andreacoombes.

About RTDNA

RTDNA is the world's largest professional organization devoted exclusively to electronic journalism. RTDNA represents local and network journalists in broadcasting, cable and other electronic media in more than 30 countries.

About the National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE)

NEFE is an independent nonprofit organization committed to inspiring empowered financial decision making for individuals and families through every stage of life. For more information, visit www.nefe.org.