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Aspen Public Radio receives Awards of Excellence and Certificates of Merit from the Colorado Broadcasters Association

2023 CBA Awards of Excellence
Steve Hostetler

On Saturday, April 6, the Colorado Broadcasters Association held its annual Awards of Excellence Gala to recognize Colorado’s best broadcast work in 2023. This year, the CBA received 533 radio entries, across numerous competition categories and market sizes, with Aspen Public Radio proudly taking home eight awards: four top honors and four certificates of merit.

The Colorado Broadcasters Association (CBA) was founded in 1949 as a non-profit trade organization to represent broadcasters, both public and private, and to formally interact with state and national officials and trade groups to further the business of broadcasting. With a mission to continuously build a stronger broadcast industry, annual awards recognize excellence in radio and television throughout Colorado.

Aspen Public Radio’s submissions for work done in 2023 were judged by out-of-state professional broadcasters against entries from other radio stations in the medium-sized radio market, which includes public and commercial stations in 36 diverse communities across the state, including Glenwood Springs, Carbondale, Vail, Dillon, Steamboat Springs, Durango, Alamosa, Delta, Craig, and more. In the CBA awards, there are two levels of recognition, “awards of excellence” (first place) and “certificates of merit” (second place).

Aspen Public Radio was recognized with awards of excellence in the following categories:

Reporters Eleanor Bennett and Halle Zander both earned CBA awards of excellence for work done in 2022 and 2021, with Bennett winning CBA’s “Best News Feature” category in the medium-sized radio market every year from 2020-2023.

Additionally, all four Aspen Public Radio reporters received additional recognition, earning certificates of merit in the following categories:

Aspen Public Radio news director, Kelsey Brunner, responded to the announcement saying, “This team of reporters are so passionate about their craft and work hard to produce stories that are important to our community.” She continued, “It is an honor to see their stories recognized for the quality journalism that it is and to be able to celebrate this accomplishment."

These distinctions build on awards received by the Aspen Public Radio news team for work done in 2022 and work done in 2021, and contribute to the continued excellence of Rocky Mountain Community Radio (RMCR), where Aspen Public Radio executive director, Breeze Richardson, serves as president. RMCR is a coalition of 20 non-commercial radio stations in Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming.

In fact, Rocky Mountain Community Radio won a combined 31 CBA awards across all markets, exceeding the coalition’s total last year of 25 awards, with Aspen Public Radio earning eight (8), KSUT in Ignacio winning six (6), KUNC in Greeley winning four (4), KRFC in Fort Collins winning four (4), KUVO in Denver winning four (4), KVNF in Paonia/Montrose winning two (2), KOTO in Telluride winning two (2), and KGNU in Boulder/Denver winning one (1).

A complete 2023 CBA awards list by market is available here.