ABC NEWS WINS TWO PEABODY AWARDS, MORE THAN ANY OTHER NEWS DIVISION
Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross & the ABC News Investigative Unit Honored for "Conduct Unbecoming," a Series of Reports that Revealed Unethical Behavior in Washington
Special Edition of "Primetime," "Out of Control: AIDS in Black America," Also Honored
ABC News won two Peabody Awards, more than any other news division, the University of Georgia's Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication announced today. The Peabody Board, who made the selections, said the winners represent "the best in electronic media for 2006."
ABC News' Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross and the Investigative Unit won for a year-long series of broadcast and online reports that revealed a pattern of unbecoming and unethical behavior in official Washington -- from Supreme Court justices to CIA officials to congressmen. "Brian Ross Investigates: Conduct Unbecoming" culminated in the revelation that Congressman Mark Foley was sending sexually explicit instant messages to high school students who had served as congressional pages. Mr. Ross and the Investigative Unit first reported on ABCNEWS.com's "The Blotter" questionable emails sent by Foley to a former page. That online report and further reporting on ABC News' broadcasts, including "World News with Charles Gibson" and "Nightline," prompted other pages to come forward with more sexually explicit messages from Foley, eventually leading to his resignation.
The Ross unit has also won a USC Annenberg Walter Cronkite Award, a National Headliner Award, and an Investigative Reporters and Editors Award for their reporting on the Foley story and continued coverage on "The Blotter" on ABCNEWS.com.
"Primetime" was recognized with a Peabody Award for a special edition, "Out of Control: AIDS in Black America." The hour, reported by "Nightline" co-anchor Terry Moran with a special segment featuring the late Peter Jennings, was the first national network television news documentary on the AIDS epidemic among African Americans -- an epidemic that is spreading fast, but that has attracted little consistent attention from leaders in public health, politics or religion. The program explored the reasons for and consequences of a shockingly underreported fact � that blacks, who make up 13% of the U.S. population, now account for more than 50% of new cases of HIV infection. The hour was produced by PJ Productions.
ABC News continues to distinguish itself in primetime with serious documentary hours. Recent broadcasts include: "North Korea: Inside the Shadows," "To Iraq and Back: Bob Woodruff Reports," "Waiting on the World to Change," "A Call to Action: Saving Our Children" and "State of the Union."
Visit http://www.peabody.uga.edu/news/pressrelease.asp?ID=142 for a complete list of Peabody Award winners.