2012 Winners

RTDNF is proud to annouce the 2012 Scholarship & Fellowship winners. Each day from Dec. 3 through Dec. 14 we will be announcing a new winner. Please check in here at RTDNA.org to find out who won!
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Dec. 3, 2012: "Michele Clark Fellowship" - RTDNF's first fellowship is named for a CBS News correspondent who was killed in a plane crash while on assignment in 1972. Her family and colleagues at CBS sent money in lieu of flowers to create a fund in her name, endowing a permanent $1,000 award for young, promising minority professionals in television or radio news.
 
2012 Michele Clark Fellowship Winner - Rosa Flores
 
Rosa Flores has contributed news reports at the national, state and local levels.  Presently, she anchors the 4pm newscast and reports for the 10pm show at WBRZ, the ABC affiliate in Baton Rouge.  She has also worked at WDSU, KHOU and KWTV. 
 
She is the author of Progreso, a history book about her hometown.  Rosa was selected to participate in the Peter Jennings Project for Journalists and the Constitution and two Metcalf Institute for Marine and Environmental Reporting fellowships.  
 
Rosa earned a Bachelor’s in Broadcast Journalism, a Bachelor’s in Business Administration and a Master’s in Accounting at the University of Texas at Austin.

View some of Rosa's work on:

TWITTER: https://twitter.com/RosaFlores

“I’m honored and humbled to receive the Michele Clark Fellowship. Clark helped pave the road for sharp and dedicated women in journalism; and as the recipient of this award, my goal is to advance that trajectory.  There is no story too small.  There is no issue too big... only a professional responsibility to seek the truth.”

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Dec. 4, 2012: "George Foreman Tribute to Lyndon B. Johnson Scholarship" - The George Foreman Tribute to Lyndon Baines Johnson scholarship is a $6,000 award given to a journalism student from the University of Texas at Austin. George Foreman is a boxing champion, Olympic gold medal winner and celebrated pitchman. As a young man, he was inspired by President Lyndon Johnson and by RTDNF founder Barney Oldfield. In his autobiography "By George," Foreman credits LBJ's Job Corps program for rescuing him "from the gutter." He also thanks Barney Oldfield "for a lifetime of friendship, devotion, counsel, and wisdom. The world would be a far better place if everyone were lucky enough to have a friend like you."

2012 George Foreman Tribute to Lyndon B. Johnson Scholarship Winner - Cathryn Walker
 
Cathryn Marie Walker was born on Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland as the daughter of a naval officer. Born in the military she frequently moved, living in Maryland, California, Washington State, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Texas, where she graduated from Earl Warren High School in San Antonio with a 4.0 grade point average.
 
Cathryn attends the University of Texas at Austin where she is currently working towards a degree in broadcast journalism and a minor in global business foundations. She plans to study abroad to develop a global appreciation of world affairs in journalism.”
 
View some of Cathryn's work at:
 
“On behalf of my family and me, I thank the Radio Television Digital News Foundation for awarding me this scholarship. As a young journalist it is at times difficult to know whether your stories are being heard. The long nights editing in front of a computer, endless days setting up interviews, and the frantic scurrying from one location to another are in vain if the final story is not shared. This award is proof that it is all worth it. I am excited and further motivated knowing that the voices of those in my stories have been heard. As a journalist I thank you for taking the time to recognize my work, and as a daughter and sister I thank you for offering this opportunity for my family and me.”

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Dec 5. 2012 -"Abe Schechter Graduate Scholarship" - Abe Schechter, a true pioneer of radio news, became the first vice president of news for NBC. He began his career in newspapers, then moved to radio. During World War II, he became senior public relations officer for General MacArthur. He eventually returned to NBC where he helped create the Today show. From there, he became part owner of the Mutual Broadcasting System. In the 1960s Schechter founded a PR firm that he and his business partner, former RTDNF Trustee George Glazer subsequently sold to Hill & Knowlton. Schechter and his wife died in a car accident in 1989, and this $2,000 scholarship was established in his memory.

2012 Abe Schechter Graduate Scholarship Winner - Heather Martino
 
Heather Martino is a Health and Science Reporting major at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, where she works as the Digital Media Assistant. She also holds a B.S./M.A. in Diplomacy and International Relations from Seton Hall University, where she managed an award winning international news radio program on WSOU 89.5 FM.
 
Heather’s interest in global health studies stems from her work as the Web Design and Social Media Editor for the Journal of Global Health Governance. She is currently pursuing a career in broadcast journalism, and hopes to raise awareness of global and public health concerns in developing nations.”
 
View some of Heather's work at:

www.heathermartino.com

 
“It is an honor to receive the Abe Schechter Graduate Scholarship from the Radio Television Digital News Foundation, as these funds will be of great asset to my studies at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.
 
My previous studies in Diplomacy and International Relations may seem like a deviation from journalism, but throughout my time as a graduate and undergraduate student at Seton Hall University I actively pursued radio. As the Executive Producer for the Global Current, WSOU 89.5 FM’s award winning international news radio program, I used the power of broadcast to raise awareness of headlines making news around the world. Some of the topics I covered included the earthquake in Haiti, honor killings, diaspora terror networks and international child abduction, to name a few. In addition to performing all of the recording and editing in Protools, I also managed my own blog, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and podcast components for the show, illustrating my capacity for understanding the many elements of broadcast and interactive journalism.
 
At the CUNY J-School, I am honing those skills to further develop my reporting sensibilities and produce meaningful work. In just a few short weeks I’ve produced numerous clips, including an interview with a recently returned Marine Staff Sargent regarding the insider attacks in Afghanistan. Prior to the presidential election, I also interviewed Terrance Grado, the Director of National and State Policy at Generation Opportunity, a nonpartisan organization that seeks to educate, organize and mobilize 18 to 29 year olds on immediate and long-term economic challenges facing the nation. The ability to cover timely topics and the access to equipment and multimedia resources at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism is vital to pursuing a career in broadcast journalism.
 
Abe Schecter’s work supervising radio and press communications for war correspondents during World War II is an inspiration to me. My cousin, Mark Martino, is currently serving overseas in Afghanistan, and I hope my work here in the states will help to raise awareness of the importance of those fighting for our freedom, as well as the war correspondents covering their plight. I recently covered New York City’s Veterans Day Parade, and hope to work more closely with Iraq and Afghanistan veterans. I am deeply humbled and grateful to receive the Abe Schechter Graduate Scholarship from the Radio Television Digital News Foundation to support my studies in broadcast journalism.”

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Dec. 6, 2012:  "N.S. Bienstock Fellowship" - An award established in 1999 by N.S. Bienstock, Inc. owners, Richard Leibner and Carole Cooper. N.S. Bienstock has been a leading talent agency in news and reality-based programming for more than 35 years and is a long-time member of RTDNA. This award recognizes a promising minority journalist in radio or television news.
 
In addition to the $2,500 award, winners of the N.S. Bienstock Fellowship receive an expenses paid trip to the Excellence in Journalism Conference.
 
2012 N.S. Bienstock Fellowship Winner - Alexis Morgan

Alexis Morgan is currently attending the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Originally from the nation's capital, she recently graduated from Penn State with a degree in broadcast journalism. 
 
Alexis has been an anchor at the Centre County Report, a sideline reporter for the Big Ten Network as well as a contributor to USA Today College and Psychology Today.”
 
View some of Alexis' work at: 
 
“Receiving the N.S. Bienstock Fellowship is like a dream come true for me and it represents that hard work doesn't go unnoticed. With education-related debt rising in America, it's imperative that organizations like RTDNA strive to provide funding for higher education. I'm so pleased to accept this award to continue with my studies that will hopefully lead to a bright future in the world of journalism.”

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Dec. 7, 2012: "Lou and Carole Prato Sports Reporting Scholarship"

Lou Prato was RTDNA treasurer from 1981 to 2001 and served as secretary of RTDNF's Board of Trustees until 2006. Prato's friends and colleagues have endowed an RTDNF scholarship in honor of Lou and his wife, Carole. The scholarship provides a $1,000 tuition grant to a deserving student who is planning a career as a sports reporter in television or radio. Lou has worked as a news director, a journalism professor, a consultant, and Director of the Penn State All Sports Museum. Lou and his wife Carole live near his alma mater, Penn State University. He is the author of The Penn State Football Encyclopedia.

2012 Lou and Carole Prato Sports Reporting Scholarship Winner - Katie Gillen 

Ever since Katie Gillen did the morning announcements in Middle School she knew she wanted to work in television. Watching sporting events with my family and attending them helped her decide to pursue Sports Reporting at the University of Florida. 
 
At the University of Florida Katie spent her time reporting on sporting events and serving as a sports anchor during the evening newscast. When Katie was not working around Sports she spent her time working with clubs on campus like the local chapters of the Radio Television Digital News Association and National Broadcasting Society. Katie plans to continue covering sports upon graduation in May 2013. 
 
To view a sample of Katie's work visit:
 
 
“I am greatly honored to receive the Lou and Carole Sports Reporting Scholarship. It is even more special for me to receive this scholarship because of the shared passion for College Athletics I have with the Prato family. Thanks to the Radio Television Digital News Foundation for bestowing this honor.”

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Dec. 10, 2012: "The Carole Simpson Scholarship" - Carole Simpson is a former member of the Radio Television Digital News Foundation Board of Trustees. She established the Carole Simpson Scholarship to encourage and help minority students overcome hurdles along their career path. Carole Simpson Scholarship winners are working as reporters, producers and anchors in television and radio stations across the country.
 
2012 Carole Simpson Scholarship Winner - Dakarai Turner

Dakarai is an undergraduate student majoring in broadcast journalism at DePaul University in Chicago. He’s gained immeasurable experience interning at WMAQ, NBC 5 Chicago and WFLD, FOX 32 News. His passion and desire to learn anything and everything about TV news and the world and people around him, whether it be in the classroom or reporting in the field, pushes him higher and further every day. Dakarai’s passionate about international and U.S. current events, news and politics. He reaches every day to achieve his dreams of serving the eventual community in which he works and in his hometown Seattle while working at a top news network.

View some of Dakarai's work at:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7y2TE_T6hUA

"To me, this scholarship is more than the honor. I pay my own way through school, and sometimes the bills and financial uncertainties associated with being a “struggling college student” can be overwhelming. I’ve always worked to make sure that bills are paid, books are bought and there’s food in the refrigerator – sometimes even multiple jobs over 40 hours per week while taking full time classes. Sometimes, though, things are tough. Bills may be paid, but sometimes the food may not be bought because of it. This money will go a long way in helping me to pay for everything that I need to, enabling me to focus even more on school and continuing to reach harder and further for my dreams. Besides that, receiving a scholarship named in honor of Carole Simpson, a pioneer in the very news business I hope to occupy – as an African-American – makes it that much more important. I am honored to be named the 2012 recipient for the Radio Television Digital News Foundation Carole Simpson Scholarship. To the Board of Directors, president and Ms. Simpson herself, thank you very much for honoring me with this prestigious award."

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Dec. 11, 2012: "Pete Wilson Scholarship" - The Pete Wilson Journalism Scholarship was established in 2007 by Wilson's friends and colleagues. The scholarship is granted to an undergraduate or graduate journalism student from the Bay area who shares Wilson's commitment to ethical, responsible journalism.

2012 Pete Wilson Undergraduate Scholarship Winner - Summer Dashe

Summer Dashe has dreamed of becoming a broadcast news reporter since she was a toddler. In high school she interned at The Danville Weekly. After graduating, Dashe moved to Texas to pursue a degree in Journalism and a minor in Ethics at Southern Methodist University where she became heavily involved in SMU-TV. 
 
In January 2012, she traveled to Rwanda to conduct interviews and film about women’s education issues post-genocide. During the summer of 2012 she returned to The Bay Area for an internship with KTVU Channel 2 News. 
 
Summer is currently a staff reporter at The Dallas Morning News. Dashe looks forward to graduating in May 2013 and can’t wait to tell stories and report the news wherever her career takes her.

View some of Summer's work at:

www.SummerDashe.com

@summerdashe

“I’ve wanted to pursue a career in journalism since I was very young and my parents have always been incredibly supportive of that dream. Earning this scholarship is a small way I can contribute to my education and thank them for the wonderful life they have given me. I’m deeply grateful to be recognized for the work that has meant so much to me my whole life. I’ll be honored to continue my career living up to Pete Wilson’s legacy of responsible and ethical journalism.”

2012 Pete Wilson Graduate Scholarship Winner - Casey Capachi

Casey Capachi is in her final year as a student at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism where she is focusing in Television and Multimedia. She is a Multimedia Graduate Student Researcher and a Kaiser Health Policy Journalism Fellow.
 
Her stories have appeared in such places as The Plain Dealer, The Bay Citizen, Contra Costa Times, and SFGate. Casey has worked on reports for NBC Nightly News, the
TODAY Show, ABC7′s 7 On Your Side (KGO-TV), and Channel 2 News (KTVU). She is a contributor to the Mobile Reporting Field Guide, which is available in iTunes.
Casey has received awards from the Sacramento Press Club and the Asian American Journalists Association.
 
Her favorite place to be is in a newsroom when there is breaking news.

View some of Casey's work at:

www.caseycapachi.com

“I remember watching Pete Wilson deliver the news on television as a child growing up in the Bay Area. As a former intern at KGO-TV, I know Pete’s contribution to reporting in California is missed to this day and to receive this award in his name means so much to me.”

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Dec. 12, 2012: "Presidents Scholarship" - Two $1,000 awards given in honor of former RTDNA Presidents Theodore Koop, Bruce Dennis, James McCulla, John Salisbury, Bruce Palmer, Dick Cheverton, Jim Byron, Ben Chatfield and John Hogan.

2012 Presidents Scholarship Winner - Brandon Goldner

Brandon Goldner is an award-winning junior broadcast journalism major at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism. He’s worked as a summer reporter for KVRR-TV in Fargo, North Dakota; a teen anchor/reporter for WMAR-TV in Baltimore; a news intern for WBAL-TV in Baltimore; and he was one of the youngest interns in the history of NBC News’ Meet the Press. He’s currently an EMMY award-winning director at his college’s T.V. station and is serving his second term as co-president of his school’s Society of Professional Journalists chapter.

View some of Brandon's work at:
Having attended two Excellence in Journalism conferences, I have seen first-hand the amazing and impactful work of RTDNA. It's truly an honor to receive the President's Scholarship from RTDNA. My family will soon be confronting the challenge of handling two college tuitions: mine and my younger brother's tuition. I'm beyond thrilled and humbled to receive this scholarship as it will help alleviate the financial burden soon to face my family.
 
2012 Presidents Scholarship Winner - Joe Bruno
 
Joe Bruno is a junior, broadcast journalism major at Elon University. He is the News Director of Elon Local News, Elon University’s student newscast. With ELN, Joe has had the opportunity to report at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, anchor a 7-hour live election show and interview President Clinton. He is a former intern at WFMZ-TV in Allentown, Pennsylvania and WMGM-TV in Atlantic City, New Jersey. His interests include breaking news, political and investigative journalism, enterprise reporting and dynamic producing. After graduation he wishes to be a reporter at a local TV station. 

View some of Joe's work at:
 
"It is truly an honor to receive the Presidents Scholarship from the Radio Television Digital News Foundation. Receiving this scholarship will allow me to continue to tell stories to the Elon community and work towards my goal of working in the news industry after graduation."


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Dec. 12, 2012: "Jacque Minnotte Health Reporting Fellowship" - This award recognizes excellence in health or medical television and radio reporting.
 
2012 Jacque Minnotte Health Reporting Fellowship Winner - Lara Salahi

Lara Salahi is an award-winning multimedia journalist and contributor to ABC News and the Boston Globe. 
 
Lara is a content producer for the online breaking news and feature site of the Boston Globe, Boston.com. She is the founder and author of the site's online column Ultra Sound Pregnancy, which takes a closer look at trends on fertility, pregnancy, and delivery. She also writes for the weekly "Be Well" section of the Boston Globe which analyzes the latest scientific studies to offer a brief and simple look at the findings and what it means for you.  
 
Lara shoots, writes, and edits her own stories. She has also created, contributed to, and manages numerous websites. She has worked in local news, network and cable television, international print, and documentary film, and has been featured on numerous news sites and blogs. 
 
She field produces pieces in the New England area for ABC News shows including Good Morning America and World News with Diane Sawyer. Lara previously worked full-time for ABC News' Medical Unit, where she helped produce digital and on-air health stories.  
 
Lara received a dual undergraduate degree from Boston University in Broadcast Journalism and International Relations with concentration in Middle East and North Africa foreign policy and security studies, along with a minor in French. She also has a master's degree in Health Communication from Emerson College. Lara travels extensively and is fluent in Armenian, Arabic, and French.

View samples of Lara's work at:

www.larasalahi.com

“I am humbled to receive the Jacque Minnotte Health Reporting Fellowship. This fellowship is affirmation that my enthusiasm and passion for accurately reporting medical stories has not gone unrecognized. I am committed to sharing compelling health stories with the public, and this fellowship serves as motivation for me to continue working in this field.”

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Dec. 17, 2012: "Mike Reynolds Scholarship" - Mike Reynolds, who died in 1988 of a brain tumor at age 45, was assignment editor and then managing editor at KCCI-TV in Des Moines, IA. Trustees of the fund to honor his memory require applicants for this award to be enrolled in journalism school and have good writing ability, excellent grades, a dedication to the news business, strong interest in pursuing a career in electronic journalism and a demonstrated need for financial assistance. The winner receives $1,000.

2012 Mike Reynolds Scholarship Winner  - Sarah Sax

Sarah Sax is a junior studying broadcast and digital journalism at the University of Southern California.  She was selected to be a 2013-2014 Executive Producer of Annenberg TV News (ATVN)—USC’s daily, student-run news broadcast that covers local, national and international news.  Sax has also served as a multimedia journalist, art director and weather anchor for ATVN.  
 
As an ABC7 Online News Intern, Sax managed, researched and created multimedia content.  As an NBC4 Digital Channel Intern, Sax wrote scripts and edited footage that broadcasted on the show “Nonstop News L.A.”  Sax also had the opportunity to shadow reporters, inspiring her and affirming her passion for journalism.  Her journalistic goals are to educate her viewers and to inspire them to take action.

View some of Sarah's work at: www.sarahmsax.com 

"It is a thrill and honor to have been selected as the Mike Reynolds Journalism Scholarship recipient.  All my life, I have been building toward a career in journalism.  At age 10, I wrote about my power to change the world through small increments and spoke before an audience of 3,000.  Realizing how my writing influenced the public, I felt a duty to use my storytelling to make a difference in society.  As an all-platform journalist on my high school’s news broadcast team, I covered a wide range of stories—a high school student conquering bulimia; a Palos Verdes fire displacing hundreds of residents; and a perspective of war from the eyes of American soldiers.  It is the people I meet and the passion I feel when covering each story that fuel me to pursue a career in the journalism industry.  I am thankful that the Mike Reynolds Journalism Scholarship will help me continue my journey to becoming a reporter."

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Dec. 20, 2012: "Ed Bradley Scholarship"- In 1994, RTDNF presented the first Ed Bradley Scholarship. Since then, 21 young and aspiring journalists have received the award created by the late CBS News and 60 Minutes correspondent.

Ed Bradley received the Paul White Award from RTDNA in 2000. The Paul White Award recognizes an individual's lifetime commitment to excellence in journalism. Bradley received the First Amendment Award from RTDNF in 2005 in recognition of his support of the First Amendment rights guaranteed in the Constitution.

2012 Ed Bradley Scholarship Winner - Jacey Sisneros

Jacey Sisneros is a senior Broadcast Journalism major at Pepperdine University.  She is originally from Loveland, Colorado. She anchors for TV-32’s “Newswaves” and reports in Malibu as Pepperdine’s Senior Reporter.  As an intern at NBC Los Angeles this Fall, her passion for storytelling was further confirmed and she is eager to return to KNBC in the Spring for a second semester.  Jacey believes the human story is powerful and she is driven to communicate the stories that surround us to other people.  Upon graduation in April 2013, she hopes to begin her career as a television news reporter.

View some of Jacey's work at: www.jaceysisneros.com
 
"I am overwhelmed by the blessing it is to receive the Ed Bradley Scholarship.  This made it possible for me to finish my education at Pepperdine and pursue my dream of becoming a television news reporter and journalist.  In addition, to be given an award in honor of such a phenomenal journalist who left the mark that he did on this industry is a feeling unlike any other.  Ed Bradley's hard work, passion, and dedication to this industry are something I strive to attain.  What an honor and a blessing this is.  I am so grateful and hope someday I will be able to do the same for future journalists so this industry will continue to flourish.  Our world is a better place because of journalism and because of people like Ed Bradley.  He not only impacted the world with his stories, but is continuing to impact it by providing students like me with the ability to achieve goals and leave our own legacy behind."