UM Journalism Graduates Recognized During E.B. Craney Awards Banquet

June 23, 2015

MISSOULA – University of Montana School of Journalism alumna Melissa Jensen credited her professors after she earned the prestigious E.B. Craney Radio Newscast of the Year Award on June 13.

“The (journalism) school, in my opinion,” Jensen said, “just has such fabulous professors.”

Jensen’s Helena-area radio program, “The Mighty Mo Radio Show Newscast,” was among several UM School of Journalism alumni and student projects recognized during this month’s E.B. Craney Awards Banquet at the Montana Broadcasters Convention in Big Sky.

Jensen, who earned a bachelor’s degree in broadcast journalism in 1998 and a master’s degree in interdisciplinary studies 12 years later, attributes the success of journalism school alumni and students largely to the investment professors give their students.

“I felt that they wanted me to succeed, and that they really cared about where we ended up,” Jensen said.

Other UM alumni who received E.B. Craney Awards include Jeanelle Slade, who was named Broadcaster of the Year for her work with the Billings CBS affiliate KTVQ. Dustin Askim of KULR-8 in Billings garnered first place in the Television Spot News category for reporting the story, “Shooting Outside of Billings Clinic,” which chronicled the events surrounding the January death of a wanted man by U.S. marshals.

Second place winners include KPAX’s James Rafferty, who earned recognition in the Television Station Promotion category and in the Television News Enterprise reporting slot. Erin Yost-Miller, also of KPAX, came in second in the Television Weathercaster of the Year competition.

“Montana Journal: 100 and Counting,” meanwhile, produced by UM students Tim Blodgett, Emily Proctor, Don Fisher, Sam Waldorf and Kevin Kenly placed second in the Television Non-Commercial Program of the Year slot. 

The Craney Awards constitute only the most recent batch of accolades bestowed upon School of Journalism students and alumni. Earlier this month, recent graduate Madelyn Beck earned second place in the Hearst Journalism Awards National Championships.

On June 6, UM graduate Mackenzie Enich and senior Ed Huberman earned a first-place student award in the 2015 Northwest Regional Emmy Awards for their UM News piece “University Construction Jobs Stimulate the Local Economy.”

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Contact: Jessica Mayrer, communication and events coordinator, UM School of Journalism, 406-239-1682,