On Saturday, June 14, The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Michigan Chapter held its 36th Emmy Gala at the Motor City Casino in Detroit. The Michigan EMMY represents the "most experienced and talented television professionals from all disciplines of the industry and from all of Michigan's 11 television markets."
WZZM was honored with 18 Emmy nominations and walked away that night with 10 awards. They are:
Politics/Government - Obamacare Checkup - Josh Aldredge, Val Lego
Editor - News -- Photojournalist Andy Sugden
Feature News Report - Serious Feature -- Brent Ashcroft for Deanie's Room
Societal Concerns - News Feature - Hannah Saunders and Photojournalist Ken Ritz for Flying a Sign
Environment - Sarah Sell and Andy Sugden for Fracking 101
On-camera talent - Reporter - Medical -- Val Lego
Health/Science - News Feature -- Val Lego for Red Dye 40
On-camera talent - Reporter - General-Assignment -- Sarah Barwacz (now working in Milwaukee)
Feature News Report - Light Feature -- Brent Ashcroft and Andy Sugden for The Real Gem.
Writer - News -- Brent Ashcroft
You can watch and read the winners on the following pages.
Brent Ashcroft has been following the story of Deanie Peters for years. In February, Brent traveled to Prescott, Arizona to meet with Deanie's parents for a rare interview and a rare look at the room that they have re-created to look the same as it was on the day when Deanie disappeared - February 5, 1981.
Deanie Peters' parents share their pain after 32 years
Panhandling has raised a lot of questions around West Michigan, with the biggest one being, "Are these people really homeless?" Hannah Saunders and Ken Ritz staked out several corners in the Grand Rapids area in July and found the the true stories behind some of them. The story has also resulted in area communities looking at ordinances that look to balance the rights to free speech and the desires for citizens to not be harassed. It also resulted in one family connecting with a family member for the last time.
Are local panhandlers really homeless?
Another topic making noise in area communities - above and below ground - is fracking, or the process of "hydraulic fracturing" to extract natural gas from the ground. The process, which has become much more larger in scale in recent years, is seen as an economic boost to some, and an environmental nightmare to others.
In February, Sarah Sell and Andy Sugden went to western Pennsylvania where fracking is booming and then asked the question, "Is this good or bad for Michigan?"
Fracking: Good or bad for Michigan?
More than five million children in this country are diagnosed with ADHD, but how many of them truly are? Could some of those children be eating something that only makes them appear to have the condition?
Research suggested a link between children who are hyperactive and appear to have ADHD and red dye #40, a food coloring in hundreds of foods.
WZZM 13 Health Reporter Valerie Lego took a look at how red dye #40 is affecting our children.
Red Dye 40 and ADHD
When spring high school sports wrapped up in 2013, Ralph Burr wrapped up his 50th year of umpiring softball and baseball games. For the last 20 years, his daughter Jackie has also joined him. His son Jeff also has officiated games over the past 36 years.
Brent Ashcroft profiled the family in July.
Umpiring softball & baseball is a family affair