NECIR wins two Regional Murrow Awards for radio

An investigation into illicit massage parlors and a series about a man’s life after being wrongfully imprisoned for 38 years earned the New England Center for Investigative Reporting and WGBH News two Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards, among the most prestigious honors for broadcast and digital news.

A multi-part series by Jenifer McKim and Philip Martin for WGBH radio, “The Business of Illicit Massage,” won Best Investigative Series, large market radio. McKim and Martin took a deep-dive look into the insidious illicit massage industry in Massachusetts and across the United States, focusing on the technology that promotes it and seldom heard stories of sex buyers and prostituted women. Hear and read the series.

Chris Burrell’s series for WGBH radio, “Wrongfully Jailed for 38 Years, Fred Clay Rebuilds His Life,” earned Best News Series, large market radio. Over a year’s time, Burrell followed the life of Fred Clay as he reentered a world outside a prison he entered at 16. Hear and read the series.

The two awards were among five awarded to WGBH News.

Following the awards announced Tuesday, each series now advances to the National Murrow Award competition, with winners to be announced in June.

The Radio Television Digital News Association has been honoring outstanding achievements in electronic journalism with the Edward R. Murrow Awards since 1971. Award recipients demonstrate the spirit of excellence that Murrow set as a standard for the profession of electronic journalism.

The New England Center for Investigative Reporting, a nonprofit newsroom based at Boston University and WGBH News, seeks to expose injustice through investigative reporting and training. Learn more at