The American Red Cross San Diego/Imperial Counties Chapter has chosen Michael Chen, reporter at KGTV 10 News, for its Real Hero Media Award.
Chen will receive the award at the organization’s 11th Annual Real Heroes Breakfast September 27, 2013.
The Real Heroes event highlights the Red Cross mission by celebrating individuals and organizations across ten categories including military members, first responders and youth from San Diego and Imperial Counties.
The Media Award is given to a reporter, anchor, news station, or publication that went above and beyond to encourage safety and preparedness.
Chen has done a series of stories on a local homeless advocate named David Ross. Ross uses his own social security check money to pass out water and food to the homeless in San Diego. Ross has also spent many years working to get the homeless bathroom facilities, all of which Chen has followed with his reports.
“As journalists, our life’s work is to find compelling stories that need to be told. And it was during my first meeting with David that I knew his story would be one of the most remarkable I would ever cover,” said Chen. “Here’s this older man, a former car salesman, who is using his Social Security check to help the homeless. He’s passing water during the day, visiting overpasses at night. He’s been beaten up, stabbed, ticketed, yelled at – and he wakes up every morning and begins again.”
Chen has also spotlighted other San Diegans that have been in crisis and continues to tell their story with follow up reports.
He also emcees numerous local civic and Asian cultural events, giving his time and support.
“This is really special because it is recognition that – in this fast-paced era of journalism, there is value is building relationships and looking at an issue over time,” said Chen.