82nd Annual Peabody Awards announced representing the best in storytelling

The Peabody Awards Board of Jurors unveiled all 30 programs representing the most compelling and empowering stories released in broadcasting and streaming media during 2021. Of the 30 winners, PBS led with six, followed by HBO/HBO Max with four, Netflix with three, and Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and The New York Times each with two. Additional winning networks and platforms include ABC, FX, KUSA, NBC News, NPR, Peacock, Rumble Strip, and VICE.

The Peabody Awards were founded in 1940 at Grady College and are still based in Athens today.

“Whether exposing injustice, detailing uncomfortable truths, or making us laugh uncontrollably, all of the winners demonstrated how to tell a compelling story,” said Jeffrey Jones, executive director of Peabody. “With an ongoing pandemic, political obstructionism, and senseless wars continuing to take and disrupt lives, these programs pushed past many obstacles to tell important stories that will stand the test of time. Peabody is proud to honor their incredible work.”

Chosen unanimously by a board of 19 jurors, the Peabody 30 are the best from over 1,200 entries submitted from television, streaming media, and podcasts/radio. Entertainment winners like FX’s “Reservation Dogs,” Peacock’s “We Are Lady Parts,” and HBO Max’s “Sort Of” gave audiences hilarious, artistically evocative, and complex experiences of communities historically underrepresented and stereotyped in television. Documentary winners such as Hulu’s “Summer of Soul (…Or When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised),” PBS’s “Mr. SOUL!”, and Netflix’s “High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America” highlighted Black cultural history as pivotal to American storytelling. The nine news winners this year covered numerous pressing issues, including reporting of the January 6th insurrection, Afghanistan’s past and future, abortion access, and trans rights. PBS’s “January 6th Reporting” and The New York Times’s “Day of Rage: How Trump Supporters Took the U.S. Capitol” documented a turning point in American democracy, while local news outlets were named winners for their investigations into deadly use of the prone position in arrests (KUSA), the lack of public resources for single parents facing housing insecurity (NBC Bay Area), and the erosion of civil liberties for protesters (ABC15 Arizona).

The 30 winners of the 82nd Annual Peabody Awards were named during a multi-day virtual celebration June 6-9. Video announcements and acceptances can be viewed on the 2022 Peabody Video Acceptance Videos webpage. Celebrity presenters announced each winner via a short video which included remarks from the winners. The full list of winners and presenters is below.

Peabody previously announced Fresh Air with Terry Gross as the year’s Peabody Institutional Award winner. This distinctive honor recognizes institutions and organizations, as well as series and programs, for their enduring body of work and their iconic impact on both the media landscape and the public imagination. Dan Rather was also named winner of the Peabody Career Achievement Award. Dozhd, also known as TV Rain, the independent Russian television channel blocked by state authorities for its coverage of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, won the Peabody Award for Journalistic Integrity. Peabody also made a special commendation in recognition of journalists killed globally in the last year.

In addition to these honorees, the 30 winners the 82nd Peabody Awards are:

Arts
  • “Summer of Soul (…Or When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised)” (Hulu / Searchlight Pictures / Onyx Collective)
Entertainment
  • “Bo Burnham: Inside” (Netflix)
  • “Dopesick” (Hulu)
  • “Hacks” (HBO/HBO Max)
  • “Reservation Dogs” (FX)
  • “Sort Of” (CBC/HBO Max)
  • “The Underground Railroad” (Amazon Prime Video)
  • “We Are Lady Parts” (Peacock and Channel 4)
  • “The Wonder Years” (ABC)
Documentary
  • “Exterminate All the Brutes” (HBO/HBO Max)
  • “High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America” (Netflix)
  • “In the Same Breath” (HBO/HBO Max)
  • “Mayor” (PBS)
  • “Mr. SOUL!” (PBS)
  • “My Name is Pauli Murray” (Amazon Prime Video)
  • “Philly D.A.” (PBS)
  • “A Thousand Cuts” (PBS / GBH / FRONTLINE)
Podcast/Radio
  • “Finn and the Bell” (Rumble Strip)
  • “Southlake” (NBC News)
  • “Throughline: Afghanistan: The Center of the World” (NPR)
News
  • “The Appointment” (ABC News)
  • “Day of Rage: How Trump Supporters Took the U.S. Capitol” (The New York Times)
  • “Escaping Eritrea” (PBS / GBH / FRONTLINE)
  • “January 6th Reporting” (PBS NewsHour)
  • “NBC Bay Area: ‘The Moms of Magnolia Street’ & ‘No Man’s Land: Fighting for Fatherhood in a Broken System’” (NBC Bay Area)
  • “Politically Charged” (ABC15 Arizona)
  • “PRONE” (KUSA)
  • “‘So They Know We Existed’: Palestinians Film War in Gaza” (The New York Times)
  • “Transnational” (VICE News Tonight)
Children’s & Youth
  • “City of Ghosts” (Netflix)

Melissa McCarthy, Morgan Freeman, John Legend and More to Present the 82nd Annual Peabody Awards

Peabody announced that Melissa McCarthy, Morgan Freeman, John Legend, Kevin Bacon, H.E.R., Ethan Hawke, Jon Stewart, Hasan Minhaj, Riz Ahmed, LeVar Burton, Jenny Slate, Malcolm Gladwell, Adam Scott, and more will present the winners of the 82nd Annual Peabody Awards. The 30 winners will be announced on the Peabody Awards’ social media channels June 6-9. A celebrity presenter will announce each winner via a short video that will include an acceptance speech.

The Awards presentations will take place between noon and 2:30 EST each day on the following platforms:

Twitter:           @PeabodyAwards

Instagram:      @PeabodyAwards

Facebook:       Peabody Awards

Website:          https://peabodyawards.com/

Hashtags:         #PeabodyAwards #StoriesThatMatter

This announcement follows the recent news that Peabody has honored “Fresh Air with Terry Gross” with the Institutional Award (presented by Stephen Colbert), Dan Rather with the Career Achievement Award (presented by Dolly Parton), and TV Rain/Dozhd with the Journalistic Integrity Award.

The full list of presenters for the 82nd Annual Peabody Awards includes Riz Ahmed, Christiane Amanpour, Kevin Bacon, W. Kamau Bell, LeVar Burton, Jelani Cobb, Stephen Colbert, Jay Ellis, Tan France, Morgan Freeman, Malcolm Gladwell, Ethan Hawke, Ibram X. Kendi, H.E.R., Rep. Adam Kinzinger, John Legend, Lisa Ling, Melissa McCarthy, Hasan Minhaj, Stanley Nelson, Soledad O’Brien, Dolly Parton, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Rep. Adam Schiff, Adam Scott, Amanda Seales, Jenny Slate, Joey Soloway, Bryan Stevenson, and Jon Stewart.

The full list of the 60 nominees for the 82nd Annual Peabody Awards is available here.

“Fresh Air with Terry Gross” wins Peabody’s Institutional Award

Peabody announced that “Fresh Air with Terry Gross,” the estimable cultural interview radio and podcast program, has won the Institutional Award. Stephen Colbert presented Terry Gross and the Fresh Air team with the honor via video. Fresh Air, which originated from WHYY in Philadelphia and broadcasts daily through NPR, is being recognized for its rich conversation for over 35 years, becoming the indispensable place for listeners to engage with many of the most beloved artists who have shaped society over the last century. Selected by the Peabody Board of Jurors, the Institutional Award recognizes institutions and organizations, as well as series and programs, for their enduring body of work and their iconic impact on both the media landscape and the public imagination.

The University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication has been the home of Peabody since its founding in 1940.

“Gross possesses what musicians often call “big ears”—a habit of being deeply immersed in the play of the conversation at hand through acute listening. Her mastery of dialogue is seen in questions that unearth the rudiments and alchemy of artistry,” said Jeffrey Jones, executive director of Peabody. “Fresh Air is just that as an interview show. The mission is the soul of art, not the spectacle of celebrity.”

Terry Gross began hosting Fresh Air in 1975 and has since conducted over 13,000 interviews with a wide array of celebrities, artists, politicians, showrunners, musicians, and writers. Part conversationalist, part therapist, part oral historian, Gross leans heavily into her guests with an unassuming intimacy that often evokes unexpected and, at times, uninterrogated feelings or memories. She routinely displays genuine interest in what makes artists great, not just as creators, but also as individuals whose personal history and humanity inspire the art itself. With her distinctive style and insightful interviews, Gross and her longtime co-executive producer Danny Miller have made Fresh Air one of the top audio programs in the world.

Gross began her radio career in 1973 at public radio station WBFO in Buffalo, New York. There she hosted and produced several arts, women’s and public affairs programs, including This Is Radio, a live, three-hour magazine program that aired daily. Two years later, she joined the staff of WHYY-FM in Philadelphia as producer and host of Fresh Air, then a local, daily interview and music program. In 1985, WHYY-FM launched a weekly half-hour edition of “Fresh Air with Terry Gross,” which was distributed nationally by NPR. Since 1987, a daily, one-hour national edition of Fresh Air has been produced by WHYY-FM. The program became the first non-drive time show in public radio history to reach more than five million listeners each week in fall 2008, a presidential election season. The series previously won a 1993 Peabody Award.

Recent winners of the Institutional Award include ARRAY, The Simpsons, 60 Minutes, Sesame Street, “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” Kartemquin Films, “FRONTLINE,” and ITVS.

The Career Achievement Award will be announced on May 19, and the 30 winners of the Peabody Awards will be named during a multi-day virtual celebration from June 6-9.

Peabody Awards announce nominees for broadcasting and streaming media in 2021

The Peabody Awards Board of Jurors announced the 60 nominees selected to represent the most compelling and empowering stories released in broadcasting and streaming media during 2021. The nominees were chosen by a unanimous vote of 19 jurors from over 1,200 entries from television, podcasts/radio and the web in entertainment, news, documentary, arts, children’s/youth, and public service.

“Following yet another turbulent year, Peabody is proud to honor an array of stories that poignantly and powerfully help us make sense of the challenges we face as a nation and world,” said Jeffrey Jones, executive director of Peabody. “Demonstrating the immense power of stories, these nominees exposed our societal failures and celebrated the best of the human spirit. They are all worthy of recognition, and Peabody is proud to celebrate them.”

Offering engaging content by expert storytellers from underrepresented groups, this year’s nominated programs encompass a wide range of pressing issues, including reporting of the January 6th insurrection, Afghanistan’s past and future, abortion access, trans rights, and the continuing struggle over policing and criminal justice reform, among many other topics. The Peabody Awards are based at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia.

“Peabody is thrilled to continue its tradition of honoring the very best in storytelling, particularly from diverse and emerging voices,” added Monica Pearson, chairperson of the Peabody Board of Jurors. “While covering a wide array of pressing world issues and powerful human themes, all of these programs demonstrate how great art and great journalism help us see truth more clearly.”

Of the 60 nominations, PBS and HBO lead with thirteen and eight, respectively, followed by Hulu and Netflix (five each), The New York Times and NBC (four), and ABC, Amazon Prime, BBC, and SHOWTIME (two each).

The 30 winners of the 82nd annual Peabody Awards will be named during a multi-day virtual celebration from June 6th through June 9th. Celebrity presenters will announce each winner via a short video which will include remarks from the winners. Videos will be shared June 6-9, between 9 a.m. PT and 10:30 a.m. PT each day on the following platforms:

The Peabody Award Nominees, listed by category and in alphabetical order (network/platform in parentheses) are:

ARTS
  • “Summer of Soul (…Or When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised)”

Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson’s rousing directorial debut chronicles the seminal 1969 celebration of Black history, music, and fashion, The Harlem Cultural Festival, through interviews and largely forgotten footage of performances from Stevie Wonder, Nina Simone, Sly & the Family Stone, and many more.

A Vulcan Productions Inc. Production, In Association with Concordia Studio, Play/Action Pictures, LarryBilly Productions, Produced by Mass Distraction Media and RadicalMedia. (Searchlight Pictures, Onyx Collective, Hulu)

CHILDREN’S & YOUTH
  • “City of Ghosts”

The “Ghost Club” ventures around Los Angeles interviewing ghosts and learning about the city’s multicultural history in this joyful, educational, and wildly entertaining animated series.

A Netflix Original Series (Netflix)

  • “Colin in Black & White”

Colin Kaepernick narrates this youthful, coming-of-age drama about his upbringing as a football star aspiring to greatness, grappling with his racial identity, and learning to stand up for his beliefs.

ARRAY for Netflix (Netflix)

DOCUMENTARIES
  • “9to5: The Story of a Movement”              

Directors Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar tell the story of the real-life secretarial labor movement that inspired the hit 1980 film and changed American offices forever.

Working Women Documentary Project LLC, ITVS (PBS)

  • “Attica”

Through new interviews with survivors of the 1971 uprising at the Attica Correctional Facility, as well as observers, experts, and government officials, this documentary sheds new light on the violent standoff between Black and Latino inmates and law enforcement officers while highlighting the ongoing need for prison reform.

SHOWTIME Documentary Films Presents A Firelight Films Production, In Association with Topic Studios (SHOWTIME)

  • “Changing the Game”

High school athletics have become a key battleground in the fight for trans rights, and this documentary highlights several who are not only competing at top levels but also challenging gender boundaries.

Hulu, Superfilms Productions, Foton Pictures, Glanzrock Productions (Hulu)

  • “Downing of a Flag”

PBS’s two-part series delves into how the Confederate flag has affected the people, politics, and perception of South Carolina—and how this reflects America’s continued reckoning with its racial history.

South Carolina ETV, Strategic Films, Susie Films (PBS)

  • “Exterminate All the Brutes”

In this four-part docuseries, filmmaker Raoul Peck (“I Am Not Your Negro”) explores the devastating effects of European colonialism, from Native American genocide and American slavery forward, through its effects today. It unpacks three seminal works—Sven Lindqvist’s “Exterminate All the Brutes,” Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz’s “An Indigenous People’s History of the United States,” and Michel-Rolph Trouillot’s “Silencing the Past—Exterminate All the Brutes”—through documentary footage, archival material, animation, and interpretive scripted scenes.

HBO/HBO Max (HBO/HBO Max)

  • “High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America”

This sumptuous four-episode series traces the ways Black food has influenced American culture and history, guided by host and chef Stephen Satterfield.

A One Story Up Production for Netflix (Netflix)

  • “In the Same Breath”

This eye-opening work, full of shockingly powerful footage, traces the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic as it begins in Wuhan, China, and shows how cover-ups and misinformation scrambled worldwide response even as some sought to call attention to the truth.

HBO Documentary Films Presents a Motto Pictures/Little Horse Crossing the River/ Little Lantern Company Production (HBO/HBO Max)

  • “Life of Crime 1984-2020”

For 36 years, documentarian Jon Alpert followed three friends from Newark, New Jersey, as they struggled with addiction, prison stints, rehab, employment, and family. The result is a heartbreaking portrait of the toll that drugs can take on a life.

HBO Documentary Films in association with DCTV (HBO/HBO Max)

  • “Lynching Postcards: ‘Token of a Great Day’”

This chilling short film confronts America’s shocking racist history through the postcards attendees bought, sold, and sent to celebrate their time at the public lynchings of their Black neighbors in the 19th and 20th centuries—a work made all the more vital by the fact that U.S. President Joe Biden only just recently signed an anti-lynching law.

MTV Documentary Films, Firelight Films, Peralta Pictures (MTV Documentary Films)

  • “Mayor”

Toggling between moments of banal bureaucracy and terrifying warfare, filmmaker David Osit captures the rhythms of life under occupation for Musa Hadid, the mayor of Palestine’s de facto capital of Ramallah.

American Documentary: POV (PBS)

  • “Mr. SOUL!”

The behind-the-scenes story of “America’s first Black ‘Tonight Show,’” this celebratory film dives into the public television variety show “SOUL!”, which ran from 1968 to 1973. “SOUL!” producer and host Ellis Haizlip brought viewers an unapologetically Black experience, recognizing contemporary luminaries of Black literature, poetry, music, and politics.

Shoes In The Bed Productions, ITVS, Black Public Media (BPM) (PBS)

  • “My Name is Pauli Murray”

This documentary from the directors of “RBG,” Julie Cohen and Betsy West, illuminates the remarkable—and remarkably little-known—life of Pauli Murray, a nonbinary, Black lawyer, activist, and poet who influenced the work of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Thurgood Marshall.

Drexler Films, Storyville Films (Prime Video)

  • Nuclear Family”

In this three-part series, filmmaker Ry Russo-Young delves into her own upbringing by two lesbian mothers via sperm donor in the late 1970s and early ‘80s, a time when LGBTQ parents were rare. An unexpected lawsuit caused her to rethink the meaning of the word “family.”

HBO Documentary Films, Big Beach, Impact Partners, and Topic Studios present in association with Sustainable Films and BUNKER (HBO/HBO Max)

  • “Philly D.A.”

As riveting as any TV show, this eight-part docuseries introduces Larry Krasner, who spent 30 years fighting the district attorney’s office as a civil rights lawyer before he was elected to the position himself—and thus faces the challenge of his life, trying to change the system from within.

All Ages Productions, Department of Motion Pictures, ITVS (PBS)

  • “Procession”

This arresting and unusual film by Robert Greene demonstrates the healing power of art and friendship as a group of men process their sexual abuse at the hands of Catholic priests through fictionalized reenactments of their trauma.

A Netflix Documentary / A 4th Row Films Production in Partnership with Concordia Studios & Impact Partners in association with Artemis Rising Foundation (Netflix)

  • “The Queen of Basketball”

From executive producers Shaquille O’Neal and Stephen Curry comes this engrossing profile of Lucy Harris, who scored the first points in women’s Olympic basketball and was the first woman officially drafted into the National Basketball Association, but has remained widely unknown.

The New York Times / Breakwater Studios (The New York Times Op-Docs)

  • “Simple As Water”

Four Syrian families process the aftermath of war in this documentary from Megan Mylan, filmed over five years in five countries. The resulting film reveals how family bonds help us to survive the ravages of war, separation, and displacement.

HBO Documentary Films and Principe Productions in association with Inmaat Productions, JustFilms/Ford Foundation (HBO/HBO Max)

  • “Storm Lake”

As small-town newspapers wither and die in the internet age, the family who runs The Storm Lake Times in Iowa does everything they can to keep local journalism alive. This inspiring tale shows how hard it is, even for a Pulitzer Prize-winning paper that’s nationally renowned because of its unusual power, thanks to the Iowa presidential caucuses.

Whole Hog Films, LLC, ITVS (PBS)

  • “A Thousand Cuts”

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte is a master at weaponizing social media to spread disinformation in his own favor and against his detractors. This gripping film follows one of his prime targets, journalist Maria Ressa, as she battles him along with her news site Rappler.

FRONTLINE (PBS / GBH / FRONTLINE)

ENTERTAINMENT
  • “Bo Burnham: Inside”

Multi-faceted performer Bo Burnham offers up a comedy special for the pandemic age: Made entirely on his own during lockdown, this combination of monologue, song, and sketch reflects a time when so many wrestled with anxiety, existential dread, and loneliness, giving viewers a way to laugh and relate through the pain.

Netflix (Netflix)

  • “Dopesick”

Executive producers Danny Strong and Michael Keaton take viewers into the heart of the opioid crisis, showing how one company nefariously created the worst drug epidemic in American history through lies, PR, and good salesmanship. Also starring Keaton, Rosario Dawson, Peter Sarsgaard, and Kaitlyn Dever, the sprawling story includes the Sackler family operation behind the epidemic, the residents of a small Virginia mining community victimized by the false marketing, and the DEA agents caught in between.

Hulu, Danny Strong Productions, John Goldwyn Productions, The Littlefield Company, 20th Television (Hulu)

  • “Hacks”

In this hilarious and insightful series, Jean Smart plays an aging standup comic being sidelined from her longtime Vegas show. She begrudgingly hires a Gen Z comedy writer, played by Hannah Einbinder, who lost her job after a questionable tweet, allowing the women to work out generational differences in feminism, humor, and womanhood through their work together.

Universal Television, a division of Universal Studio Group, in association with Paulilu, First Thought Productions, Fremulon Productions, 3 Arts Entertainment (HBO/HBO Max)

  • “The Long Song”

PBS’s “Masterpiece” miniseries beautifully adapts Andrea Levy’s novel about the end of slavery in Jamaica, focusing on July, an enslaved woman on a sugarcane plantation who is unflinching in the face of her insufferable mistress, Caroline.

Heyday Television, which is part of Universal International Studios, a division of Universal Studio Group (PBS)

  • “Only Murders in the Building”

This one-of-a-kind mystery-comedy features the superstar, intergenerational trio of Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez playing lonely misfits in a posh New York City apartment building who join forces hoping to solve a murder in their complex—and make a true-crime podcast about it all.

Hulu, 20th Television (Hulu)

  • “Pen15”

Creator-stars Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle conclude their unique two-season middle school comedy as adults playing their 13-year-old selves in the year 2000. It’s as uncomfortable—and relatable—as ever.

Hulu, Awesomeness TV, Odenkirk Provissiero, Lonely Island Classics (Hulu)

  • “Reservation Dogs”

With a young cast full of fresh discoveries, this series follows the everyday lives of four indigenous teens in rural Oklahoma as they steal, scrimp, and save their way toward their dream life in faraway California.

FX Productions (FX)

  • “Sort Of”

This fully inhabited portrait of a floundering 20-something centers a nonbinary character, Sabi, but makes gender only one part of their overall search for identity as a Pakistani-Canadian nanny, bartender, sister, friend, and adult.

Sienna Films Inc (HBO Max)

  • “Station Eleven”

This post-apocalyptic drama based on Emily St. John Mandel’s novel follows several characters through a devastating flu pandemic and its aftermath 20 years later as they try to rebuild community through art, despite opposition from a violent cult with a charismatic leader.

HBO Max presents a Paramount Television Studios Production in association with Tractor Beam Productions, Shadowfox Productions, Stone Village Television, Inc., Pacesetter Productions, and Super Frog (HBO/HBO Max)

  • “The Underground Railroad”

Barry Jenkins created this fantasy/historical drama based on the book by Colson Whitehead, telling the magical realist tale of Cora, an enslaved woman in Georgia, riding an imagined underground railroad—trains and all—to freedom.

Plan B, PASTEL, Big Indie with Amazon Studios (Amazon Prime)

  • “We Are Lady Parts”

This fresh, feel-good comedy follows the lives and loves of a four-girl Muslim punk band in London, complete with rollicking performances of original songs (“Bashir With the Good Beard,” “Voldemort Under My Headscarf”) co-written by the show’s creator, Nida Manzoor, with her siblings.

Working Title Television, a part of Universal International Studios, a division of Universal Studio Group (Peacock)

  • “The Wonder Years”

This new take on the 1980s series of the same name centers a Black boy named Dean Williams as he comes of age in the late 1960s in Montgomery, Alabama. It’s the rare reboot to tackle serious issues, such as Martin Luther King Jr.’s death and the Civil Rights movement, while also allowing for sweet nostalgia.

20th Television (ABC)

  • “Yellowjackets”

An exceptional high school girls’ soccer team goes “Lord of the Flies” when their plane crashes in the wilderness in the 1990s, then reunites 25 years later in this chilling examination of female friendship and lingering trauma.

SHOWTIME Presents, Entertainment One (SHOWTIME)

NEWS
  • “Afghanistan: Documenting A Crucial Year

BBC World News America goes in-depth on the effort to end the United States’ longest war.

BBC World News (BBC World News America)

  • “American Insurrection”

This examination of far-right extremism in America traces the path from the deadly 2017 Charlottesville rally to the January 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, in a reporting collaboration among “Frontline,” ProPublica, and Berkeley Journalism’s Investigative Reporting Program.

FRONTLINE, ProPublica, and Berkeley Journalism’s Investigative Reporting Program (PBS / GBH / FRONTLINE)

  • “The Appointment”

A “Nightline” crew goes along on a young Texas woman’s journey across state lines to seek an abortion, showing the ways increasingly strict laws in some states require women to go to extremes in exercising their legal right to choose.

ABC News Nightline (ABC News Nightline)

  • “Day of Rage: How Trump Supporters Took the U.S. Capitol”

This short documentary forensic film is the culmination of a six-month investigation in which The New York Times compiled thousands of videos and police audio from the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol to form a complete picture of what happened that day.

The New York Times (The New York Times)

  • “Escaping Eritrea”

“Nightline” conducted an unprecedented investigation into the repressive regime of Eritrea, producing secret footage and interviews that reveal torture, unjust imprisonment, and forced conscription.

FRONTLINE, Channel 4 (PBS / GBH / FRONTLINE)

  • “The Healthcare Divide”

“Frontline” and NPR expose the inequalities in the American healthcare system exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, showing how financial pressures and uneven government support have furthered the differences between wealthy and poor hospitals and patients.

FRONTLINE, NPR, Investigative Reporting Workshop (PBS / GBH / FRONTLINE)

  • “Inside Yemen”

 PBS NewsHour’s special correspondent Jane Ferguson goes to the frontlines with Yemeni soldiers as they fight Iran-backed Houthi rebels after U.S. president Joe Biden announced an end to American support for the Saudi Arabia-led coalition.

PBS NewsHour (PBS NewsHour)

  • “January 6th Reporting”

“PBS NewsHour” correspondent Lisa Desjardins was the only journalist reporting live from inside the Capitol as insurrectionists stormed the building on January 6, 2021, to disrupt the counting of Electoral College votes that certified Joe Biden as the next President of the United States. Desjardins’ courageous reporting provided a vital document of a critical turning point in American democracy.

PBS NewsHour (PBS NewsHour)

  • “The Moms of Magnolia Street”

One of two pieces from NBC Bay Area that investigates the challenges of homeless parents. “The Moms of Magnolia Street” documents how a group of unhoused mothers in Oakland banded together to find—and fight for—a unique solution to the area’s affordability crisis.

NBC Bay Area (NBC Bay Area)

  • “Nima Elbagir: Human Rights Investigations in Ethiopia”

CNN’s chief international investigative correspondent, Nima Elbagir, exposed widespread human rights atrocities by Ethiopian and Eritrean troops in the Tigray region.

CNN, Elephant Media (CNN)

  • “No Man’s Land: Fighting for Fatherhood in a Broken System”

One of two pieces from NBC Bay Area that investigates the challenges of homeless parents. “No Man’s Land” follows several men as they try desperately to care for their children but are repeatedly turned away from homeless shelters and services because of inherent biases in the system against single fathers.

NBC Bay Area (NBC Bay Area)

  • “Politically Charged”

Arizona’s ABC15 investigated Phoenix police and the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office, uncovering evidence that officials invented a fictional gang and gave other false testimony to prosecute the activists protesting against them.

ABC15 Arizona (KNXV) (ABC15 Arizona (KNXV))

  • “PRONE”

Denver’s KUSA-TV spent two years investigating the use of the prone position in arrests across the country after George Floyd died handcuffed and facedown, pinned under an officer’s knee. The team—with contributions from reporters in eight other cities—found at least 130 other similar cases since 2010 and built a database documenting their findings, which could then be used by other news stations in other cities. After versions of the documentary aired in Denver and Minneapolis, both police departments mandated additional training about the dangers of this type of restraint.

KUSA (KUSA)

  • “‘So They Knew We Existed’: Palestinians Film War in Gaza”

Palestinians in Gaza used their phones to film the 11-day war there in May 2021 between Israel and Hamas. The New York Times spoke to some of them and shared their footage as well as their stories. As one said: “I removed the password from my phone so that if we didn’t make it out, and we were killed, people would know what happened to us. So they know we existed.”

The New York Times (The New York Times)

  • “Transnational”

This VICE series covers transgender communities around the world, from India’s only Quran school for trans Muslims and the Detroit ballroom scene to trans activists fighting for U.K. health coverage and Mexico’s first shelter built by and for trans people who are former sex workers.

VICE News (VICE News Tonight)

PODCAST/RADIO
  • “Blindspot: Tulsa Burning”

WNYC and the History Channel revisit the 1921 white supremacist mob attack on Tulsa’s thriving Black business district of Greenwood with the hindsight of a century past and renewed interest in the buried parts of America’s racial history.

The HISTORY Channel / WNYC Studios / KOSU (WNYC Studios)

  • “Dig: The Model City”

This joint effort between Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting and Newsy reports on how Louisville’s ambitious plans to transform police relations with the Black community disintegrated to the point that, five years later, the city became a national flashpoint when officers killed Breonna Taylor in her home. The investigation reveals critical mistakes that inform the ongoing national debate over police reform.

Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting and Newsy (WFPL News Louisville)

  • “Finn and the Bell”

Rumble Strip Vermont host Erica Heilman dives deep into the life of Finn Rooney, a teenager who died by suicide in 2020, and the small Vermont community he left behind struggling with the tragedy.

Rumble Strip (Rumble Strip)

  • “Half Vaxxed”

This WHYY series tells the riveting story of a 22-year-old with no healthcare experience who talked his way into a COVID-19 vaccine distribution deal in hopes of making millions. Instead, his company collapsed, leaving thousands waiting for vaccines that never came. This podcast considers how he ended up with so much power and whether he was a scam artist—or a mere incompetent opportunist.

WHYY and Billy Penn (WHYY)

  • “The Improvement Association”

Former President Donald Trump’s “Big Lie” is shot through a local lens as Serial Productions examines “a true story about election fraud” in Bladen County, North Carolina, and reveals the racial fault lines and coded messages at the heart of discussions about electoral legitimacy.

Serial Productions (The New York Times)

  • “The Lazarus Heist”

BBC goes deep on the sprawling, epic story of the hacking ring that began with the 2014 release of internal Sony emails that rocked Hollywood and was blamed on North Korea—but went much wider and deeper, including an attempt to steal a billion dollars.

Long Form Audio, BBC News for BBC World Service (BBC World Service)

  • “Mississippi Goddam: The Ballad of Billey Joe”

Reveal host Al Letson makes good on a promise to find out what really happened to Billey Joe Johnson Jr., a Black high schooler whose dreams of going to college and playing pro football ended when he died during a 2008 traffic stop. Authorities said he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound during the confrontation with a white sheriff’s deputy, but the boy’s family always had doubts.

Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX (public radio stations nationwide, the Reveal podcast, distributed by PRX)

  • “Radiotopia Presents: S***hole Country”

Radiotopia’s eight-part series features a young Bay Area woman, Afia Kaakyire, as she grapples with an intriguing dilemma: Should she move to her parents’ homeland of Ghana, where they’ll put her up in an apartment in their complex rent-free, or keep struggling to make ends meet as a creative worker in a vastly overpriced rental market in a country grappling with its racist past (and present)?

Radiotopia from PRX (Radiotopia from PRX)

  • “Southlake”

NBC News dives into battles over racism and the teaching of American history through a racial lens in one of the best school districts in Texas.

NBC News Audio (NBC News)

  • “This Land – Season 2”

The Crooked Media series, hosted by Native journalist Rebecca Nagle, looks into how the far right is using Native children, via a critical adoption dispute in Texas, to destroy American Indian tribes from within. The deep investigation is a testament to the power of the press and the Freedom of Information Act to reveal unsettling truths.

Crooked Media, Critical Frequency (Crooked Media)

  • “Throughline”

This NPR series plumbs the history behind current headlines to provide necessary historical context, from American Socialism and Ayn Rand to Y2K and the Arab Spring.

Throughline (podcast platforms)

About Peabody Awards

Respected for its integrity and revered for its standards of excellence, the Peabody is an honor like no other for television, podcast/radio, and digital media. Chosen each year by a diverse Board of Jurors through unanimous vote, Peabody Awards are given in the categories of entertainment, documentary, news, podcast/radio, arts, children’s and youth, and public service. The annual Peabody winners are a collection of 30 stories that powerfully reflect the pressing social issues and the vibrant emerging voices of our day. From major productions to local journalism, the Peabody Awards shine a light on the Stories That Matter and are a testament to the power of art and reportage in the push for truth, social justice, and equity. The Peabody Awards were founded in 1940 at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia and are still based in Athens today.

The Peabody Awards announce winners for Digital and Interactive Storytelling

The Peabody Awards Interactive Board of Jurors unveiled 12 winning digital and interactive projects alongside four special awardees that have achieved outstanding feats in storytelling across interactive, immersive and new media categories. The distinguished “Legacy class” of winners whose mediums altogether span virtual and augmented reality, gaming, interactive journalism, social video, interactive documentary, transmedia storytelling, and more, demonstrate the depth of these digital formats and emphasize the foundational standards for future award recipients.

“To recognize the present and future of storytelling in digital spaces, Peabody has taken the unusual step of looking backwards, recognizing landmark pioneering projects that have shaped and defined powerful stories in interactive and immersive media forms,” said Dr. Jeffrey Jones, executive director of Peabody. “We are honored to highlight these legacy projects and their creators, all of which signal the type of meaningful stories we will be recognizing each year going forward.”

The Peabody Awards were founded at the University of Georgia Grady College of Journalism 1940. This is the inaugural year for the Digital and Interactive Storytelling award category.


View more details about these honorees on the Peabody Interactive and Digital Storytelling website

Unanimously selected by the novel board of jurors, the legacy winners celebrate innovators who have long paved the way in diversifying storytelling experiences and communities, including four special awards. Phil Yu was named winner of the Trailblazer Award for his “Angry Asian Man” blog, a groundbreaking work at the forefront of amplifying Asian American voices in media and combating cultural stereotypes. Known as the “Godmother of Virtual Reality,” Nonny de la Peña received the Field Builder Award for her contributions to advancements in VR and immersive journalism, inspiring new modes of interactive storytelling that are now widely adopted. Peña and Yu’s awards were presented by Alejandro González Iñárritu and Daniel Dae Kim respectively.

The computer program ELIZA, developed in 1964-66, was honored with the Foundational Award for elevating software as a tool not just for business or science, but also for emotional interactions, empathy, and connection. Forensic Architecture received an Institutional Award for its evidentiary techniques known as “counter-forensics” to advance justice and to expose state, military, police, and corporate crimes of magnitude.

“By honoring these legacy projects and creative innovators, we celebrate dynamic stories that push the limit of what we know storytelling to be across all mediums,” said Diana Williams, chairwoman of the new Peabody Interactive Board. “And we also continue to uphold the Peabody’s mission of supporting visionaries who tell stories that illuminate the world around us and can perhaps evoke societal change.”

All winning projects are now featured on the Peabody Awards’ interactive website, for audiences to explore firsthand and to learn about their historical impact. Designed to honor and respect Peabody recipients within their medium, and created with accessibility in mind, audiences can view, share and engage with these legacy projects and the site’s exclusive content.

The formalization of the new awards category follows a tradition of past Peabody honorees recognized for their digital innovation and storytelling, including “Snow Fall: The Avalanche at Tunnel Creek (2012), “A Short History of the Highrise” (2013), and “That Dragon Cancer” (2016). Legacy winners were identified and handpicked by the Board as projects released prior to 2019. Any projects headed or led by jurors were removed from consideration. The bodies of work and profiles of the Peabody Interactive Board of Jurors is available on the Peabody website.

The first entry submission window for recent projects is slated to open late June 2022. Entry guidelines and eligibility rules will be available on the Peabody website beginning in May.

The full list of legacy winners is below (listed by the four special awards, followed by 12 projects in alphabetical order):

Peabody Award Legacy Winners for Digital & Interactive:
Phil Yu — Trailblazer Award

Like many people of color coming up in the 1980s and ‘90s, Phil Yu had grown accustomed to not seeing himself in mass media. But unlike many, Yu also got angry, and then he found a way to channel it. Angry Asian Man is a blog whose name is an ironic play on the model minority trope and asks: Why aren’t Asians allowed or expected to be angry? With the message as important as the delivery and consumption medium, Phil continues to shine a light on Asian American issues beyond his blog and into podcasts and publishing. Mainstream media is listening now.


View more details about these honorees on the Peabody Interactive and Digital Storytelling website

Nonny de la Peña — Field Builder Award

Nonny de la Peña has been at the forefront of emerging media throughout her career, earning the title of “Godmother of VR.” She was an important contributor during a historic period of discovery in beyond-broadcast digital media. Her example catalyzed a generation of storytellers and innovators to invest their genius towards meaning-making in emerging media forms. Significant areas of her innovation include room-scale 5DoF immersion; data visualization; flat game-engine storytelling; techniques to bring flat media documentation into immersive space, stimulating technologists to make VR headsets mobile, higher quality, and less expensive; and a platform that democratizes the immersive power of volumetric VR.

ELIZA (1964) — Foundational Award

Primary Credits: Joseph Weizenbaum, MIT Artificial Intelligence Laboratory

In 1966, Joseph Weizenbaum saw the potential in the computers of his day to create a program for the purpose not of processing information or doing scientific calculations, but for the sole intention of making a relationship. This program was ELIZA. ELIZA took the form of what we now call a chatbot. She opened the door to software as a tool not just for business or science, but also for emotional interactions, empathy, and connection.

Forensic Architecture (2010) — Institutional Award

Primary Credits: Eyal Weizman

In the 21st century, states’ and corporations’ arsenals include drones, chemical gasses, computational surveillance, sensors, and disinformation, which are launched at targets remotely through complex computer interfaces and dizzying transnational networks. In these next-level true crimes, there is no obvious smoking gun. For the last decade, Forensic Architecture has directed a spectacular coordinated response, led by architect Eyal Weizman. The group has written a new language of evidentiary techniques called “counter-forensics” to advance justice and expose state, military, police, and corporate crimes of magnitude on behalf of advocates and affected communities. Forensic Architecture has co-created an entire new academic field and emergent media practice, using digital 3D modeling for human rights investigation and documentary, to speak truth to computational power on a planetary scale.

Always in Season Island (2010)

Fields & Forms: Interactive Documentary, Game+Play, XR
Primary Credits: Jacqueline Olive
Additional Production Credits & Partners: Tell It Media, Bay Area Video Coalition

The creators of the virtual project Always in Season Island sought to confront the ongoing legacy of American racial terror following their 2019 documentary film (Always in Season) on the history of the lynching of African Americans. They recreated, in virtual life, the setting of the 1930 lynching in Marion, Indiana, when 10,000 white men, women, and children came to watch the torture and murder of two African American men. Avoiding gratuitous violence, “Always in Season Island” offered visitors tasks to complete and prompts to consider that either encouraged or stopped the lynching from occurring, ultimately pushing the conventions of the documentary form and challenging audiences to intimately examine their own capacities for both dehumanization and change.

The Beast, A.I. Transmedia Experience (2001)

Fields & Forms: Transmedia Storytelling
Primary Credits: Jordan Weisman, Sean Stewart, Pete Fenlon, and Elan Lee

Originally developed by a small team at Microsoft Games as a marketing campaign to support the 2001 film A.I.: Artificial Intelligence, “The Beast” played out over a massive network of fictional websites and other forms of media that combined to tell a sprawling tale set in the world of A.I.: Artificial Intelligence. Following clues hidden in the movie’s trailer and poster, those who found their way into the network were immersed in the storyworld and challenged with puzzles to unlock the next pieces of narrative. This mass-distributed form of storytelling, later dubbed an “Alternate Reality Game,” provided a template for a new way to tell stories over the internet and connected media.

Fatal Force: The Washington Post Police Shootings Database (2015)

Fields & Forms: Interactive Journalism
Primary Credits: Steven Rich, Julie Tate, David Fallis
Additional Production Credits & Partners: The Washington Post

Amid outrage over the 2014 police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, reporter Wesley Lowery suggested that The Post count every fatal police shooting in America. We now know that American police officers shoot and kill about 1,000 people a year, and The Post has consistently made the data accessible through graphics that show with stunning clarity how victims are disproportionately Black—more than a third of unarmed people—and overwhelmingly young and male. The most salient and impactful works of data journalism fill a void and answer crucial questions that the government or private sector choose not to. With the Fatal Force database, The Post’s work over seven years is an unwavering public service in the fight for criminal justice.

Feminist Frequency (2013)

Fields & Forms: Social Video
Primary Credits:  Anita Sarkeesian

Following the 2009 launch of her feminist media criticism website by the same name, Anita Sarkeesian advanced our conservations about popular culture, and specifically the representation of gender in media and “geek” and gamer culture, through her Feminist Frequency YouTube channel. Her lightning rod series “Tropes vs. Women in Video Games,” exposed the persistent denigration of women in one of the most popular media forms in the world and angered parts of the largely male gamer demographic, prompting the #GamerGate scandal when she endured vicious online harassment and death threats. Through it all, she continued to tell stories in service of manifesting a better world for women, queers, and other marginalized people.

How Y’all, Youse, and You Guys Talk: NY Times Dialect Quiz (2013)

Fields & Forms: Interactive Journalism
Primary Credits: Josh Katz, Wilson Andrews
Additional Production Credits & Partners: The New York Times

The New York Times’ work “How Y’all, Youse and You Guys Talk”—or, because of its sheer ubiquity, simply the “dialect quiz”—became a cultural touchstone immediately after its launch in 2013. After answering a series of questions about the words you use, the interactive graphic returns a map that, more often than not, pinpoints where you live or grew up. What started as a personal side project of graphics editor Josh Katz was used by tens of millions of visitors over the span of a few weeks and quickly became at the time the most-viewed piece of content in New York Times history for its ability to tell individuals a personal story about themselves while also drawing a limitless set of maps of cultural geography that still delights new readers today.

Journey (2012)

Fields & Forms: Interactive Narrative
Primary Credits: Jenova Chen
Additional Production Credits & Partners: SONY Computer Entertainment, Santa Monica Studio Developer: THATGAMECOMPANY INC

Journey is quiet, abstract, and spiritual, yet riveting. As a player you are a robed figure, seemingly lost, while meeting anonymous strangers, other players searching for what they do not know. Journey shook the gaming world when it was released a decade ago, crystallizing the spirit of a burgeoning generation of indie game developers, whose tender, artisanal works recalled the wonder of the earliest days of gaming. In Journey we are encouraged to collaborate with anonymous strangers as opposed to shouting at them for competition or clout. We are asked to slow down, stop talking, and pay attention to history and the ecosystem around us.

Never Alone (Kisima Inŋitchuŋa) (2014)

Fields & Forms: Interactive Narrative
Primary Credits: Sean Vesce, Alan Gershenfeld, Gloria O’Neill
Additional Production Credits & Partners: Cook Inlet Tribal Council, Inc. E-Line Media

“Kunuuksaayuka,” a traditional Alaskan Iñupiat tale, follows a young girl, Nuna, who fights against an eternal winter storm threatening her community’s survival. For the 2014 atmospheric puzzle-platformer Kisima Inŋitchuŋa, this epic journey has been adapted by writer, storyteller, and poet Ishmael Hope (Iñupiaq and Tlingit) into an artful and accessible educational game. Throughout the game, players encounter powerful video vignettes of interviews with 40 Iñupiat Elders who share legends, cultural practices, and traditional world-views. Importantly, the project originated with Upper One Games, a for-profit subsidiary of Cook Inlet Tribal Council established in 2012 as the first Indigenous-owned commercial game company in the United States.

Notes on Blindness: Into Darkness (2016)

Fields & Forms: XR
Primary Credits:  Arnaud Colinart, Amaury Laburth, Pete Middleton, James Spinney
Additional Production Credits & Partners: Archer’s Mark, Ex Nihiloin collaboration with Audiogaming, Novelab ARTE France With the Support of CNC

Notes on Blindness: Into Darkness is a beautifully crafted landmark 360 film project that premiered in 2016 in collaboration with an acclaimed flat feature film documentary. While the feature film (Notes on Blindness) told the story of an articulate professor documenting his transition from being a sighted to an unsighted person, the immersive piece gave audiences an experience of echolocation. In effect, the tables were turned, where sighted people shifted from sympathy for someone who “lost” a sense, to a realization that they have been so dominated by eye data inputs to their brain they have become “sound blind. The experience answered the “why immersion?” question with innovative design technique, a compelling experience, an emotional journey, and transcendent aesthetics—all elements of an excellent story.

Papers, Please (2013)

Fields & Forms: Game + Play
Primary Credits: Lucas Pope
Additional Production Credits & Partners: Developer and Publisher: 3909 LLC

First released in 2013, Papers, Please puts players in a position of authority in a dystopian police state. In this strategy simulation video game, the player is in the shoes of an immigration officer stationed in a country bordered by hostile neighbors. With little time to review and process documents, the player must make fast-paced decisions to determine who can cross the border. And with each wrong decision, the consequences can be dire, resulting in life or death stakes for your family who are dependent on your earnings. Papers, Please breaks away from the traditional tropes of kill or be killed but instead focuses on the ever-present complex, intricate, and personal choices resulting from geopolitical forces.

Quipu (2015)

Fields & Forms: Interactive Documentary, Audio
Primary Credits: Maria Ignacia Court, Rosemarie Lerner
Additional Production Credits & Partners: Chaka Studios

In the 2015 web-based online documentary Quipu Project audiences click on colored-dot icons, each representing testimonies of more than 100 women from remote mountainous locations across Peru, who share their anonymous stories in voice messages after dialing a free phone number. In recording after recording, they recount being among the nearly 300,000 women (and thousands of men) brutally subjected to sterilization under the government of former president Alberto Fujimori in the 1990s. Quipu Project elegantly fused low-tech phone technology for recording with a high-tech digital interface for the user experience, brilliantly weaving together ancient and new technologies to create a powerful and poetic online collection of co-created, participatory oral histories in a movement for justice and survivor support.

Star Wars Uncut (2010)

Fields & Forms: Co-Creation
Primary Credits: Casey Pugh
Additional Production Credits & Partners: Jamie Wilkinson, Chad Pugh, Annelise Pruitt, Bryan Pugh, Aaron Valdez, KK Apple, Todd Roman, Ivan Askwith

Star Wars Uncut—a 2010 online film produced, edited, and directed by Casey Pugh—is a crowdsourced shot-for-shot re-creation of Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, consisting of 473 segments, 15 seconds each, created and submitted by fans from all over the globe. In 2009, Pugh created a website where fans could sign up to re-create scenes from the original Star Wars film. When there were multiple contenders, there was a vote to determine whose work made it into the final film, which would then be altered in real time. Star Wars Uncut is a great example of fanfiction involving a beloved IP, a best-in-class show of how crowdsourced content can not only entertain, but also make a familiar story delightful in a new way.

 World Without Oil (2007)

Fields & Forms: Co-Creation, Transmedia Storytelling
Primary Credits: Ken Eklund
Additional Production Credits & Partners: Electric Shadows, Independent Lens, ITVS Interactive, Writerguy official credits: http://writerguy.com/wwo/metacontact.htm 

Unfolding online in 2007, World Without Oil simulated a global oil shortage. Over the 32 days the game ran, each day played out one week of events, charting worldwide ramifications of a global oil shock. The game invited players from around the world to tell their own stories of how the oil shortage was affecting their lives, through blog posts, voice recordings, pictures, video, and other user-generated content. Collaborating on potential solutions to a global crisis, the players together helped create a fictional documentary, raising important questions of sustainability and resiliency.

Peabody Awards to honor inaugural digital and interactive storytelling recipients

The Peabody Awards, the oldest and most prestigious awards honoring stories that matter in broadcasting and streaming media, announced that it will recognize winning projects—all to be hand-picked by an expanded, accomplished cohort of jurors—from its newest category, Digital and Interactive Storytelling, on March 24, 2022 at 10 a.m. PST/ 1 p.m. EST,  via peabodyawards.com.

In 2021, the Peabody Awards introduced the expansion of its award categories to recognize storytelling achievements across interactive and immersive categories.

“Creators have been telling amazingly powerful stories in these formats for a long time now. Peabody is excited to be much more thoughtful and intentional in recognizing them as stories that matter, standing squarely beside the traditional broadcast categories we have long awarded,” said Jeffrey Jones, executive director of Peabody.

The Peabody Awards were founded in 1940 at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia and are still based in Athens today.

The board has recently added four new jurors: Gabriel J.X Dance, Yasmin Elayat, Navid Khonsari and Opeyemi Olukemi. In reviewing possible award recipients, this newly created Interactive Board will screen projects across Gaming, Interactive Journalism, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Social Video, Interactive Documentary, Transmedia Storytelling, and more. The inaugural awards in Interactive will be given to legacy media projects that have proven to be enormously influential in setting the standard for the best storytelling in journalism, documentary, and entertainment using immersive and interactive formats.

“The works in this new category are fundamentally changing how we engage with storytelling, and therein changing us. It’s imperative that we recognize the projects that have catalyzed and revolutionized how media is seen, understood, engaged with and disseminated.  We hope that honoring these legacy winners will continue to push forward our mission of supporting ambitious, groundbreaking creators who strive to make projects with stories that are not only entertaining but can also perhaps prompt visible, societal shifts,” said Diana Williams, chairwoman of the new Peabody Interactive Board.

The Peabody Awards and Black Heart, a creative agency in the space of Extended Reality (XR), are collaborating to create an interactive website to feature Peabody’s new category. Users will be able to watch, explore, and experience the winners via a desktop-accessible and mobile-compatible website. Created with accessibility in mind, users can dive deep into projects with exclusive content and discover secret treasures and other hidden gems.

“Our aim is to not only keep pace, but to honor the contributions of these artists with our own efforts,” Jones said. “The new website and awards platform is representative of that.”

The Newest Members of the Peabody Interactive Board are:

Gabriel J.X. Dance is the deputy investigations editor at The New York Times focusing on the nexus of privacy and safety online. Previously, Dance was part of a team of journalists that reported on the data-sharing practices at Facebook and the bot economy on Twitter, was involved in the reporting on Donald Trump’s taxes, and was a founding managing editor at The Marshall Project. Dance has undergraduate degrees in computer science and technical journalism from Colorado State University, a master’s degree in journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and was among a group of journalists at The Guardian who won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for coverage of widespread secret surveillance by the N.S.A..

Yasmin Elayat is an Emmy-award winning immersive director, United States Artists 2020 Fellow, and Co-Founder at Scatter, an immersive company pioneering Volumetric Filmmaking. Yasmin directed Scatter’s Zero Days VR (Sundance 2017) a documentary about cyber warfare and the Stuxnet virus, which won the Emmy for Original Approaches: Documentary. Yasmin is the co-creator of 18DaysInEgypt, which was lauded as one the Moments of Innovation in Participatory Documentary. Yasmin is a co-director of The Changing Same trilogy. Episode 1 premiered at Sundance 2021 and won “Best Immersive Narrative” at Tribeca Festival. Yasmin’s work has won multiple awards and exhibited at various festivals including Sundance, Tribeca, SIGGRAPH, Festival de Cannes, and the World Economic Forum.

Navid Khonsari, is the co-founder of  iNK Stories, an award-winning studio creating impact-forward original work across games, mixed reality (VR/AR) and immersive experiences, and has forged a new hybrid of documentary-games: ”Verite Games.” Drawing upon personal history Khonsari created 1979 Revolution: Black Friday, which received the industry’s top honors: a BAFTA, Facebook Game of the Year, Tribeca FF Storyscape, among others, and was recognized by UNESCO as a digital solution for peaceful conflict resolution. Khonsari is credited with having ushered in the current wave of contemporary AAA video games, such as Grand Theft Auto, Max Payne, Red Dead Revolver, and The Warriors, up to the recent Resident Evil: Biohazard. He is an adjunct professor at Johns Hopkins, and guest lectures at Yale, Princeton, Columbia, Duke, Northwestern in Qatar, White House, UN, Sundance and more.

Opeyemi Olukemi is the executive director of the Center of Documentary Studies (CDS), anchored in Durham, North Carolina. Throughout her career as an interactive producer, funder and public programmer, Olukemi has created spaces and pipelines for interdisciplinary artists, communities, and creative teams to experiment and create meaningful innovative content. Olukemi has previously led teams at POV Spark, served as the Senior Director of Interactive Programs for Tribeca Film Institute and has produced projects for ScrollMotion. Olukemi has served on numerous international festival juries and has mentored through IDFA’s Doc Academy, New Museum’s NEW INC, Oculus’ VR for Good, Sundance’s New Frontier Lab and the Venice Biennale College Cinema, and was also an assistant professor of Integrated Media at Brooklyn College’s Barry R. Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema. Olukemi is a proud Rockwood (Ford Foundation) JustFilms Fellow.

The current board of jurors also includes:

  • Diana Williams (Chair), CEO and co-founder, Kinetic Energy Entertainment
  • Lars Bastholm, chief creative officer, Story House Egmont
  • Jay Bushman, writer and producer
  • Aymar Jean Christian, , associate professor of communication studies, Northwestern University
  • Katerina Cizek, artistic director and co-founder, Co-Creation Studio at MIT Open Documentary Lab
  • Amy Hennig, president, New Media Division at Skydance Media
  • Al Shaw, editor, News Applications at ProPublica
  • Kamal Sinclair, executive director of the Guild of Future Architects
  • Sara Thacher, creative director and senior R&D imagineer at Walt Disney Imagineering
  • Lance Weiler, co-founder and director, Columbia University School of the Arts Digital Storytelling Lab

For more information visit peabodyawards.com and follow #PeabodyAwards #StoriesThatMatter across Peabody Awards social media channels:

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

Peabody Awards names new Board of Jurors; Monica Kaufman Pearson to lead Board

Longtime WSB-TV evening news anchor Monica Kaufman Pearson (MA ’14)  has been named as the next chair of the Peabody Awards Board of Jurors, making her the first African American woman to lead the prestigious program’s judging body.

Pearson has been a trailblazer for her entire career in the Atlanta area. She was the first woman and first minority to anchor the daily evening news in the city at its leading station, WSB-TV, where she worked for 37 years. She won more than 33 Southern Regional and local Emmy awards for her reporting and anchoring, as well as for her celebrity interview show, Closeups. When she retired, she was recognized on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives by a bipartisan Georgia delegation for her decades of service.

Monica Pearson headshot
Grady College alumna Monica Pearson has been named chair of the Peabody Awards Board of Jurors.

Since her 2012 retirement, she has earned a master’s degree from Grady College, hosted “This Week in Black History” for KISS 104.1 FM, and co-hosted the Emmy-nominated Georgia Public Broadcasting show “A Seat at the Table.”

She has served on Peabody’s Board of Jurors since 2015. “I have valued the opportunity to recognize the best in broadcasting in my work with Peabody for the last 6 years,” Pearson said. “It is an honor to step into a leadership role with this esteemed group of industry colleagues that celebrates the ways skillful storytelling can unite us and illuminate truth in these critical times.”

“Monica is not just an Atlanta treasure—she’s a natural leader whose strength, warmth, compassion and humor always makes the board’s deliberation smarter and, frankly, a lot more fun,” said Jeffrey Jones, executive director of the program. “We are honored that she has agreed to serve us as board chair this coming year.”

Peabody has also appointed Vanessa K. De Luca, Hannah Giorgis, Nicholas Quah, Kent Rees, Mark Ruffin to its board of jurors, which each year bestows the Peabody Awards for excellence in television, radio/podcasting, and digital media. The program is based at Grady College.

“We are honored to have such accomplished industry leaders contributing to our mission to recognize quality media programming of the highest standard. These experts are the perfect choice to help us spotlight works that best reflect the issues and voices of our time,” said Jones.

Vanessa K. De Luca currently serves as Editor-In-Chief of The Root, overseeing the publication’s editorial vision and content creation across all platforms. Most recently she served as the Editor-in-Chief of ZORA magazine and helmed ESSENCE magazine. An award-winning journalist and co-author of the bestselling beauty and empowerment book Tyra Banks Beauty Inside & Out, she has been a featured guest on several national television networks, including NBC’s TODAY Show, CBS This Morning, MSNBC’s Morning Joe, CNN and more.

Hannah Giorgis is a staff writer at The Atlantic. In a recent cover story, “The Unwritten Rules of Black TV,” Hannah presented a definitive look at Black representation behind the camera, and the progress and roadblocks for creators whose voices have too long been ignored. Her essays, criticism, and reporting have appeared in publications including the New York Times magazine, New Yorker, The Guardian, Bon Appétit, and Pitchfork. Most recently she co-wrote Ida B. The Queen: The Extraordinary Life and Legacy of Ida B. Wells with Wells’ great-granddaughter, Michelle Duster.

Nicholas Quah is the podcast critic at New York Magazine’s Vulture and a contributing critic at NPR’s Fresh Air. One of the earliest journalists dedicated to covering the podcast industry, he is also the founder of Hot Pod, widely considered to be a leading trade newsletter covering the podcast business, which was sold to Vox Media. Originally from Malaysia, he has a B.A. from Wesleyan University, an M.A. from the University of Chicago, and was a Visiting Nieman Fellow at Harvard University in 2017.

Kent Rees is an industry-leading digital and content marketing strategist. He is currently the general manager and chief marketing officer for FAST Studios, a company that owns and operates ad-support streaming TV networks. Prior to that, he was the Chief Marketing Officer for Pop TV and the EVP and General Manager of Pivot. Mr. Rees went to NYU Film School and has been an adjunct professor at Emerson College since 2018.

Mark Ruffin is the program director of the Real Jazz channel on SiriusXM. Before that he spent over 25 years as a fixture in jazz broadcasting and journalism in Chicago, winning two Emmy Awards for his efforts to bring stories about jazz to television on WTTW-TV. Mr. Ruffin worked as the jazz editor for Chicago Magazine and has written hundreds of articles on jazz, broadcasting and African-American culture. In 2020, Mr. Ruffin released his first book, Bebop Fairy Tales: A Historical Fiction Trilogy on Jazz, Intolerance and Baseball.

The Peabody Board of Jurors is made up of media industry professionals, media scholars, critics and journalists, appointed by the program’s executive director to a renewable three-year term of service.

Each year, this mix of top-level thought leaders names 60 nominees from which they then select The Peabody 30—the best programs that achieve the highest standards in media and storytelling across genre and platforms.

Along with Pearson and the new jurors, the current board of jurors also includes:

  • Lorraine Ali, TV critic, The Los Angeles Times
  • Manuel Betancourt, film and television critic
  • Herman Gray, emeritus professor of sociology, University of California at Santa Cruz
  • Karen Hall, veteran TV writer, producer, creative consultant
  • Dana Heller, dean, College of Arts and Sciences, Eastern Michigan University
  • Kathy Im, director of journalism and media, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
  • Michael Isip, president and CEO of KQED
  • Wonya Lucas, president and CEO, Crown Media Family Networks
  • Mike Monello, co-founder and creative director, Campfire
  • Aswin Punathambekar, associate professor of media studies, University of Virginia
  • John Seigenthaler, partner, DVL Seigenthaler; former news anchor, NBC News
  • Simon Kilmurry, former executive director, International Documentary Association

Respected for its integrity and revered for its standards of excellence, the Peabody is an honor like no other for television, podcast/radio, and digital media. Chosen each year by a diverse Board of Jurors through unanimous vote, Peabody Awards are given in the categories of entertainment, documentary, news, podcast/radio, arts, children’s and youth, public service, and multimedia programming. The annual Peabody winners are a collection of 30 stories that powerfully reflect the pressing social issues and the vibrant emerging voices of our day. From major productions to local journalism, the Peabody Awards shine a light on the Stories That Matter and are a testament to the power of art and reportage in the push for truth, social justice, and equity. The Peabody Awards were founded in 1940 at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia and are still based in Athens today.

Peabody Awards Names 30 Winners Representing the Very Best in Storytelling

Today the Peabody Awards Board of Jurors unveiled all 30 programs representing the most compelling and empowering stories released in broadcasting and streaming media during 2020. Of the 30 winners, PBS led with five, followed by Netflix with four, HBO with three, and Amazon, Apple TV+, and Showtime each with two. Additional winning platforms include ABC, The Atlantic, CBS, Disney Channel, ITV, KING 5, KNXV-TV, MTV, Nashville Public Radio, National Geographic, Shudder, and The Washington Post.

“Whether documenting the horrors and struggles of COVID-19, amplifying critical discussions around police brutality, or simply entertaining us with heartfelt stories about our shared humanity, the Peabody 30 winners represent the very best in compelling storytelling.” said Jeffrey P. Jones, executive director of Peabody. “Spanning mediums and genres, they told urgent and powerful stories despite the many challenges posed by the pandemic and an often relentless hostility towards the press. It is an honor to celebrate their fantastic work.”

The Peabody 30 are the best of over 1,300 entries submitted from television, podcasts/radio and the web in entertainment, news, documentary, arts, children’s/youth, public service and multimedia programming. Chosen unanimously by a board of 19 jurors, the winning programs this year covered numerous pressing issues, including COVID-19, voting rights, police violence, immigrant rights, and economic justice. News programs earned 8 wins this year. PBS NewsHour won for its coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic, while Hao Wu’s brilliant documentary 76 Days won for capturing the early struggles of the battle against COVID-19 in Wuhan, China. Several news winners, including “Post Reports: The Life of George Floyd” and KING 5’s “Facing Race” covered the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd and the surrounding conversations regarding racial inequality. And several winners, including Netflix’s Immigration Nation and PBS NewsHour’s “Desperate Journey,” highlighted the plight of immigrants and migrants. Entertainment winners like HBO’s “I May Destroy You” and Apple TV+’s “Ted Lasso” were artistically evocative stories of complex individuality and human connection.

The 30 winners of the 81st annual Peabody Awards were named during a multi-day virtual celebration from June 21st through June 24th. Video announcements and acceptances are available at: https://peabodyawards.com/2021-acceptance-videos/. The full list of winners is below. Celebrity presenters announced each winner via a short video which included remarks from the winners. The winners were announced on Twitter (@PeabodyAwards); Instagram (@PeabodyAwards); Facebook (Peabody Awards) and online at https://peabodyawards.com/.

The organization previously announced Ava DuVernay’s ARRAY as an Institutional Award winner. This distinctive honor recognizes institutions and organizations, as well as series and programs, for their enduring body of work and their iconic impact on both the media landscape and the public imagination. Sam Pollard was also named winner of the Peabody Career Achievement Award. Judy Woodruff, anchor and managing editor of the PBS NewsHour, won the Peabody Award for Journalistic Integrity. Peabody also made a special commendation in recognition of Journalism Crews for their work in 2020 amidst unprecedented challenges. In addition to working through the most dangerous public health crisis in a century, they braved hostile rhetorical and physical attacks during a presidential election where the press was deemed “enemies of the people.”

The Peabody Awards are based at the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia.

To view presenter and acceptance speeches after they are announced, please visit: https://peabodyawards.com/2021-acceptance-videos/

Entertainment

“Small Axe” (Amazon Studios) Presented by Cynthia Erivo to Steve McQueen

Documentary

“The Cave” (NatGeo) Presented by Soledad O’Brien

“Welcome to Chechnya” (HBO) Presented by Ronan Farrow

News

“ABC News 20/20: Breonna Taylor” (ABC) Presented by Taraji P. Henson to Michael Strahan and Deborah Roberts

“PBS NewsHour: Desperate Journey” (PBS) Presented by America Ferrera

Podcast/Radio

“The Promise: Season 2” (Nashville Public Radio) presented by John Seigenthaler

Public Service

“Cops and Robbers” (Netflix) Presented by Karl-Anthony Towns

Children’s & Youth

“Stillwater” (Apple TV+) Presented by Goldie Hawn

INSTITUTIONAL WINNER

ARRAY

Founded in 2011 by filmmaker Ava DuVernay, ARRAY is as much a center for disruptive institutional and narrative change as it is a production house. Indeed, its creative campus in Filipinotown, Los Angeles is itself a rejection of antiquated Hollywood thinking, not just in foregrounding absent voices and missing representations in front of and behind the camera by people of color and women, but in reimagining how projects are greenlit, created, produced, and distributed, and by whom. In ten short years, ARRAY has built the institutional infrastructure to produce award-winning content. Yet ARRAY is also deeply invested in the social impact of its work, creating educational and learning materials for much of its content. It’s easy to see that DuVernay and her women-led team at ARRAY have not waited for permission to build, create, grow, and envision a different and more equitable future for neglected filmmakers, artists, and social activists. Through brilliant visioning and old-fashioned sweat equity, ARRAY has crafted a new way forward in an industry heavily resistant to change.

CAREER ACHIEVEMENT AWARD

Sam Pollard

A renowned editor, director and producer across film and television, Sam Pollard’s remarkable work critically conveys the historical reach of anti-Blackness, racial injustice and the enduring power of black freedom struggles. With tremendous insight and sensitivity, he mines the rich archives of African American life and culture portraying indomitable stories of struggle and determination. In the process he elevates the ordinary, stresses the pleasures, care, and compassion of Black people and ultimately serves as our guide to the power of Black freedom dreams. A Professor at the NYU Tisch School of the Arts, Pollard’s mentorship and teaching of a new generation of documentary storytellers continues his impact in the field and in the world. With his indomitable energy and insatiable curiosity, his generosity as a colleague, mentor, collaborator, his acute sensitivity to the complex modalities of black life and his undying commitment to social justice, Pollard is a virtuoso who continues to identify, document, curate and shape some of the most important and enduring stories that matter.

PEABODY AWARD FOR JOURNALISTIC INTEGRITY

Judy Woodruff

With an award-winning career that spans more than five decades, Judy Woodruff, the anchor and managing editor of the PBS NewsHour, represents the best of television news and is one of the most trusted broadcast journalists in America. In a world where “opinion” programs and personalities often dominate the media landscape, Woodruff has earned her reputation for delivering unbiased, fact-based news stories without the hype. From the beginning of her career, Woodruff rose quickly through the ranks of TV newsrooms, from local Atlanta television news to NBC to CNN to PBS. In 2016, Woodruff became the sole anchor and managing editor of the PBS NewsHour. Throughout her career, Woodruff has been an outspoken advocate of the First Amendment, upholding the importance of a free and unfettered press as critical to the survival of our democracy. Never has that been more critical—never has journalistic integrity been more critical—than where we find ourselves today. For her extraordinary contributions to American television, for her groundbreaking work, and for her commitment to telling us the truth, the Board of Jurors is proud to salute Judy Woodruff with the first-ever Peabody Award for Journalistic Integrity.

ENTERTAINMENT

“I May Destroy You”

One of the year’s most critically-acclaimed series is the provocative brainchild of British screenwriter, director, producer, and actor, Michaela Coel. The story centers on her character Arabella, who awakens from a night on the town with fragmented memories of having been sexually assaulted. With a compelling narrative that mirrors the structural rhythms of psychological trauma, the show defines the emergent subgenre of consent drama and takes center stage in a developing cultural conversation around complex issues of sexuality and consent, freedom and abuse, friendship and trust.

HBO in association with BBC, Various Artists Limited, and FALKNA (HBO)

“La Llorona”

Jayme Bustamante’s reworking of that well-known Latin American folk tale about a weeping woman relies on the lyrical potential of the ghost story genre. The power of this gripping film is its inventive approach to visualizing the pains of a nation’s collective memory. It is a quietly powerful indictment of justice delayed and a visceral embodiment of accountability politics that rightly centers Guatemala’s indigenous population.

La Casa de Producción (Shudder)

“Small Axe”

This anthology series by Steve McQueen focuses on Black West Indian immigrant stories in post-war Britain. It honors the sacrifices made, hardships endured, culture asserted, and battles fought—the small and large acts of courage and confidence—all for the dreams of possibility and becoming. Portrayed through the poetics and intimacies of everyday life, the richness of culture and music, and the collective power of social movement and political action, Small Axe is a stunning emotional testament, offered as both political prism and intellectual history.

BBC Studios Americas, Inc. and Amazon Studios (Amazon Studios)

“Ted Lasso”

What this presumably Ugly American, fish-out-of-water tale offers us is a charming dose of radical optimism, with an equally endearing Jason Sudeikis as Ted Lasso. It turns out that more than simply a sports coach, Ted is remarkably good at honest communication with others, affecting change by being a deeply good human, one with his own quiet anxieties and pain. The Apple TV+ series is the perfect counter to the enduring prevalence of toxic masculinity, both on-screen and off, in a moment when the nation truly needs inspiring models of kindness.

Apple / Doozer Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television and Universal Television (Apple TV+)

“The Good Lord Bird”

Part fiction, part history, and part dramatic satire, this Showtime limited series boldly yet humorously examines the enigmatic abolitionist John Brown. With Ethan Hawke’s rich and complex portrayal of a madman who would become a martyr, Brown’s competing legacies are given ample room to coexist. The miniseries can’t help but follow in his wake and give us an irreverent history lesson that feels fresh and pressing for our times.

Showtime Presents Blumhouse Television, Mark 924 Entertainment, Under the Influence Productions (Showtime)

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert”

With filming restrictions in place, Stephen Colbert decided to move production of his CBS Late Show to his home outside of Charleston, a remarkably successful transformation of the late-night television model by a host inviting us into his home, rather than his typical comforting presence in our living rooms and bedrooms. Amidst suffering in a global pandemic, a public fed up with police violence against African Americans, and a morally contemptuous president fighting for his political life, Colbert’s kindness, gentle spirit, and deeply felt ethical nature provided a nightly salve the nation desperately needed.

CBS Studios (CBS)

“Unorthodox”

A riveting thriller, the series takes a hard look at how a religious community enforces strict gender roles to maintain its identity no matter the human cost. With the raw and authentic Shira Haas as Esty, Unorthodox merges a stark portrayal of religious oppression with a coming-of-age story that resonates with gritty, desperate innocence.

Studio Airlift and RealFilm for Netflix (Netflix)

DOCUMENTARIES

“76 Days”      

This is a hopeful film that does more than just document the beginning of the global pandemic in the lockdown period of Wuhan, China—the city in which cases of the coronavirus were first reported. It is a film about resilience, compassion, empathy, improvisation, the power of human touch and caring hearts as much as it is about panic, suffering, and indiscriminate victims. Using a direct cinema technique across four hospitals, the film captures frontline workers and the sick and dying while eschewing the story of politics and government action and statistics.

76 Days LLC / MTV Documentary Films

“Asian Americans”

Renee Tajima-Peña’s five-part documentary series places Asian communities at the center of debates about belonging and citizenship in America. The series asks us to consider who gets to be at the center of these American stories, offering the requisite national, ethnic, religious, political, linguistic, and cultural diversity that make up Asian American communities across the country today. In turn, we move beyond a singular representative testimony and bear witness to varying, complex, and touching portraits of individuals, identities, enclaves, and movements, collectively born in the face of tragedy and in spite of the burdens of trauma.

CAAM, WETA, Flash Cuts, LLC., Tajima-Peña Productions, ITVS (PBS)

“Collective”

In the aftermath of a nightclub fire in Bucharest, the survivors suffering from non-life threatening burn injuries mysteriously begin dying. Journalists from the Gazeta Sporturilor newspaper probe into why, and their enterprising investigation, supported by key whistleblowers, is captured by director Alexander Nanau’s intimate and breathtaking cinema vérité film. What unfolds is a staggering exposure of official corruption that reaches from the highest levels of government and infects the entire health care system.

Alexander Nanau Production, Samsa Film HBO Europe (HBO Europe)

“Crip Camp”

Nicole Newnham and James LeBrecht’s film features a group of summer campers who first met at Camp Jened in upstate New York in the early 1970s and went on to become key players and activists in the Disability Rights Movement in the U.S. With an unapologetic spirit and a welcome cheekiness found in its archival footage, the documentary gives us a glimpse into the warmth of the teenagers’ discovery of independence, romance, and themselves, while also offering an inspiring history of a space where people found the strength and the sense of community to take on a fight to change the very world around us.

A Higher Ground and Rusted Spoke Production in association with Little Punk / JustFilms / Ford Foundation for Netflix (Netflix)

“Immigration Nation”

Christina Clusiau and Shaul Schwarz’s six-part documentary on the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency shows how bureaucrats and officers working across different, seemingly unconnected domains make up a complex and terrorizing system. With rare access to detention facilities, ICE agents on duty, immigrant families, and lawyers and activists, the filmmakers reveal how individual and collective justifications of “we are just doing our job” rationalize a punishing system.

A Reel Peak Films Production for Netflix (Netflix)

“The Cave”

Director Feras Fayyad’s astonishing documentary tells the story of a subterranean network of tunnels that function as a hospital in Syria, where the besieged residents of war-torn Al-Ghouta come for relatively safe medical care. Most are greeted by Dr. Amani Ballour, a female doctor in her late 20s, who serves as the hospital’s managing physician. The hospital endures everything from the constant fear of daily bombing raids to the heartbreak of children suffocating in war-crime chemical attacks. These haunting and harrowing images are necessary cries for help for these seemingly forgotten victims.

A Danish Documentary Production, in Co-Production with Ma.Ja.De Hecat Studio Paris Madam Films for National Geographic Documentary Films (National Geographic)

“Time”

This remarkable story of love and the impact of incarceration on a family is detailed through the multiple, often elusive registers of time—slow time, long time, happy time, missed time, hopeful time, and arrested time. In this brilliantly conceived, beautifully realized, and brutally honest chronicle, we travel with Fox Rich and her family toward her husband’s release and their collective freedom. Carefully building and then mining the archive of family memories, home movies, prison visits, high school and college graduations, filmmaker Garrett Bradley proffers viewers the power of dreams and the struggle to shape and sustain love and life across the divides of incarceration.

Concordia Studio, GB Feature, LLC and Amazon Studios (Amazon Studios)

“Welcome to Chechnya”

Filmed in secret with the use of hidden cameras and cell phones, David France’s documentary details the brutal ongoing purge of LGBTQ Chechens in the closed Russian republic by a government-directed system of abduction, torture, and execution. The film follows undercover activists who risk their own safety to deliver rescued victims to safe houses and provide visa assistance for their refuge. The film employs innovative techniques of artificial intelligence and facial replacement visual effects to protect the identities of the subjects while delivering a harrowing story of ruthless persecution, audacious courage, and human survival.

Public Square Films, Ninety Thousand Words, Maylo Films, BBC Storyville and HBO Documentary Films (HBO)

PODCAST/RADIO

“Floodlines”

This captivating podcast is a comprehensive story of Hurricane Katrina and its social, cultural, psychological, political, economic, and environmental aftermath and impact. From the national media’s ready-made criminalization of Black residents and their worthiness to be rescued, to the insensitive early response of national government officials, Floodlines also asks us to consider what happens to place, home, relationships, and community when politics, incompetence, and indifference are at the core of how we regard each other.

The Atlantic (theatlantic.com; podcast platforms)

“Post Reports: The Life of George Floyd”

George Floyd’s death ignited a global movement to end the plague of state violence against African Americans. Rather than focus on his death, The Washington Post sought to answer a simple but enlightening question: “What about his life?” Rather than a straightforward biography, their special podcast episode offers a more expansive view of Floyd’s life, keenly laying out how systemic racism operates across many institutions, creating sharply disparate outcomes in housing, education, the economy, law enforcement, and health care. The Post Reports team sketches a moving portrait of a man and of a nation, one that feels all the more archetypal for its familiar trappings.

The Washington Post (washingtonpost.com; podcast platforms)

“The Promise: Season 2”

Host Meribah Knight examines Warner Elementary, one of the most racially and economically lopsided schools in Nashville, especially when compared with the high-performing, almost all-white school just one mile away. Taking aim at nice, well-meaning white parents in an increasingly gentrified neighborhood, season 2 of The Promise chronicles the decades-long fight against desegregation as well as Warner’s uphill battle to turn itself around. The podcast carefully lays out how the current school system is inherently dependent on the resources white households provide, both creating and perpetuating systemic inequality in the process that most affects Black students.

Nashville Public Radio (Nashville Public Radio)

NEWS

“ABC News 20/20 in collaboration with The Courier Journal: Say Her Name: Breonna Taylor”

ABC News 20/20 and The Courier Journal’s two-hour documentary special presents a holistic picture of the events that led to the police killing of Breonna Taylor on March 13, 2020. Tracing the botched police investigations and operation that resulted in officers arriving at Taylor’s apartment building, this report is a lucid investigation that goes for the granular without losing sight of the systemic and structural fissures that led to her death. Exhaustive forensic reporting paints Taylor as more than the symbol she’s become, yet also reminds us why this case symbolizes how the demands for justice and police reform are so necessary.

ABC News 20/20 + Courier Journal (ABC)

“China Undercover”

This documentary uncovers the story of China’s arresting an estimated two million Uyghur Muslims and putting them in concentration camps—what experts says is the largest mass incarceration of an ethnic group since the Holocaust. But the report also makes the case that this is a massive experiment in developing the most complete surveillance state in history, as the government employs technologies such as advanced algorithmic facial recognition software and houses marked with digital barcodes to monitor and ultimately detain Muslims whose behavior is “predicted” as threatening.

FRONTLINE (PBS / GBH)

“Full Disclosure”

Digging into Arizona’s “Brady list,” a system designed to track police officers with histories of lying and committing crimes in hopes of keeping police accountable, this hour-long special from ABC15 Arizona offers a stark portrait not only of why the system is broken, but why it has never been fixed. The yearlong investigation, with exhaustive reporting and damning video footage, demonstrates how law enforcement agencies rarely adhere to their own legal standards in keeping and disseminating such misconduct reports.

KNXV-TV ABC15 (KNXV-TV)

“Muslim in Trump’s America (Exposure)”

In this rigorously reported film that chronicles the dangerous climate created around Muslims and other groups targeted during Trump’s presidency, director Deeyah Khan investigates the connection between rising hate crimes and state-sponsored racism with stories of those at the center of the storm: the downward spiral of a Kansas farmer serving 30 years for an anti-Muslim bomb plot; the conspiracy-filled world of right wing, armed militia who believe that Islam is infiltrating the United States; the painful reality of Muslims whose loved ones were hunted and killed by white supremacists; and the complex duties of embattled lawmakers such as Minnesota’s Congresswoman Ilhan Omar.

Fuuse Films (ITV)

“PBS NewsHour: Coverage of the COVID-19 Pandemic”

Relentless and comprehensive reporting from PBS NewsHour gave us the best news coverage of a once-in-a-century global pandemic. Their work on “Global Pandemic” covered the pandemic’s human toll on five continents, in countries already hit hard by war, famine, and death. In the United States, “Making Sense: The Victims of COVID” put a spotlight on the millions who lost their jobs, the devastating impact on restaurants, and the near shutdown of the travel industry, while shedding new light on how the pandemic revealed and exacerbated astonishing racial disparities in American health outcomes.

PBS NewsHour (PBS)

“PBS NewsHour: Desperate Journey”

The plight of migrants and refugees is often fraught with danger, but the Darien Gap, a treacherous and lawless 66-mile trail through the wilderness on the border of Columbia and Panama, might be the most dangerous path to freedom on the planet. PBS special correspondent Nadja Drost and videographer Bruno Federico put themselves at great risk to join this caravan. What could be more consequential in helping viewers to understand the desperation of these migrants than the image of them stepping over the skeletal remains of those who have gone before them and failed?

PBS NewsHour (PBS)

“VICE on Showtime: Losing Ground”

Correspondent Alzo Slade explores how a little-known type of ownership known as “heirs property” leaves African Americans especially vulnerable to losing their property to unscrupulous developers through arcane and ethically questionable legal mechanisms. The abstract maneuvers occur in piecemeal, hard-to-follow fashion, but the cumulative result is that entire families are displaced and inheritances lost. Losing Ground dramatizes how the law so often favors the ruthless and illuminates a dark side of American property rights.

VICE News (Showtime)

“Whose Vote Counts”

From the legal battles over primary election absentee ballots to how the pandemic would exacerbate unfounded concerns over “rampant voter fraud” in November, Whose Vote Counts presents a clear breakdown of the way racial inequities, COVID-19, and voter suppression became interlinked crises in 2020. In collaboration with Columbia Journalism Investigations, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, and USA Today, the team at FRONTLINE and writer Jelani Cobb offer a probing and thorough investigation into the simple question of the piece’s title.

FRONTLINE, Columbia Journalism Investigations, USA Today Network (PBS / GBH)

CHILDREN’S & YOUTH

“Stillwater”

Designed to get its young audience to embrace mindfulness, empathy, and kindness, and to rejoice in the chance to rejoice in the quiet wonders of the world around them, Stillwater is a calm and soothing balm in the typically frenetic world of children’s television. Its essence is best captured by the patience of voice actor James Sie, who makes the titular character as much a role model for kids as for those parents watching. Structured around a number of parables told by the affable panda bear to his three young neighbors, every episode feels like an engrossing painting come to life that demands you slow down and take care to relish its every brushstroke.

Apple / Scholastic Entertainment / Gaumont (Apple TV+)

“The Owl House”

Alice in Wonderland. Dorothy in Oz. Coraline in Other World. To that list we should now add: Luz in Boiling Isles. Luz crosses a mysterious threshold and finds herself in a magical, colorful land where she finds both the strength and the support group she needs to become who she’s meant to be. The Dana Terrace-created animated series builds a wildly inventive other world that makes room for everyone and gives queer kids a welcome template alongside which to explore their own budding creative energies.

Disney Television Animation (Disney Channel)

PUBLIC SERVICE

“Cops and Robbers”

Timothy Ware-Hill and Arnon Manor’s animated short film, derived from the Ware-Hill poem, evokes the  make-believe childhood game that rings quite differently for young Black kids, whose interactions with police officers do not make for such lighthearted play. Ruminating on his younger years, Ware-Hill paints a portrait of the innocence young Black boys like him are seldom afforded. But if the poem centers on his singular memories, the animated visuals that accompany this piece—produced by 30 individual artists, students and VFX companies from around the world—encompass many distinct animated styles, speaking to the shared, lived experience of many.

Chemical Soup, Lawrence Bender Productions, Netflix (Netflix)

“Facing Race”

This audacious series tackles the deep-rooted subject of racial inequality, racism, racial privilege, and the systematic ways in which race structures and impacts the public and personal life of Seattle residents. From criminal justice to health disparities, environmental racism to land policy ramifications for Native American communities, the reporting team covers the magnitude and depth of the story sensitively yet critically. In particular, the series is attentive as well to the powerful emotional and psychological impact of racism and racial trauma, particularly among parents, trans-racial adoptees, and multiracial youth.

KING 5 (KING-TV)

FULL WINNERS LIST (CONSOLIDATED)

Institutional Winner

ARRAY

Career Achievement Award

Sam Pollard

Peabody Award for Journalistic Integrity

Judy Woodruff

Entertainment

“I May Destroy You” (HBO)

“La Llorona” (Shudder)

“Small Axe” (Amazon Studios)

“Ted Lasso” (Apple TV+)

“The Good Lord Bird” (Showtime)

“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” (CBS)

“Unorthodox” (Netflix)

Documentary

“76 Days” (MTV Documentary Films)

“Asian Americans” (PBS)

“Collective” (HBO Europe)

“Crip Camp” (Netflix)

“Immigration Nation” (Netflix)

“The Cave” (National Geographic)

“Time” (Amazon Studios)

“Welcome to Chechnya” (HBO)

Podcast/Radio

“Floodlines” (The Atlantic)

“Post Reports: The Life of George Floyd” (The Washington Post)

“The Promise: Season 2” (Nashville Public Radio)

News

“ABC News 20/20 in collaboration with The Courier Journal: Say Her Name: Breonna Taylor” (ABC)

“China Undercover” (PBS / GBH)

“Full Disclosure” (KNXV-TV)

“Muslim in Trump’s America (Exposure)” (ITV)

“PBS NewsHour: Coverage of the COVID-19 Coverage Pandemic” (PBS)

“PBS NewsHour: Desperate Journey” (PBS)

“VICE on Showtime: Losing Ground” (Showtime)

“Whose Vote Counts” (PBS / GBH)

Children’s & Youth

“Stillwater” (Apple TV+)

“The Owl House” (Disney Channel)

Public Service

“Cops and Robbers” (Netflix)

“Facing Race” (KING-TV)

 

Judy Woodruff wins Peabody’s Journalistic Integrity Award

Presented by Jane Fonda, Woodruff honored for sustained achievement of the highest professional standards of journalism

Peabody today announced that Judy Woodruff, anchor and managing editor of the PBS NewsHour, has won a Peabody Award for Journalistic Integrity. A special award designated this year, it honors the sustained achievement of the highest professional standards of journalism, as well as personal integrity in reporting the news in challenging times. Jane Fonda presented Woodruff with the honor this morning via video. Woodruff is the first ever recipient of this award. Peabody also offered notable commendation to Journalism Crews, the unsung heroes of news, for all they did in 2020 to serve the public.

Jane Fonda Presents Judy Woodruff with the Peabody Journalistic Integrity Award from Peabody Awards on Vimeo.

“Given the extraordinary circumstances of 2020, the Peabody Board of Jurors felt it important to honor an individual who has dedicated her life to reporting at the highest caliber with integrity no matter the challenges. After half a century of stellar reporting on everything from the Reagan White House to the Iraq War, no one deserves this award more than the esteemed Judy Woodruff,” said Jeffrey Jones, executive director of Peabody. “She is a trailblazer for women journalists and a role model for journalists committed to illuminating the truth at any cost.”

Broadcast journalist Judy Woodruff is the anchor and managing editor of the PBS NewsHour. She has covered politics and other news for five decades at NBC, CNN and PBS. At PBS from 1983 to 1993, she was the chief Washington correspondent for the MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour. From 1984 to 1990, she also anchored PBS’ award-winning documentary series, “Frontline with Judy Woodruff.” Moving to CNN in 1993, she served as anchor and senior correspondent for 12 years; among other duties, she anchored the weekday program “Inside Politics.” She returned to the NewsHour in 2007, and in 2013, she and the late Gwen Ifill were named the first two women to co-anchor a national news broadcast. After Ifill’s death, Woodruff was named sole anchor.  Her reporting career began in Atlanta, Georgia, where she covered state and local government.

Woodruff has covered every presidential campaign and convention since 1976. She has moderated numerous national election debates, including the 1984 Vice Presidential debate between Geraldine Ferraro and George H.W. Bush, as well as a 2016 primary debate between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, which with Ifill, was the first woman duo to moderate a Democratic presidential debate.

Peabody is also making special commendation in recognition of Journalism Crews for their work in 2020 amidst unprecedented challenges. Camera operators, sound and lighting techs, and producers covered the most dangerous public health crisis in a century, as well as one of the largest mass movements for equality across the nation in the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd. Crews also braved hostile rhetorical and physical attacks during a presidential election where the press was deemed “enemies of the people.” Monica Pearson, incoming chairwoman and former anchor of WSB-TV in Atlanta, offered a tribute on behalf of the Peabody Awards.

“In a year in which simply doing their job put their lives at risk due to the deadly coronavirus, they bravely donned masks and PPEs to file nightly reports and in-depth investigations the public needed to know,” said Monica Pearson. “Thank you for your hard work and public service.”

 

Ava DuVernay’s ARRAY wins Peabody’s Institutional Award

Presented by Oprah, ARRAY Honored for Amplifying Film & TV by People of Color and

Women Filmmakers

Peabody today announced that ARRAY, the multi-platform arts and social impact collective dedicated to narrative change founded by filmmaker Ava DuVernay, has won an Institutional Award.

Oprah presented Ava DuVernay with the honor this morning via video.  ARRAY is being recognized for its role in amplifying film and TV projects by people of color and women filmmakers. Selected by the Peabody Board of Jurors, the Institutional Award recognizes institutions and organizations, as well as series and programs, for their enduring body of work and their iconic impact on both the media landscape and the public imagination.

“As an Academy Award nominee and multiple Peabody and Emmy Award winner, Ava has leveraged her remarkable success to amplify and uplift women directors and storytellers of color,” said Jeffrey Jones, executive director of Peabody. “ARRAY has produced an incredible slate of projects centered around Black experiences and has led many inspirational initiatives to support up-and-coming filmmakers of color. It’s an honor to name ARRAY winner of this year’s Institutional Award.”

Oprah presents Peabody Institutional Award to ARRAY and Ava DuVernay from Peabody Awards on Vimeo.

Founded in 2011 by filmmaker Ava DuVernay, ARRAY is as much a center for disruptive institutional and narrative change as it is a production house. Indeed, its creative campus in Historic Filipinotown, Los Angeles is itself a rejection of antiquated Hollywood thinking, not just in foregrounding absent voices and missing representations in front of and behind the camera by people of color and women, but in reimagining how projects are greenlit, created, produced, and distributed, and by whom. In ten short years, ARRAY has built the institutional infrastructure to produce award-winning content in film (Caste) and television (Queen Sugar), across genres of drama (When They See Us), documentary (13th), unscripted (Home Sweet Home), and animation (Wings of Fire).

ARRAY is deeply invested in the social impact of its work and has created educational and learning materials for much of its content, as well as programs such as LEAP (Law Enforcement Accountability Project) to commission art projects in the service of social justice activism. Understanding the enormous opportunity to address diverse hiring practices within the industry, the non-profit ARRAY Alliance recently launched ARRAY Crew, a database for below-the-line production personnel. It’s easy to see that DuVernay and her women-led team at ARRAY have not waited for permission to build, create, grow, and envision a more equitable future for neglected filmmakers, artists, and social activists.  Through brilliant vision and old-fashioned sweat equity, ARRAY has crafted a new way forward in an industry heavily resistant to change.

Recent winners of the Institutional Award include The Simpsons, 60 Minutes, Sesame Street, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Kartemquin Films, FRONTLINE, and ITVS.

The 30 winners of the 81st annual Peabody Awards will be named during a multi-day virtual celebration from June 21st through June 24th. Celebrity presenters will announce each winner via a short video which will include remarks from the winners. Videos will be pushed out on June 21, 22, 23, and 24 between 9 a.m. PT and 10:30 a.m. PT each day.  The winners will be announced on the following platforms:

Twitter:          @PeabodyAwards
Instagram:    @PeabodyAwards
Facebook:      Peabody Awards
Website:         https://peabodyawards.com/
Hashtags:        #PeabodyAwards #StoriesThatMatter

The 60 Peabody nominees can be viewed here.