Best of Santa Barbara® 2017: Media

Paul Wellman

S.B. Columnist

Starshine Roshell

Santa Barbara Independent,

Starshine, you’re a star. Our very own Starshine Roshell once again has won over our readers’ adoration with her always funny, wisely witty, and occasionally raunchy musings on parenting, politics, and womanhood — and she couldn’t be more grateful. “It’s an astounding relief! In the majority of life’s corners, my unflinching straight talk is not at all appreciated (e.g., my children’s friends are frightened of me),” she said. We, meanwhile, certainly appreciate your viewpoints, Starshine; in the battle of pens and swords, you continue to out-strike them all.

Finalist: Nick Welsh (Angry Poodle Barbecue), Santa Barbara Independent

S.B. Radio Station

KjEE 92.9 FM

Well, of course KjEE’s Stephen Meade took the Best Radio Station announcement with a few wry words: “It’s affirmation that what we do matters to people with the patience to make it to the last page of your damn ballot.” Beacon to the patient or no, alternative-rock station KjEE more likely won as a bastion of all things rocking, edgy, and dang cool, an energy injection into S.B.’s placid airwaves. In years to come, Meade said, they’ll still be perched “above the Goodwill if the river don’t rise.” Even if it does, if there’s any uplifting radio station Santa Barbarans will listen to on their festive lifeboats and handheld radios afloat in those higher waters, it’ll be KjEE.

Finalist: KTYD 99.9 FM

S.B.-Based Website

Okay, Noozhawk: This town is big enough for the both of us. Like its namesake bird of prey, Noozhawk delivers news with fierce focus and swift speed, providing rapid-fire coverage of breaking stories. Its victory is all the more impressive in a day when journalism continues to grapple with new media. “Being a pioneer is not for the faint of heart, but it’s an exciting journey,” founder and publisher William M. Macfadyen said, adding that their web-based format allows them to engage directly with readers. “We view this as validation of how indispensable Noozhawk has become to our community.”


S.B. Twitter Follow

John Palminteri


We love him on KEYT, and now we love him on Twitter, too. In these fast-paced times, our readers prefer to follow none other than John Palminteri, the correspondent who’s “On it!” as soon as a story breaks. Whether midday or midnight, the Palm is sending out quick missives with reliability and charm aplenty. “I think about it around the clock. Even in my sleep, whenever that is,” said the unstoppable journalist of his social-media embrace. “There’s a buffet of news, and I’m ready to serve it up.”

Finalist:, @Edhat

2017 SBIFF American Riviera Award honoring Jeff Bridges presented by actor Gil Birmingham
Paul Wellman

Local Celebrity

Jeff Bridges

Big-hearted, laid-back, and kind — that’s Jeff Bridges to S.B. “Thanks, Independent readers! It feels wonderful, being recognized by a community and town that I love so much,” he said. We feel the love. In his work with Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, the magnanimous actor/musician has helped ensure meals to thousands of county children and families, and in his collaboration with Girls Rock S.B. and his own band The Abiders, he’s also proved to be an integral part of our music community. With his upcoming flick Only the Brave, he “celebrates” folks like our own wildfire fighters — “They are big heroes in my eyes.” As Bridges himself shows, heroism comes in all kinds of ways.

Finalist: John Palminteri


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