October 06, 2008

alt.news 26:46 wins seven more Emmys

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Saturday night proved quite the accomplishment for alt.news 26:46, Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s award-winning half-hour alternative TV news magazine.

The student-produced series received seven Emmys Oct. 4 at the 2008 National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Mid-America Regional Chapter Emmy Awards in St. Louis. The seven Emmys the program won Saturday night are the most it has received in one year at the awards show. The program has earned a total of 23 Emmys; 21 from the Mid-America Regional Chapter, and two from the Chicago Midwest Chapter.

“It is clear we have established a dynasty; alt.news has been winning professional Emmys since 2001,” said Jan Thompson, an associate professor in radio-television who also serves as the show’s faculty adviser.

Alt.news 26:46 received 14 nominations in 11 categories in August. Nearly 750 entries in 85 categories competed for nominations, with an entry deadline at the end of April. The chapter is comprised of television markets primarily in Arkansas, Illinois and Missouri, and surrounding designated market areas, or DMA’s, according to event organizers. The competition included local professional stations.

“Alt.news 26:46 has consistently produced high -quality programming for the past 10 years,” said Gary P. Kolb, dean of the College of Mass Communication and Media Arts. “Their continued success in the Professional Emmy competition this year is yet more evidence of their talent and creative spirit. They are a critical component of our undergraduate experience in the College and make us all very proud.

“The entire Saluki community benefits from their success and the exposure it brings the University and college,” Kolb said. “The recognition our students receive in competitions like this is our best recruiting tool. There is no other student-produced program in the nation that has consistently won awards in professional competition. They are the best.”

Phylis W. Johnson, associate professor and interim department chair of the Department of Radio-Television, emphasized these awards are professional Emmys where the competition includes professional stations.

“The students in alt.news never cease to amaze me with their incredible talent and drive,” Johnson said. “These awards are well-deserved and hard-earned, and provide an example to other students that college is much more than a sandbox. These awards capture the professionalism and creativity underlying the mission of alt.news.”

Thompson “should be commended for her outstanding work with these students, and encouraging them to raise the bar, continually,” Johnson said.

Alt.news 26:46 airs on WSIU-TV. The first episode for season No. 10 aired Saturday. Reruns are at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays, also on WSIU-TV. The second episode for this season is at 10 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 2. More information is available at http://www.altnews2646.com/

Alt.news 26:46 2008 NATAS Mid-America Regional Chapter Emmy winners are:

* Timothy P. Wilkerson, a senior with a double major in radio-television and cinema& photography from Crystal Lake, for his “Don LaFontaine: The Voice,” in the arts/entertainment-program feature category. LaFontaine, 68, died Sept. 1.

• James L. Milner a May 2008 bachelor’s degree graduate in radio-television from Springfield, and Jonathan R. Gravatt, a junior in radio-television from Carbondale, for their segment, “Body Worlds,” in the science/environment category.

Sean Q. Brown, a senior in radio-television from Deerfield, for his segment, “Angola Prison Rodeo,” in the human interest-program story/feature category.

Brown, for his segment, “Angola Prison Rodeo,” in the director/post-production category.

Brown and Wilkerson for “Alt.news 26:46,” in the magazine program category.

Scott W. Blair, a junior in MCMA undecided from Glenview, in the on-camera talent/performer-host category.

  • Blair, for “alt.news 26:46 news promo” in the writer/spot length category.

Other alt.news 26:46 personnel who received nominations in August were:

Jay B. Carey, a senior in radio-television from De Soto, and Kelly E. Reed, a sophomore with a double major in cinema & photography and journalism from Grayslake, for their segment, “World’s Fastest Drummer,” in the arts/entertainment-program feature category.

Adam L. Slutsky, a junior in cinema & photography from Deerfield, and Carey, for “alt.news 26:46,” in the writer/program category.

Andrew D. Kastler, a May 2008 bachelor’s degree graduate in radio-television from Waterloo, Iowa, and Todd M. Cima, a May 2008 bachelor’s degree graduate in radio-television from Cantrall, for “Blue Man Group: Live from the SIU Arena,” in the director/post-production category.

Cima and Kastler for “Blue Man Group: Live from the SIUC Arena,” in the editor -- program/program feature category.

Brown, Wilkerson, Carey, Milner and Kastler for “alt.news 26:46,” in the graphic arts-graphics-program/news category.

Cima for “Talk Backs from Horizon Wireless,” in the writer/spot length (Promo, PSA, Commercial) category.

• Blair and Wilkerson for “magichugs.com” in the advanced media – arts/entertainment category.