Congratulations to my friend and fellow radio talk show host Rick Amato for notching a BIG win at Tuesday night’s San Diego Press Club Journalism Awards. In his FIRST time ever entering this prestigious competition, Rick won first place in the Radio Interview category.
The winning entry from “The Rick Amato Show Presented by The Washington Times” originally aired in July 2008. It focused on the use of drugs with known drastic side effects such as suicidal behavior by the Veterans Administration in treating wounded veterans from the war on terror in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The guests were reporter Audrey Hudson of The Washington Times (who broke the story), a whistleblowing veteran and Congressman Bob Filner (D-CA), Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs.
Shortly after the interview Congressman Filner called a congressional hearing on Capitol Hill which resulted in changes at the VA and its procedures.
The judges comments on Rick’s winning entry: “An important and shocking story. Because of this show change was affected and possibly lives were saved. The reaction of the congressman was priceless.” Wow – it doesn’t get better than this!
The Rick Amato Show also notched a third place award for my interview of Craig Newmark, founder of Craigslist. I’m thrilled to be in such good company.
This is truly an impressive achievement. The San Diego Press Club Journalism Awards are the region’s largest competition for local journalists in print, broadcast, and online media with nearly 1,000 entries, and a highly sought after prize. For someone to win this category in his first year of eligibility, against programs with many more resources and hosts with far more experience is hard to overstate. I’ve been around broadcasting 30 years and can’t ever recall anything like this.
Please offer Rick your congratulations at www.amatotalk.com And if you aren’t already a regular listener to the show, what in the world are you waiting for? “The Rick Amato Show” airs nightly from 9 to 11 p.m. on KCBQ AM 1170. It can be heard at www.kcbq.com All shows are archived for later listening at www.amatotalk.com