The American Women in Radio and Television recently announced the winners of its 2008 Gracie® Awards, recognizing Erin Goff, editorial director of the Brigham Young University Daily News, for her role as executive producer in the film “An Off-Court Story: The Life of Kresimir Cosic” in the Best Portrait/Biography category.
“Receiving a Gracie statue, from AWRT, will hopefully get this documentary a little more national attention,” said Goff. “It is such an amazing story, and I’m so lucky BYU and KBYU gave me the opportunity to be a part of the team to tell this story.”
The piece tells the story of the Croatian basketball player and his life off the court. Specifically, it highlights his contributions to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints through stories told by Cosic’s family members, President Thomas S. Monson, U.S. Senator Orrin Hatch, Church scholars Ann and Truman Madsen and Utah Jazz player Gordan Giricek.
Having been baptized a member of the Church while attending BYU, Cosic returned to Croatia and spread the gospel as the first member of the Church in Communist Croatia.
The film’s producer, Lindsey Blumell Jurdana, worked on the film while attending BYU. The documentary also earned Jurdana a Gracie® for Outstanding Portrait/Biography and Outstanding Documentary-Midlength Format.
Jurdana’s interest in Cosic began when she served an LDS mission in Croatia. “I feel that the life of Cosic is a great thing to learn about,” Jurdana said, “even if my ability to tell the story could never give him the justice he deserves.”
An award for Outstanding Documentary went to BYU alum Kimber Holt Crandall for her piece “Mwana Wako Ni Mwana Wagnga — Your Child is My Child,” a film on how HIV/AIDS is affecting the children of Zambia. With more than 650,000 children in Zambia orphaned due to HIV/AIDS, it is estimated that 1 in 4 are left without parents. Crandall and co-producer Josh Greenbaum set out to Zambia to capture the stories of those trying to make a difference in the lives of these children.
The awards ceremony took place at Tavern on the Green in New York City’s Central Park where 44 statues were awarded. Nancy Giles of CBS News Sunday Morning hosted the event.
The AWRT has been recognizing programming created for and about women for over 30 years. The awards are given to encourage realistic portrayal of women in entertainment, commercials, news, features and other programming.
Writer: Emily Bennion