Telecommunication Students Dominate OBEA Awards

April 6, 2003

Thirteen OBU students won top awards (1st, 2nd or 3rd place) competing in 25 different radio or television categories at the annual competition.

Leading the way was Jerod Chambers, Lawton senior, with first place in TV Commercial, first place in Corporate Video, first place in TV Magazine, and second place in TV PSA.

Adam Copus, Eakly senior, won second place in TV Commercial, first place in TV Feature News, and first place in TV PSA.

Todd Shepherd, Shawnee senior, won third place in TV Spot News, first place in Radio Aircheck, and first place in Radio News.

Nick Jones, Huntington, Ind., junior, won first place for TV Entertainment. Tyler James, Marshall, Texas, junior, won first place for TV Spot News. Jones and James shared first place for Radio Sports Coverage.

Other winners were: Alison Smith, Boulder, Colo., senior, second place in TV Feature News; Erin Gray, Salt Lake City, Utah, senior, third place in TV Feature News and second place in TV Spot News; Matt Tinley, Miami, Fla., sophomore, second place in Music Video and first place in TV Photography; Kyle Isenhower, Claremore senior, second place in TV Promo; Lauren Wood, Houston, Texas, senior, third place TV Promo and, with Midwest City junior Jonathan Youngblood, second place in Radio Magazine; Joy Russell, Bartlesville senior, third place in TV Sports Coverage; and H.R. Sweat, Van Alstyne, Texas, freshman, first place in Radio Commercial.

The awards were presented at the Oklahoma Association of Broadcasters Conference in Tulsa on March 28. Judges were independent professional broadcasters from OAB stations. Seventeen Oklahoma schools are members of the OBEA and were eligible to enter the annual competition.

This year there were 242 entries with 75 total awards (first through third place) presented.

"Our performance in my estimation was the most dominating of any school since the competition was started 12 years ago," said Dr. Roger Hadley, OBU professor of telecommunication. "We won over one-third of all the awards in the competition - and 13 first place awards. We swept first, second and third place awards in two separate categories - TV Spot News and TV Feature News - the two TV categories with the most entries."

The 13 winning awards marked the most first place awards ever won by OBU students. The previous high was five.

"The quality of the OBU students' work is truly incredible in a state that has some outstanding broadcasting programs," said Hadley. "And we're not just competing against NAIA schools or Bible colleges. We competed among the biggest and brightest that the state of Oklahoma has to offer.

"This group of students is among the most dedicated, hard-working and competitive that I've ever had - they deserve all the recognition they received," he added. "They did some things that no other school has ever done or may ever do again."