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CMG in the News

    WSB’s Scott Slade is being honored with a nomination for The Radio Hall of Fame -- and you could help him get inducted.  Listeners have until July 28th to cast their vote for Scott Slade, who is nominated in the ‘Spoken Word On-Air Personality’ category alongside three other nominees.  How to vote: Cast your vote by texting the message 60 to 877-370-VOTE (8683). One vote is permitted per cell phone number.  Votes may also be received at www.radiovote.com, where listeners can cast just one vote per email address. Visit the previously mentioned link, or CLICK HERE to vote.  Inductees will be revealed on Monday, August 5th.  As host of ‘Atlanta’s Morning News,’ Scott Slade has led consistently one of the highest-rated radio programs in metro Atlanta for more than 20 years.  Scott is a rare two-time winner of the National Association of Broadcasters Marconi Award as Best Radio Personality in America in both major and large markets.  “Atlanta’s Morning News with Scott Slade” has won several awards since its inception in 1991, including the national Edward R. Murrow Award as Best Radio Newscast in the nation.  Nearly 20 years ago, Scott initiated the WSB Radio Care-a-Thon for the AFLAC Cancer Center at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, raising millions to fight children’s cancer and blood disorders.  Scott’s extensive career in media began almost 50 years ago. As a producer, helicopter traffic reporter, and show host, Scott has been with WSB Radio since 1984.  Since starting his broadcasting career at the age of 15, Scott has won numerous news, programming and advertising awards.  Scott earned his first award in 1971 -- The Associated Press’ “News Interpretation” honor -- for a weekly program in which he and other young journalists interviewed ‘news-makers’ on a local radio station. He is an Atlanta native and graduate of Georgia State University.
  • The Radio Television Digital News Association is honoring WSB's 'Jamie Dupree 2.0' with the prestigious 2019 National Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Innovation.  The RTDNA award is “designed to award legacy radio or television news organizations that innovate their product to enhance the quality of journalism and the audience's understanding of news.”  This is WSB's first National Murrow in 12 years, and the third major award this year for Jamie's '2.0'.  'Jamie's courage and WSB/CMG's leadership in initiating this project has been inspiring. We are honored to have been recognized by RTDNA,' says WSB News Director Chris Camp.  In mid-2016, WSB’s much respected and well-loved 30-year Washington Correspondent Jamie Dupree lost his voice after falling ill on a family vacation. His voice didn’t come back. It took a year of visits to specialists around the country to diagnose the problem—a rare neurological condition called “tongue protrusion dystonia.” No treatment has worked. While Jamie continued blogging, tweeting, and proving invaluable behind-the-scenes guidance, his absence from the air was obviously a major blow to our news coverage, particularly during the 2016 presidential campaign.  A House floor mention of Jamie’s condition by Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen led to CNN, Politico, and The Washington Post picking up his story. And as it became clear that his voice wasn’t returning, our Cox Media Group tech gurus discovered a potentially-pioneering approach to getting Jamie back on the air. They sent years’ worth of his old radio reports to a software company in Scotland. Using hundreds of clips to isolate letters, syllables, and words, Jamie’s voice was essentially re-created electronically. Text-to-voice software then allows him to type his reports, run them through what we dubbed “Jamie Dupree 2.0,” then send them to us as audio.  News-Talk listeners are not known for being bashful with their opinions, and station management had some trepidation about the reaction to the simulated voice. But it was met with genuinely overwhelming affection and encouragement from the audience.  'One of the most rewarding parts of my 'new' voice has been the reaction of our listeners,' Jamie says. 'You cannot imagine all of the supportive messages that I get by email and social media. Yes, there are people out there who have let me know that they hate the new voice, and that they are happy I am not able to speak - but those people are far outnumbered by those who tell me to keep fighting.'  The newsroom’s issue was how to handle Jamie’s return. We wanted to celebrate the moment without seeming exploitative, and the initial electronic voice was jarring enough that listeners would certainly realize it wasn’t real. We determined the answer was simply to cover it as a news story, blanketing it across all platforms and being as transparent as possible with our audience, especially with Jamie determined to press ahead.  'I guess I just look at it in pretty simple terms,” he says. 'I've been dealt a giant curve-ball in life, and curling up in the corner wasn't going to solve anything.” >>WATCH: Voice of Reason: An Intimate Look at Jamie Dupree’s Return to Air
  • WSB is famous for giving Atlanta accurate traffic reports every 6 minutes when our highways are the busiest and when gridlock is at its worst. The time has come for WSB to deliver ‘Triple Team Traffic’ every 6 minutes in the 4pm hour.
  • Over two years after a rare disease took his voice, WSB Radio’s Washington correspondent Jamie Dupree is determined to be heard again.  And last Wednesday, Jamie’s Capitol Hill colleagues recognized his determination and honored him with a ‘Career Achievement Award for Distinguished Reporting on Congress.’  'When life said to be quiet, Jamie found a way to speak louder than ever before,' Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) said to members of the Radio and TV Congressional Correspondent's Association. 'He is an example for every American faced with overwhelming adversity.'  Doctors say a rare neurological condition is making it difficult for Jamie’s brain to tell his tongue what to do while speaking.  He now uses a special voice app developed by a company in Scotland, CereProc, which allows him to use a simple text-to-speech program to generate news reports in his old voice.  'Jamie is not one to step down in the face of adversity,' added Ros-Lehtinen, who used a House floor speech in 2017 to raise awareness about Jamie's medical plight.  VIDEO: Watch Jamie Dupree receive his career achievement award from the RTCA. In remarks delivered for him by CNN correspondent Dana Bash, Jamie encouraged his colleagues to look past the political debate over fake news.  'My advice is simple – ignore that talk. Work harder. Do your jobs even better,' Dupree said, adding, 'Smother your viewers with specifics.  “Overwhelm your listeners with facts. Drench your readers in details.”  Jamie has spent more than three decades covering Capitol Hill.  He is now hoping specialists at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta will help him figure out why he lost his voice. And the reporter in him has not quit.  “He still does interviews; he feeds us audio,” WSB Radio News Director Chris Camp says, adding, “He may not be able to talk, but boy you can hear him awful loud.” Jamie is thankful to all who have wished him well. While the condition has obviously affected his job, that is not what he says hurts him the most.  “Think about not being able to talk to your kids, or your wife or your father or your friends. While my work is hard and different, life is about a lot more than that.”  Jamie says Emory researchers are trying a new treatment that will slow down the movement of his tongue to make it easier for him to speak. In the meantime, he wants everyone to know his overall health is good.  'I've always said Jamie is the most valuable on-air presence on our stations, and he still is,” WSB Radio anchor Chris Chandler says. “There's not a word of news from Washington that he hasn't reported and broken down for us.”   Get Jamie Dupree's take on what's happening in Washington delivered to your inbox every weekday by clicking here.
  • A familiar Cox Radio voice is determined to be heard again. WSB Radio’s Washington correspondent Jamie Dupree has spent more than three decades covering Capitol Hill, but nearly two years ago his method of communication had to change. Doctors say a rare neurological condition is making it difficult for his brain to tell his tongue what to do while speaking. Placing a pen in his mouth helps him speak. “It’s hard, but I am working to come back hard,” Dupree tells WSB. He is now hoping a meeting with specialists at Emory University Hospital will help him figure out why he lost his voice.   And the reporter in him has not quit. “He still does interviews; he feeds us audio,” WSB Radio News Director Chris Camp says. Dupree also covers Congress via Facebook, Twitter, and Cox Media websites.  “He may not be able to talk, but boy you can hear him awful loud,” Camp adds. Dupree is thankful to all who have wished him well. While the condition has obviously affected his job, that is not what he says hurts him the most – “Think about not being able to talk to your kids, or your wife or your father or your friends. While my work is hard and different, life is about a lot more than that.” Channel 2’s Berndt Petersen spoke with Jamie about his struggle over the past couple years: Dupree says Emory researchers are trying a new treatment that will slow down the movement of his tongue to make it easier for him to speak. In the meantime, Jamie wants everyone to know his overall health is good. “Even though he can't speak, Jamie is still the most trusted voice in Washington DC,” WSB’s Bill Caiaccio says of his colleague and friend. “He was already the hardest working reporter in our nation’s capital, and now he works even harder to get the job done.” WSB Radio anchor Chris Chandler echoes those sentiments, saying, 'I've always said Jamie is the most valuable on-air presence on our stations, and he still is. “There's not a word of news from Washington that he hasn't reported and broken down for us.” Mark Arum, WSB traffic anchor and talk show host, adds that Jamie is an invaluable resource: “He might have lost his voice, but he still has the drive to get the story and get it right.” Sabrina Cupit, who anchors midday for WSB Radio, says Jamie is so much more than his voice: “His knowledge of Washington, his connections, his balanced reporting; they are all still a major part of what we do on air everyday here at WSB. “Personally, I have never met a kinder, more honest or just downright great human being in my life. I am praying for the return of his voice. I do miss hearing it.” Get Jamie's take on what's happening in Washington delivered to your inbox every weekday and click the related link below:
  • The U.S. National Whitewater Center voluntarily closed its whitewater rafting activities Friday afternoon after water samples tested positive for a brain-eating amoeba, officials confirmed. >> Read more trending stories The tests, which found Naegleria Fowleri at the Whitewater Center, are preliminary. Final results will not be ready until next week. Visitors said a staff member blew a whistle around 4 p.m. Friday and had everyone get out of the water. The center itself, in Charlotte, North Carolina, is not closed, however, Mecklenburg County Health Department Director Dr. Marcus Plescia said officials 'feel quite certain (the) amoeba is present in (the) Whitewater Center' at a news conference Friday evening. Local, state and federal health officials are investigating after a recent high school graduate, Ohio resident Lauren Seitz, 18, died from a brain-eating amoeba days after visiting the Whitewater Center. >> Related: Teen dies of brain-eating amoeba after whitewater rafting The Health Department is working closely with the Center. Naegleria Fowleri is a brain-eating amoeba found in warm freshwater, like lakes and ponds. It does not make people sick if it's swallowed, but if it goes up a nasal cavity -- where it's close to the brain -- it can be deadly. The amoeba is present in many open water sources and has been linked to 35 illnesses in the last 10 years, Plescia said. He said the risk of getting into a car crash while driving to the Whitewater Center is higher than being infected by the amoeba at the facility. Plescia said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was running tests Wednesday at the facility. The health organization took 11 samples from various parts of the Whitewater Center and found the amoeba in most of them. Testing will continue over the next few days. The Center released a statement: 'The U.S. National Whitewater Center, after discussion with the Centers for Disease Control and local health officials, has decided to temporarily suspend all whitewater activities effective immediately. This decision was made after initial test results found Naegleria Fowleri DNA was present in the whitewater system. The USNWC is working with the CDC and local health officials to develop next steps. Only whitewater activities are suspended. The USNWC remains open for all other operations and activities.