WLOX-TV: Coverage of Hurricane Katrina (WLOX-TV)
Winner 2005 | WLOX-TV
As Hurricane Katrina ripped the roof off the WLOX-TV newsroom, destroyed a wing of the station’s home, toppled one of its towers, disabled news bureaus in adjacent counties, and forced the staff to seek shelter in another section of the building, the broadcasts continued. For twelve days during the fiercest Katrina hours and into the aftermath, WLOX transmitted vital information to the South Mississippi region. The station supplied viewers with information regarding shelter, food and medicine by collaborating with local radio and newspaper organizations and even providing its signal to a competing television station for several days. Other stations in the Liberty Corp. chain of stations assisted by carrying WLOX webcasts when the station’s streaming capability was disabled by the storm. Those who depended on these efforts responded. “I would have a hard time finding all the adjectives that would do justice to the superlative job that you and your colleagues did before, during, and especially after the storm.” “Thanks for giving us some semblance of normalcy during such a terrifying time.” “How wonderful to find out what was going on beyond our rural community.” It lessened our anxieties and made us feel as if the world was still there.” In short, WLOX provided the voice and views for the region, offering reassurance, and fostering a sense of community. These efforts reflect the efforts of executive producers Dave Vincent, Leon Long, Natalie Campen, Rayanne Weiss, Doug Walker, and Todd Durbin. They worked with producers Preston Benson, Angela Goundas, Shilo Groover, Karen Monroe, Meggan Gray, and Alicia Nicely. Directors included Jimmy Mcintyre, Lee Field, Sherida Harden, and Matt Renot. Renee Johnson and Mark Pardee designed web materials. Dozens of photographers, videographers and reporters took on dangerous assignments to bring vital information to those able to receive it and pass it on. For the courageous efforts of all these staff members a Peabody Award goes to WLOX-TV, Biloxi, Mississippi.