By Ellen Garnett
*CW: Boston Marathon
When the bombs exploded during the Boston Marathon in 2013, she was at the finish line. A Simmons graduate of 2010 and a reporter for the Boston Herald at the time, Erica Moura did not run from the scene, but wielded her power as a journalist to inform the public, to defuse fear. Now she is back at Simmons as a lecturer in the Department of Communications.
After the unexpected passing of Professor and Radio Adviser Len Mailloux in November, the department recruited Moura to fill the position. She is not new to the scene of excellence in broadcast journalism. Moura is an award-winning, Emmy-nominated multimedia journalist who has also lectured at Curry College.
Upon leaving Simmons, she earned her master’s at Emerson College in broadcast journalism and launched her career as a video reporter for the Boston Herald. During her time at the Herald, she wore various hats, from recording live feed hits on their website during the James Whitey Bulger trial verdict in 2013 to helping establish Boston Herald Radio.
For Moura, returning to Simmons is bittersweet, as she was the first general manager of Simmons College Radio (The Shark) when it launched in 2008 under the leadership of Len and Professor James Corcoran.
“Len was the person who I could go to for literally anything,” said Moura. “He was a mentor both personally and professionally. I would talk to him about anything from my career to how my garden was doing.”
For Moura and countless others, Len was a life coach. It is Moura’s turn to continue Len’s legacy of making the radio station accessible to everyone, not just communication majors.
Since its inception, The Shark has worked to achieve this goal by providing a variety of shows. Moura, who was a political science major, was the host of a dual-language show that took a look at international news. It was a multicultural program broadcasted in both Portuguese and English.
The Shark has received awards in numerous categories by the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System (IBS) to recognize its efforts on this front. One such example is its award for Best Public Service Promotion for its “Ask a Simmons Nurse” segment in 2015. This educational public service series, which appeared on air and in The Simmons Voice, was a collaborative project by the Dept. of Communications and the School of Nursing and Health Sciences.
In 2016, The Shark received nine nominations in various categories by IBS, and winners will be announced at the awards ceremony in New York City on March 7. Categories include Best On Air Personality, Most Innovative Program, and Best College Radio Streaming Station (Under 10,000 Students) to name a few.
In her new role, Moura is getting to know the radio team better and looks forward to being its advocate, just as Len was for her.