Looking for a Leader: Who Do You Trust to Lead San Antonio?
When San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro resigned to join President Obama’s cabinet he ignited a free-for-all among 14 candidates who wanted to replace him. So- how to cover so many candidates and give voters a reason to pay attention? Through candidate forums and an examination of the campaigns it became pretty clear that four contenders had the knowledge and organization to compete.
In 2015 we broadcast over 40 stories about the mayoral race. We discussed the contest, candidates and issues frequently on our call-in show. We hosted and live-streamed a crucial runoff debate in the final days of the election that other media covered. We provided live, election-night coverage and online supplemental information.
The stories that set our coverage apart included our deep look at the quality of the people running- the core values they’d bring to the job; events that had shaped their lives; how they made decisions. We spent time with the candidates at their homes and in their neighborhoods.
The insight lead to public radio profiles which sought to answer that most important question-who would you trust to lead your city? Through a partnership with an online journalism project we provided candidate videos that accompanied our online profiles and were widely shared through social media.
It is difficult in this age of government cynicism and low voter turnout to successfully invest citizens in an election and its candidates. Texas Public Radio believes we helped do that with our consistent coverage and content that allowed voters to better understand the candidates who wanted to lead our city.
Texas Public Radio’s Continuing Coverage entry includes the following:
:00-21:08 Our four reports which explored the character and values of the four competitive candidates. They aired individually in newscasts and again in a 30-minute election preview. We’re including the election preview.
21:08-23:36 Excerpts from the feisty, June 1, TPR debate with runoff candidates, former state Sen. Leticia Van de Putte and interim Mayor Ivy Taylor. It was broadcast and streamed live. Other media covered it and reported on the candidates’ performances.
23:36- 25:31 Excerpts from our live, election night coverage in May where two candidates advanced to a runoff. We had reporters in the field with the candidates and had all of them on our air during the broadcast.
25:31-26:37 Ivy Taylor becomes San Antonio’s first, elected African-American mayor. A report following her election night victory.
Note: We are including links on our entry to individual stories you can examine. If you type the phrase “mayoral race” in our website search bar many of the other broadcast stories and online content will be listed as well.