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WGN Hosts Win Two Peter Lisagor Awards

The Lisagor Awards were established in 1977 to “inspire Chicago-area journalists to follow his outstanding example and to recognize truly superior contributions to journalism.”

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A pair of WGN Radio hosts brought home awards from the 2023 Peter Lisagor Awards for journalism in Illinois and Northwest Indiana.

The 46th annual awards banquet was held at the Union League Club of Chicago on Friday.

Host John Williams took home the award for Best Featured Reporter or Host. Williams hosts the station’s midday show, including the Wintrust Business Lunch, from 10:00 AM-2:00 PM. After originally debuting on WGN in 1997, Williams has been in his current role at the station since 2017.

Additionally, afternoon host Lisa Dent took home the award for Best Political and Government Reporting for her report on Illinois gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey’s change in his stance on abortion from June of last year. Dent hosts on WGN from 2:00-6:00 PM after joining the station in 2021. She previously spent the majority of her career working in the country format, and was inducted into the Country Radio Hall of Fame in 2016.

According to The Chicago Headline Club, the Lisagor Awards were established in 1977 to “inspire Chicago-area journalists to follow his outstanding example and to recognize truly superior contributions to journalism.”

Peter Lisagor worked as the Washington bureau chief of the Chicago Daily News from 1959 to 1976 and “was one of the nation’s most respected and well-known journalists” the organization touts.

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Sean Hannity: I’m Honest About My Agenda When So Many in Media Aren’t

“You can be honest about your agenda. Just be honest. People will respect you more.”

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A photo of Sean Hannity and his radio show logo

There are often charges from one side of the political aisle to the other about media bias. Sean Hannity believes you can avoid those criticisms if you’re honest about your intentions.

On The Sean Hannity Show Wednesday, the nationally syndicated host argued that while he’s often accused of being just a talking head, he’s a journalist.

“Yes, we practice journalism. And yes, I’m a member of the press, and yes, we do investigative reporting. Yes, we give opinion, but we’re honest about it, unlike the other liars, frauds in the mob and the media,” said Hannity. “We give opinion. They do, but they never admit it or acknowledge it, and claim ‘I’m a journalist.’

“No, you’re not. You’re a left-wing political hack with an agenda. But you can be honest about your agenda. Just be honest. People will respect you more.”

Hannity’s comments came after he reported that Jim Biden, the brother of President Joe Biden, was being deposed before the House Oversight Committee and the House Judiciary Committee as part of an investigation into alleged bribes the President, his son, and brother, received from various foreign and domestic entities.

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Bill Handel: Everyone Got Into Our Business Differently

“My way was different. (John) Kobylt’s way, Tim Conway’s was different. It’s just different.”

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A photo of Bill Handel and the KFI logo
(Photo: KFI)

In the talk radio space, there are many different origin stories. Some hosts are former politicians, some are former lawyers, and some came to the format after previously working in other genres. KFI AM-640 morning host Bill Handel shared that’s what makes the format great.

“I get up at three o’clock in the morning. I always get up and go read,” said Handel. “I’m reading a biography of Stanley Kubrick. Oh, really interesting, interesting guy, how he got into movies,” said Handel. “It’s always everybody has a different way of getting into movies.

“Everybody has a different way of getting this job. And that is a talk show host. It’s just all different ways of doing it. My way was different,” said Handel. “(John) Kobylt’s way, Tim Conway’s was different. It’s just different.”

Bill Handel — who was born in Brazil before immigrating to the United States when he was five years old — practiced law before ultimately landing a radio show. He now hosts mornings at KFI along with a nationally syndicated weekend show, Handel on the Law.

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Bill O’Reilly: I’m Still Working Because I Need a Place to Vent

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A photo of Bill O'Reilly
(Photo: Andrew Harnik | AP)

Bill O’Reilly has had an accomplished media career spanning multiple decades. So it would be natural to question why the 74-year-old is still working. He shared there’s one simple reason for that.

During a discussion with 77 WABC morning host Sid Rosenberg, Bill O’Reilly admitted he puts in too much effort for a man his age.

“I’m working way too hard for an old guy. why am I doing this? It’s really a neurosis. I am neurotic. There’s no doubt,” he joked.

When Rosenberg posited that O’Reilly is “too smart” to sit back and enjoy retirement, the former cable news host argued his career continuing is actually more about continuing to have an avenue to share his opinions.

“I get so annoyed and sometimes even angry at the unfairness of our country, that I’ve got to have a place to vent. That’s why I work. I’m comfortable. I’ve worked hard my whole life. I can do what I want to do. I could go over to Switzerland and yodel. I could just go to Tahiti and do the little fire dance.

“But it gets me so angry, and when I see people like me, from Levittown, from Brooklyn, from the Bronx, wherever, working their butt off to try to improve their state in life and give their family a nice life. And every time they turn around, they’re getting it right between the eyes by the corrupt incompetent people who are running our country.”

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