On March 14, 2015 the Christopher Columbus High School cafeteria, which usually serves food for 1,500 students, was transformed into a fancy ballroom, to host our 2nd Annual Media Excellence Awards show. The event featured a cocktail party and a dinner to recognize and honor South Florida news journalists that have inspired students from both Christopher Columbus and Our Lady of Lourdes High School. This years event housed well over 300 people and was trending via social media around the City of Miami.
The night got off to an amazing start that was highlighted by the red carpet event. Journalists from local news stations were able to walk the red carpet for a change instead of working it. I had the privilege of interviewing almost every award nominee including NBC 6’s Roxanne Vargas. Vargas brought excitement to the red carpet like no other and also emceed the night’s event. Other notable colleagues of hers who were in attendance were Pam Giganti, who won the award for Best News Anchor, and Laura Rodriguez, who won Best General Assignment Reporter. “I am extremely impressed with what you all do here at CCNN” said WSVN7’s Craig Stevens on the red carpet. Kevin Ozebek, also from WSVN, could not wait to get into the event!
The first award that was handed out honored Columbus Alum, Andres Triay, for his support to the program and his inspiring work in the field. “I attended Columbus and to see this program grow is amazing” said Triay after accepting his award. Other notable winners were Local 10’s Will Manso who won Best Sports Reporter, Telemundo’s Mariana Rodriguez who took home the award for Best Entertainment Reporter, CBS4’s John Gerrard who won Best Weather Personality, and Local 10’s John Turchin who won Best Investigative Reporter.
Not only did the award show recognize those on camera but it also recognized those who work off camera. The popular twitter icon, Joy Taylor, from 104.3 FM The Ticket, won the award for Best Use of Social Media, South Florida High School Sports’ JT Wilcox took home the MEA for Best Print Writer, and Power 96’s Lucy Lopez won the award for Best On-Air Radio Personality.
The two biggest awards of the night were awarded to Local 10 for Best Television Broadcast and Telemundo for Best Spanish Broadcast. The 2nd Annual Media Excellence Awards show was yet another success for Christopher Columbus High School. What does year three have in store for us next year?