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Buffalo Broadcasters Association announces Hall of Fame class, applications open for student award

The Buffalo Broadcasters Association's 2021 Hall of Fame inductees stand for a photo at the announcement press conference.
The Buffalo Broadcasters Association's 2021 Hall of Fame inductees stand for a photo at the announcement press conference.

The Buffalo Broadcasters Association has announced it will induct the largest class ever into its Hall of Fame this year.

The 2021 class includes familiar names and faces, including WKBW's Eileen Buckley, WIVB’s Al Vaughters and WGRZ’s Mike Igoe, as well as behind-the-scenes journalists Mickey Osterreicher of WKBW and Andy DeSantis of WGRZ.

Buckley, who is being inducted in the Hall of Fame Radio category, and spent much of her career at WBFO, reflects on what the award means to her.

"I've always felt like I was at the bottom of the media pile climbing my way up through the years, watching all these great veterans and getting this honor. So, it's really wonderful, because you don't realize, you know, as the decades passed, I didn't realize how much work I was doing, how many stories I was telling. And all of a sudden, to have this honor, it just, it makes you feel a little old and it makes you feel a little sentimental. And it just feels very surreal," Buckley said.

WBFO News photo
A file photo of Eileen Buckley, who is currently a reporter at WKBW.

Charlie Banta of Mercury Capital Partners, Heidi Raphael of Beasley Media Group, and Bob and Ellen Knechtel of the former WBEN-TV also won awards for management, national work, and innovation.

The entire group will be celebrated in November at the Buffalo Broadcasters Association's Hall of Fame Dinner. Additionally, a student journalist will be honored with the Tim Russert Media Career Award, which submissions are currently are being accepted for until September 30. Buckley also offered some advice for aspiring storytellers.

"You know, just try to be knowledgeable about as much of your community as you can. Read a lot, read, you know, the many different sources that are out there. Try to stick with news that's credible. Be balanced, be fair, and be kind to people, and that will really help your career," Buckley said.

Emyle Watkins is an investigative journalist covering disability for WBFO.