News Release

Southeastern Channel wins Emmys for third year

Contact: Christina Chapple


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Steve Zaffuto and Rick Settoon

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SOUTHEASTERN CHANNEL WINS EMMYS -- The Southeastern Channel, Southeastern Louisiana University's educational cable access channel, won two regional Emmy Awards for commercial and for its "Tomorrow's Leaders" image campaign. The awards were presented by the Suncoast Region of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in Orlando. From left are channel Operations Manager Steve Zaffuto, who won the Emmys in the “Commercial” and “Director- Post-Production” categories, and General Manager Rick Settoon.  

     HAMMOND –The Southeastern Channel, Southeastern Louisiana University’s educational access channel, has won coveted Emmy Awards for the third straight year.

     The channel won two Emmys for a five-spot image campaign for Southeastern, “Tomorrow’s Leaders.” Produced by channel operations manager Steve Zaffuto of Madisonville, “Tomorrow’s Leaders” won in the “Commercial” and “Director- Post-Production” categories.

     “Despite being only five years old, the Southeastern Channel continues to stand tall among the premiere college television stations in the country,” said Southeastern President Randy Moffett. “Receiving four Emmys and 14 Emmy nominations in the past three years is a tribute to the talent and hard work of the channel’s staff and the superior quality of its production.”

     The Southeastern Channel is the only Louisiana university television station ever to win an Emmy. The regional Emmy is the highest honor that local and regional television stations can win since national competition is open only to major television channels and networks broadcasting to 75 percent of the national population.

     “This is a tremendous honor since the Emmy is the most prestigious award in television and video production,” said Rick Settoon, the channel’s general manager. “All judging criteria are held to the very high Emmy standard. There were plenty of categories in which no award was given because the standard is so high.”

     The winners were announced Dec. 1 in Orlando by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Competition included nominees from television stations and production companies in the Suncoast Region -- Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Puerto Rico.

     “The ‘Tomorrow’s Leaders’ spots do an exceptional job of representing the true quality of Southeastern and its students, faculty and academic programs,” said John Crain, Southeastern provost and vice-president for academic affairs.

     Working with the Southeastern administration, Settoon initiated the concept for the spots while Zaffuto shaped the approach and researched, wrote, produced, directed and edited each spot.

     “Steve did a tremendous job of producing these spots from start-to-finish by applying great vision and creativity along with his special artistic and technical abilities,” Settoon said.

     “Tomorrow’s Leaders” highlights faculty-student interaction on a variety of research projects at Southeastern.

     Research on the West Nile Virus featured biology major Alex Mattheus of Gonzales and biochemistry professor Jeffrey Temple while business research focused on the finance lab’s Bloomberg machine and included finance major Krista Marchinko of Ponchatoula and associate professor of marketing and finance John Cresson.

     Computer science major Matthew Magnuson of Baton Rouge and industrial technology professor Mike Asoodeh exhibited high-tech studies of robotics while elementary education major Alissa Davies of Lacombe and education professor Cynthia Elliott showed how music helps Hispanic children learn English at Amite’s Migrant Head Start center. Finally, exercise science major Craig Thomas of Jamaica and kinesiology faculty members Robert Kraemer and Gregory Reeves explained research that aids in muscle movement and training.

     Zaffuto said his goal was to create several micro-documentaries portraying the university’s academic environment. “From the beginning, I knew that in order for the commercials to be effective they had to be believable and genuine,” he said.

     Appropriately, the production process mirrored the content and message of the spots, since graduate assistant Jason Aycock of Springfield worked with Zafutto as videographer and undergraduate student Chris Guagliardo of Hammond also assisted. Channel videographer/editor Josh Kapusinski of Hammond and channel staff member Jamie Bass of Mandeville also assisted in the production.

     Zaffuto was also nominated for graphics and animation work on a “Native Sounds” promo. The Southeastern Channel’s nominees this year also included Kapusinski for both “Graphics and Animation” and the “Community Vision” promotional spot. Also, Roberts Batson was nominated as “Performer/Narrator” for his one-man show, “Amazing Place, This New Orleans,” filmed by the Southeastern Channel during Southeastern’s Fanfare 2007 arts celebration.

     Previously the Southeastern Channel won Emmys in the Program Promotion category for Kapusinski’s promo of “The Florida Parish Chronicles” and in the “Student Program” category for a documentary short about longtime Southeastern baseball coach John Stephenson. The channel has also won more than 40 national and international awards in the past four years.

     The Southeastern Channel can be seen on Charter Cable Channel 18 in Tangipahoa, St. Tammany, and Livingston parishes, on Channel 17 in Washington Parish, and online at

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