Grand Jury Confidential: Liliana Manna

NYF’s weekly Grand Jury Confidential features profiles of New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards award-winning Grand Jury members. Each interview provides a sneak peek into the brilliant careers of prominent radio executives from around the globe who are recruited from all facets of the radio industry to select the World’s Best Radio Programs℠. This week, NYF takes a few moments to connect with 2016 Grand Jury member, Liliana Manna, Journalist, Radio Rivadavia Argentina.

Liliana Manna, Journalist, Radio Rivadavia Argentina

Liliana, was the first woman in Argentina radio to be named a writer-broadcaster in the News Service of Radio Belgrano and served as producer on various radio and television programs. Her career spans more than 4 decades. She has been honored as one of the 100 personalities of the decade from 1987 to 1997 in the category Best Producer; and has earned numerous prestigious international awards for her compelling programs.

In the interview below Liliana shares her insights on the radio industry, her early leadership lessons, the hallmarks of an award-winning program and much more!

New York Festivals: Who or what were your early influences in your career?

Liliana Manna: Since childhood I was curious to know what was going on outside the walls of my home and my hometown. We always heard the radio in my family. My parents and brothers imagined the faces of voices we heard through the radio. Television arrived in the 60s (Black & White) and there I began to discover the world through images that were broadcast news from the city of Buenos Aires, capital of Argentina.  At that time there were only 4 TV channels and I discovered one of my first influences in the broadcast

Paloma Efrom (Blackie)

profession: Paloma Efrom (Blackie). She taught me that when reporting….  that the star is the interviewee, not the interviewer. She was highly respected public woman. Another important reference for my career, were broadcasters ,Andrés Percivale (Special Envoy to the front of the Vietnam War) and Monica Mihanovich (Special Envoy to the launch of Apollo 11 and the first man on the moon). In radio, my influences were many: Juan Alberto Badia, Jorge “Cacho” Fontana, Antonio Carrizo, and many more.

New York Festivals: What’s the most important thing you learned from your first job?

Liliana Manna: I learned to write well and speak well, to tell the story and to develop the story according to the style radio or television. I learned to read each story with the emphasis warranted  for the  context of the story and I learned to work together with a team. And above all, I learned to check the accuracy of the information

New York Festivals: What were some early leadership lessons for you?

Liliana Manna: As I said earlier,  I always was curious about what was happening in my country and around the world. I have a special attraction to meeting new people: to learn what makes us different. In my search in my journalistic profession I chose to learn about  journalistic ethics. And I learned my lesson. And my second great adventure was learning to work with a great team of professionals. In the 42 years I’ve been in the profession, I had the opportunity to offer  leadership and in the ’90s  I was appointed Manager News Radio World and was involved in general content production of various radio programs.

New York Festivals: What qualities are the most important to have?

Liliana Manna: I think the most important qualities are:

  • Be informed 24 hours a day.
  • Sharpen the criteria for communicating information.
  • Preserving sources off the record.
  • Check reliable sources of information.
  • Knowing how to communicate with direct language.
  • Thoroughly  know reporting techiniques when when interviewing someone.
  • Use genuine and ethical resources to achieve the best result.
  • And, above all things, be creative when it comes to the airing (radio or TV).

New York Festivals: Tell us a bit about your evolution in the radio industry?

Liliana Manna: I am a journalist who graduated in 1972 from Grafotécnico Institute, Graduate School of Journalism in Buenos Aires and a national broadcaster.  In 1974,  I graduated from the Higher Institute of Radio Education (ISER) and was the first woman in Argentina to be incorporated as a radio writer-broadcaster in the News Service of Radio Belgrano. I worked as a news producer in both radio and television.

In my 40 year  career, I have worked with professionals like Luis Garibotti, Enrique Llamas de Madariaga, Nelson Castro (14 years) Susana Gimenez, Moria Casan, Alejandro and Adrian Korol, Mex Urtizberea, Federica Pais, Alfredo Zaiat, Osvaldo Quiroga, Fernando Carnotta , Any Ventura.

I am currently working at  Documentary Studio Rosario Lufrano radio in Radio Rivadavia, and was the Journalistic Producer of “La Argentina de Tato” produced by Alejandro and Sebastian Borensztein, the children of Argentine actor.

I took Management News Radio El Mundo and  taught for 7 years in the ETER School for communicators.  Currently I  am Professor of Journalism in TV Production at the School of Integral Production of TV, Tea image. I have been invited to give lectures regarding the broadcast  profession by the Foreign Office in London to interview different personalities and participate in daily broadcasts from the BBC to Argentina.

I was honored with mutlitple national awards including Martin Fierro, the Broadcasting, and Ether prize. In 1997, I was  awarded the Diploma of Merit Konex as one of the 100 personalities of the decade from 1987 to 1997 in the category Best Producer. Internationally: Twelve times I was awarded Gold Medals, Bronze and Silver at the New York Festivals. The most recent award was in 2015 where, with Rosario Lufrano, we earned the Gold for Best Documentary: “Human Trafficking: Merchants of Innocence”.

Rosario Lurfrano and Liliana Manna

In 2014, along with Rosario Lufrano I was  awarded the Ondas Award, awarded by the Cadena Ser Spain, for best documentary radio program in the world “Human Trafficking: Merchants of Innocence” which on December 3rd was delivered in a special audience with Pope Francisco.

I was also awarded, along with journalist Nelson Castro, the “King of Spain” International Prize. And received the first distinction achieved by Argentine journalists radio special program broadcast by LS 10 Radio Del Plata on December 10, 1992: “10 Years of Democracy: a decade to remember.”

New York Festivals: What was a defining moment in your career?

Liliana Manna: The key moment of my career was in 1993 when I participated with the host Nelson Castro, to compete for the first time at the New York Festivals. We presented the Documentary: Malvinas: Ten years later. We won the Bronze medal and it was a unforgettable moment. It was our first international distinction and my first  in documentary radio. From there I realized that radio was my place. Since then … it’s been

New York Festivals: Will you share how the culture of your company encourages creativity?

Liliana Manna: Unfortunately in the Argentine radio industry is missing the documentary genre radial or special programs. Along with Rosario Lufrano, we create our own projects and Lufrano assumes the costs of my work. The radio station contributes the recording studio, an editor, and obviously the airing  the program within the schedule  of Lufrano Rosario. We are only a staff of 3 people, so the effort is huge.

New York Festivals: What are the hallmarks of award-winning radio programs?

Liliana Manna: Above all things: excellence. When I listen to the radio,  I want it to awaken my curiousity, my feelings,  my wishes,  and to continue listening because the  creative content captures me.

It is essential to create good ideas for radio. I always say that “you have to create the images in radio.” How is it done? With an excellent script; with a host who knows how to transmit; sounds; music ad hoc; and an excellent editor. This is creating special climates that engage the listener.

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