Not only is Eileen Buckley an award-winning reporter, but she is also the assistant news director for WBFO-FM 88.7 and the sole woman on our news team downstairs. She actually got her start as an intern with WBFO in 1984! How cool is that? I was lucky enough to ask a few questions this past week so our readers could get to know a little bit more about her.
AD: Why did you want to get involved in journalism?
EB: I wanted to work in a radio newsroom since my first day at my college radio station as freshmen. But what really gave me the “news bug” was my first internship at WGR-55’s newsroom in 1983. I would gather news information and write traffic reports while working directly under radio news veterans. Watching and learning how they gathered and anchored news or reacted in live-on-air situations immediately filtered into my blood. It trained me for a “nose for news.” There was something about the thrill of chasing details of a breaking/developing story that enticed me to pursue a career as a radio journalist. You also realize how powerful radio can be when people begin to hear the stories and interviews you present, some positive, some negative responses. Revealing issues and concerns of citizens is most powerful.
AD: What are some of your favorite things about producing news for the public?
EB: Producing public radio news stories allow you to be creative with writing, natural sound and interviews. My favorite is mixing sounds with voices and music. Sometimes an audio postcard is much more exciting to produce. I also like the challenge of getting as many voices in a story that is possible within a five minute story. Favorite stories are those that involve human interest and interviewing children and teens. Bringing young voices to the airwaves provides a refreshing perspective then your daily newsmakers!
AD: What does a typical day look like for you?
EB: My typical day begins with reading newspapers, wire service, internet, media stories, collecting news releases and advisories for our news desk. I update and post news, audio and photos to our website. I cover news conferences or news events and spot news coverage of any breaking story which includes conducting interviews and taking photos/videos of the event for our digital platforms. Often, I conduct in-studio or phone interviews to be produced into feature stories or two-way interviews and assign our news team and help make decisions on day-to-day coverage. Throughout the day, I write news scripts and produce audio for the news desk and prepare Morning Edition stories in both long and short form. A newsroom is fluid—anything can happen in the news world – locally, regionally, nationally and globally. You have to always be ready to react, ready to drop what you were planning to produce and set up new coverage plans. You must think fast, write fast and produce audio quickly to keep up with on-air and web deadlines.
So there is a little insight into Eileen and what her daily life looks like around here at WBFO.