J. Wes Unruh
Writer/Artist/Producer
Professional Career
I have been working as the digital media strategist for the Peabody Awards since 2014. In that time I have helped digitize and release all available past ceremonies, I've overseen the creation of different video productions, I've helped deploy a podcast series, and I've assisted with the administration of the adjudication process. Prior to my time with Peabody, I worked as research director for Beacon Initiative LLC., a non-profit organization, which I helped develop. Our work was dedicated to synthesizing research on hate speech and bullying, to help develop educational materials for understanding, identifying, and demobilizing the spread of hatred, bias, and racism. Here is a short list of some of my published work.
My Name
My friends and family know me as Wes, and I've published writing as Wes Unruh. It is also the name I work under. But Wes is not my first name, and Unruh is not my real name. I'm an adoptee, and my real name was kept from me for years by the state of Idaho, sealed away. I've made it my life's work to figure out what my mother's name was, what my father's name was, and what my name was... my name, before it was Unruh, was Harper.
Fatherhood
My professional life takes a great deal of my time, but I prioritize taking time with my wife and son. Here's one of my favorite photos, of my son perched on my shoulders as we watched the winter parade in Athens, Georgia.

Every year we try to keep up our traditions. 2020 has been different, to be sure, but he and I still make time to do things together around town.