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SoCal Connected Wins Four Golden Mike Awards

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Los Angeles - January 21, 2012 - KCET, the nation's largest independent public television station serving Southern and Central California, is pleased to announce SoCal Connected, the station's hard-hitting weekly news program was honored with four Golden Mike Awards® in division A by the Radio & Television News Association of Southern California (RTNA), including Best News Public Affairs Program, Best Documentary, Best Investigative Reporting and Best Original News Commentary.

Formally announced at the awards ceremony on Saturday, the Golden Mike Awards® recognize excellence in broadcast journalism.  Last year, SoCal Connected received seven Golden Mikes - more than any other station. 

"We're proud to be honored by Golden Mike Awards® for a fourth season in a row," said Bret Marcus Executive Producer of SoCal Connected and KCET chief content officer.  "SoCal Connected is committed to producing quality investigative reporting that can make a difference in our communities, and we're excited to be recognized for our work."

SoCal Connected, winner of the Peabody and duPont-Columbia awards, has also won 14 Emmy® Awards, a total of 19 Golden Mikes, including two for Best News Public Affairs Show, 25 LA Press Club Awards for journalism, the Edward R. Murrow Award for Best News Documentary and Los Angeles Magazine's "Best New Local TV Program" of 2009.

Below is a complete list of SoCal Connected's 2011 Golden Mike Award wins, along with links to segments, descriptions and names of the individual winners in each category: 

Best News Public Affairs Program

SoCal Connected: "Red Light Cameras"/ "Meter Madness"/ "Slow Down & Shut Up"

You've got to watch out for more than just road hazards when you're driving around town.  First, correspondent Judy Muller examines the business of red light camera tickets.  They cost a lot of money, but do they make us any safer?  Next correspondent Laurel Erickson explores the bizarre and punitive world of parking in West Hollywood.  And finally, humorist Brian Unger has a few thoughts about his own forte - talking - and when it's just the right time to keep quiet.  Bret Marcus-Executive Producer, Justine Schmidt-Co-Executive Producer, Kat Keeney-Broadcast Producer, Karen Foshay-Producer, Val Zavala- Anchor, Judy Muller-Correspondent, Laurel Erickson-Correspondent, Brian Unger-Commentator, Rocio Zamora-Associate Producer, Lata Pandya-Associate Producer, Alberto Arce-Editor, Michael Bloecher-Editor, Peggy Holter-Story Editor.

Best Documentary

"Separated by War: The Homecoming"

Marine Staff Sgt. Tim Gallagher represents the new face of America's military -- service members with children. More than 40% have at least one child younger than 18 years old. Staff Sgt. Gallagher left his wife and three young children behind for his tour of duty in Afghanistan. The family bands together during his dangerous deployment and welcomes him home in a poignant reunion seven months later.  Bret Marcus-Executive Producer, Justine Schmidt-Co-Executive Producer, Angela Shelley-Producer, Steve Lopez-Correspondent, Christal Smith-Associate Producer, Michael Bloecher-Editor.

Best Investigative Reporting

"Show Me the Money: The Junketeer"

Hundred-thousand-dollar trips. Lunches and dinners at the swankiest restaurants. Gifts ranging from iPods to monogrammed sweaters. That's what SoCal Connected found in its groundbreaking investigation into spending by officials at HACLA - the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles -- ironically, the billion-dollar agency responsible for sheltering the city's most vulnerable residents.  The year-long investigation showed an agency out of control and accountable to no one, with literally thousands of bills and receipts to prove it.  In the end, the head of the Housing Authority, Ken Simmons, was fired from his job just eight months after his predecessor, Rudy Montiel had also been ousted.  The story's team for all four episodes included:  Bret Marcus-Executive Producer, Justine Schmidt-Co-Executive Producer, Karen Foshay-Producer, Laurel Erickson-Correspondent, Lata Pandya-Associate Producer; Rocio Zamora, Associate Producer; Alberto Arce-Editor; Peggy Holter, Story Editor.

Best Original News Commentary

"West Hollywood Fur Ban"

SoCal Connected's humorist Brian Unger looks at one of the country's most politically correct communities, West Hollywood, and the controversial legislation they endorse, like banning fur clothing.

About SoCal Connected

SoCal Connected, winner of the Peabody and duPont-Columbia awards, 14 Emmy® Awards, 19 Golden Mikes, 25 LA Press Club Awards, the Edward R. Murrow Award for Best News Documentary and Los Angeles Magazine's "Best New Local TV Program" of 2009, airs Fridays (9:00 p.m.), with encores Saturdays (6 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.), Sundays (1:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.) and Mondays (10:30 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.) exclusively on KCET. For more information, to view episodes online or to post comments, please visit

SoCal Connected is made possible through the generous support of The Ahmanson Foundation, serving the Los Angeles community since 1952; Jim and Anne Rothenberg; The Maddocks-Brown Foundation; The Elizabeth Hofert-Dailey Trust; The John Randolph Haynes & Dora Haynes Foundation; The City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs and UCLA.

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