MCLEAN, Va.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--TEGNA Inc. (NYSE: TGNA) and WXIA were honored today with a President’s Special Award by the National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation (NABEF). The award is part of NAB’s Celebration of Service to America Awards, recognizing outstanding community service by local broadcasters. The President’s Special Award was established in 2008 and is given periodically to recognize historic and extraordinary achievement by broadcasters.
The Atticus Team, TEGNA Media’s digital investigative unit out of WXIA in Atlanta, won for their digital episodic investigation “Charlie Foxtrot”, which uncovered the reasons behind the national spike in service member suicides. Shortly after the series ran, the Fairness for Veterans Act, which addressed many of the issues raised in “Charlie Foxtrot”, was passed and signed into law.
“I am incredibly proud of the work being done by our Atticus Team and our journalists across the country that brings awareness to causes and important issues impacting our communities,” said Dave Lougee, president, TEGNA Media. “What our journalists do everyday matters and it is more important than ever that we be an advocate for those in need. Quality, empowering and innovative journalism, like ‘Charlie Foxtrot’, makes a difference. Congratulations to our Atticus Team on this well-deserved honor.”
“Charlie Foxtrot” examined the impact of war, the mental health of soldiers returning home from battle and the military policy that kicks service members out when they attempt to take their own life. The multi-part series debuted across TEGNA Media’s digital platforms. Every station also ran a portion of the series on-air, with many localizing the story and showing the direct impact government policies are having on service members in their community.
In December, the Atticus Team and TEGNA held an event on Capitol Hill where “Charlie Foxtrot” was screened and members of Congress and participants in the series spoke about the need to safeguard veterans’ mental health. Shortly after the event, Congress passed, and the President later signed, the National Defense Authorization Act, which included the Fairness for Veterans Act.
As a result, the military is now required to consider mental health conditions for troops who receive less than honorable discharges giving tens of thousands of former service members access to life-saving medical treatment. If a service member does something the military considers undesirable, their mental health will now factor into any discharge review.
In addition to the President’s Special Award, WXIA’s Atticus Team was also named a finalist for NAB’s Service to Community Award for their digital investigation, “The Triangle”, which uncovered a more than 4000 percent increase in heroin-related deaths in the Atlanta suburbs over the past five years. “The Triangle” was TEGNA Media’s first digital, episodic investigation.
TEGNA Inc. (NYSE: TGNA) is comprised of a dynamic portfolio of media and digital businesses that provide content that matters and brands that deliver. TEGNA offers highly relevant, useful and smart content, when and how people need it, to make the best decisions possible. TEGNA Media includes 46 television stations and is the largest independent station group of major network affiliates in the top 25 markets, reaching approximately one-third of all television households nationwide. TEGNA Digital is comprised of Cars.com, the leading online destination for automotive consumers, CareerBuilder, a global leader in human capital solutions, and G/O Digital, a customized local digital marketing company. For more information, visit www.TEGNA.com.