The Founder's Award

The Founder's Award was created to honor Jeff Hawkinson, who was TV-10's first news director and was instrumental in the program's creation in 1974. Hawkinson went on to a very successful career in television journalism and corporate communication.  Despite failing health, he and his wife Cathi maintained an active interest in TV-10 and its students over the past several years, up until his death in February 2010. The award is presented each year to an outstanding graduating senior. Our thanks to Cathi for donating the perpetual plaque that now hangs in the TV-10 newsroom.

Jeff Burnett The 2016 winner is eagerly covering the political arena at all levels. Jeff Burnett covered President Obama's Spring 2016 visit to Springfield, Donald Trump's Springfield campaign rally, Governor Bruce Rauner's town hall meeting in Bloomington, as well as local elections and city government meetings. He will continue this involvement as a student in the Public Affairs Reporting program at UIS in Fall 2016.
At TV-10, along with the political reporting, Jeff was a producer and anchor of the newscast, and of the specialty show "The Bottom Line." And at WZND radio, he did news and sports reporting, and was a DJ.
Jeff Burnett
2016 Founder's Award Winner

Past winners include:
2015: Kristi O'Connor - Multimedia Journalist and Anchor/Producer at WCYB-TV in Bristol, Virginia
2014: Alexandra Wilson - Multimedia Journalist and Anchor/Producer at KTVO-TV in Kirksville, Missouri
2013: Joe Brand - Broadcaster for the Kane County Cougars Baseball Team
2013: Ali (Harris) Murray - High school English teacher in Phoenix, Arizona
2012: Kate Pabich - Video Producer for the Wisconsin Legislature
2011: Lauren (Potter) Stream - Producer/Reporter at WICD-TV in Champaign
2010: Lindsey Boetsch - Reporter/Weekend Weathercaster at FirstCoast News in Jacksonville, Florida
2009: Chip Brewster - Lifestyle Reporter at KPRC-TV in Houston
2009: Jacob Long - Reporter at KSDK-TV in St. Louis
2008: Christy (Stelzer) McFarland - now in Communications at Country Financial in Bloomington; previously at WMBD-TV, Peoria
2007: Cami (Mountain) Weinkauf - now a full-time Mom; previously Morning Anchor/Reporter at WAOW-TV, Wausau, Wisconsin
2006: Kelly Larson - Grant Writer at Joliet Junior College. Previously at WJFW-TV, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, and WICS-TV, Springfield
2005: Meghan (Fisher) Lundeen - now in communications for Caterpillar's Global Information Systems in East Peoria; previously at WHOI-TV, Peoria.
.TV10 Awards winners
The first Founder's Award was presented to student Alexandra Bennett at the TV-10 30th anniversary reunion in 2004. She is pictured here with Jeff Hawkinson.
She went on to work as a general assignment reporter at WTWO-TV, Terre Haute.