March 31, 2023

Enter NOW for the 2021 INBA Crystal Mic Awards!

We are excited to announce the return of the INBA Crystal Mic Awards. We introduced this contest last year to continue recognizing the hard work of Illinois broadcast journalists following the end of state AP award contests. Last year we were grateful to honor the important and difficult work done in 2020 during our fall convention in Rockford. This fall, awards will be presented in Bloomington. Check out the entry details below.

For work completed July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022

Entries accepted starting July 1, 2022 at

Entry Deadline: August 8, 2022

Awards presented: October 8 at the Illinois News Broadcasters Association Fall Convention in Bloomington.


Categories for Station Entries:

INBA Crystal Mic Award: Best Station (Large and Small Market Television and Radio)

INBA Paul Davis Crystal Mic Award: Best Newscast (Large and Small Market Television

and Radio)

INBA Crystal Mic Award: Best Weather Operation (Large and Small Market Television


INBA Crystal Mic Award: Best Digital Presence (Large and Small Market Television and


Categories for Individual Entries:

INBA Crystal Mic Award: Best Reporter (Large and Small Market Television and Radio)

INBA Crystal Mic Award: Breaking News (Large and Small Market Television and Radio)

INBA Crystal Mic Award: Investigative Report (Large and Small Market Television and


INBA Crystal Mic Award: Use of Sound – (Large and Small Market Radio)

INBA Crystal Mic Award: Use of Video (Large and Small Market Television)

INBA Crystal Mic Award: Writing (Large and Small Market Television and Radio)

INBA Crystal Mic Award: Sports Report (Large and Small Market Television and Radio)

Aaron Eades

As a student, it's often difficult to picture what working in the real world will be like. For me, the INBA bridged that gap by giving me the chance to talk to professionals who used to be in the same shoes I'm in now.

Mike Miletich

Joining the INBA was one of my best life decisions. I met some of the best broadcast journalists while I was still a college student. Plus, I ended up getting a job through the connections I made!

Andrew Tanielian

INBA taught me how to network in a meaningful way. The scholarship process taught me how to endure a hard job interview and thrive.

Bob Roberts

INBA is as much about friendship and as it is about achieving common goals. It provides two things individual newsrooms cannot: in-service training, and the ability to speak out on issues affecting the profession. But most of all, it brings newspeople together.

Nora Baldner

The support INBA gives to student journalists is vitally important as we all discover how technology is changing news dissemination, INBA monitors and actively encourages truth, transparency and accountability from students and their universities.

Jeff Bossert

When I was working in radio for the first time, I had no idea whether I could truly handle the demands. But INBA made me curious and want to improve. Even now, when I’ve maybe worked a lot of hours or planned some stories that didn’t come together for one reason or another, what I learn from an INBA conference gets me re-invigorated about the business.

Ryan Denham

I recently attended my first INBA conference—and it won’t be my last. The combination of professional and student journalists learning together is electric. Everyone learns from each other and walks away with new friends (and LinkedIn connections). I know I did.

Brian O'Keefe

One of the greatest benefits for me has been getting to see and know other parts of the state. I’m not from Illinois and traveling to spring and fall conventions over the years has transformed dots on a map to memories of places that enhance my story telling process.

Michelle Eccles McLaughlin

INBA is an organization that really caters to continuing education for professionals. It offers a relatively inexpensive way to learn new things, reinforce best practices and network.

Alexis McAdams

INBA played a huge part in preparing me for my broadcasting career. The INBA conventions connect students with on-air talent and news directors who give feedback on now to improve your work. Through relationships I made at those conventions, I was able to obtain my first on air reporting job.

Jennifer Fuller

INBA is not only a great networking tool, it also provides advocacy and support for journalists in an ever-changing world.

Molly Jirasek

One of my top goals in my career was to get to Chicago. Thanks to INBA I met Margaret Larkin. She remembered our great conversations about Chicago and first alerted me to a job opening in the city I might be interested in. Lo and behold, I got that job! INBA helped me reach my dream.

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