The three nominations announced June 8 by the Academy were the most Burbank has ever received during city spokesman Drew Sugars’ tenure with the city, Sugars said.
“Our goal is to educate, not to entertain, but you try to find ways to make it entertaining,” Sugars said. “What I like about these three nominations are that they’re kind of different.”
The first nomination the city received was for “Best Feature Segment” for then-mayor Jess Talamantes’ 2016 State of the City video, “Wave of the Future.” The video touched on how Burbank has changed in the past, such as Lockheed leaving the city in the 1990s, and potential changes in store, such as the Burbank Unified School District preparing students for the changing job economy.
Then-mayor Bob Frutos’ State of the City video, “Drawing Power of Burbank,” was also nominated and won in the category during last year’s Emmy Awards.
“Being nominated for our State of the City is a big deal,” Sugars said. “Each year we have a different mayor and we try to adapt to that particular mayor and help them deliver their message. They give us the content and we try to build off of that.”
The Burbank Channel also earned a nomination this year for “Best Informational Series” for its quarterly magazine-style show, “Burbank on Demand,” which earlier won a Golden Mike award from the Radio & Television News Assn. of Southern California. The series focuses on topics such as volunteer opportunities, city-run programs and other subjects residents might be interested in.
The final Emmy nomination Sugars and his team received was for “Best Information Segment” for a feature report regarding food-waste prevention created by Walter Lutz, senior video production associate for the Burbank Channel. It aired in last summer’s episode of “Burbank on Demand.”
This segment also received a Golden Mike award this year, winning for “Best Light Feature Reporting.”
“He took, what I think, is a topic that people just don’t think about and tried to make it entertaining and help them understand what a big deal it is,” Sugars said of Lutz’s feature.
Sugars said he is proud of the nominations and wins he and his team of about six people have earned over his five years with the city.
Though winning Emmys and other awards is a way of being validated for your work, Sugars said his team’s mission is to get the community more involved and not to add another statue to the shelf.
“I don’t want to lessen [the importance] of the awards,” he said. “They’re really nice to have, but if we can target messages to the public and if we can measure more sign-ups for programs or if more people know about a topic, that to me is the first thing I look at for success. If that happens, then these secondary awards are that much sweeter.”
The 69th Los Angeles Area Emmy Awards will be held on July 22 at the Television Academy’s Saban Media Center in North Hollywood.