2009 Director’s Community Leadership Awards
|Knoxville||William M. Shorty
News Director, WBIR
Mr. Shory is currently the news director for NBC local television station WBIR, Channel 10, in Knoxville, Tennessee. He is a member of the Radio-Television News Directors Association, the Society of Professional Journalists, and the board of directors of the Tennessee Associated Press Broadcasters Association. He is also a fellow of the Carole Kneeland Project for Responsible Journalism.
Since moving to East Tennessee, Mr. Shory has been a staunch advocate of safe communities by developing partnerships between community stakeholders and his television station. As a true community activist, he works tirelessly to engage the community. His commitment, as a member of the media, to keeping the public informed of the FBI’s priorities and missions is evidenced by the numerous broadcasts he has done that feature the FBI.
Under his direction, WBIR has won numerous awards, including two regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for Overall Excellence and one National Edward R. Murrow Award. The Society of Professional Journalists also honored WBIR with both the Horace V. Wells Community Service Award and the Golden Press Card Award for investigating corruption in Knox County government.
From 2007 until the present, under Mr. Shory’s leadership, WBIR has aired approximately 673 segments featuring the FBI. Many of the segments were in-depth feature stories highlighting a number of Knoxville’s community outreach initiatives, including Citizens’ Academy classes and Teen Academy classes. Special Agent in Charge Richard Lambert and Public Affairs Specialist Stacie Bohanan have been invited to the WBIR set for live interviews in support of the FBI mission. The station sent two photojournalists, who had completed the Citizens’ Academy program, to Washington, D.C. to produce a feature story about the FBI Knoxville Alumni Association and its annual trip to Washington.
All stories featuring the FBI have been posted to the WBIR website, where thousands of additional viewers have been able to learn about the FBI. Many of the stories have earned honors as the “Most Read Stories” of the day after being posted on the station’s website.