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Stephen Trumper on his path to journalism

Stephen Trumper (Photo by Nigel Dickson)

Stephen Trumper (Photo by Nigel Dickson)

On June 7 the National Magazine Awards Foundation was proud to honour Stephen Trumper with the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement. In his acceptance speech that evening Mr. Trumper touched on the challenges he faced as a person living with disability, including those related to breaking into journalism.

An excerpt of his address has been published as “Lost and Found: How a Small Group of War Vets Helped Me Find a Brighter Future” on the website of abilities.ca.

Memorably, he concluded:

[W]hat every person with a disability looking to build a career needs are allies to help shine a light on the uncertain path ahead, illuminating the way—as my war vets did—aiding me in my quest to, as Dr. Keith concluded, create a future that rested on working with my brain. That turned out to be editing and writing, a profession full of intricacies, settings and timing: elements that also happen to be the concerns of a good watchmaker.

Read the entire text of Mr. Trumper’s article.

Related post:
Stephen Trumper wins NMAF Outstanding Achievement Award

The 36th National Magazine Awards Gold Book

Make your summer reading the National Magazine Awards digital Gold Book. More than forty magazine stories and visual spreads representing the Gold winners from the 36th annual National Magazine Awards, available FREE for your computer or mobile device.

Including National Magazine Award-winning work by these Canadian literary and visual artists:

Caroline Adderson, Dave Cameron, Karen Connelly, Craig Davidson, Sierra Skye Gemma, Jessica Johnson, Tom Jokinen, Peter Ash Lee, Angus Rowe MacPherson, Greg McArthur, Leah McLaren, Conor Mihell, Jonathan Montpetit, Alison Motluk, Mark Peckmezian, Graeme Smith, Emma Teitel, Chris Turner, Jeff Warren, Sam Weber and more!

With stories from Canada’s best magazines, including Adbusters, Avenue, Azure, Canada’s History, Canadian Notes & Queries, Eighteen Bridges, Explore, Geist, Maclean’s, Maisonneuve, Reader’s Digest, Report on Business, Sportsnet, The Feathertale Review, The Grid, The New Quarterly, The Walrus, Toronto Life and more!

Congratulations to all of this year’s National Magazine Award winners, and happy summer reading to all!

Announcing the winners of the 36th National Magazine Awards!

Tonight the National Magazine Awards Foundation (NMAF) presented the winners of the 36th annual National Magazine Awards at a gala this evening in Toronto at The Carlu, presented by CDS Global, and hosted by Canadian actor Zaib Shaikh. Gold, Silver and Honourable Mention awards were presented in 47 categories, after the NMAF’s 250 volunteer judges evaluated 2000 submissions from nearly 200 Canadian consumer magazines.

[Version française]
[Complete list of winners PDF]
[36th NMA Gold Book]

Magazine of the Year

The coveted award for Magazine of the Year went to Corporate Knights. Honourable Mention for Magazine of the Year was awarded to Cottage Life, UPPERCASE and Urbania.

The award for Tablet Magazine of the Year went to Canadian House & Home for their “Colour Issue” from March 2012.

The award for Magazine Website of the Year went to Hazlitt, the online literary magazine published by Random House Canada.

Renowned Canadian editor, teacher and mentor Stephen Trumper was presented with the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement.

The winner of the award for Best New Magazine Writer was Sierra Skye Gemma, for her story “The Wrong Way” published in The New Quarterly.

Top Winning Magazines at the 36th National Magazine Awards:

Magazine

Gold

Silver

HM

L’actualité

6

0

18

The Grid

5

2

15

The Walrus

4

2

17

Hazlitt

3

0

1

Report on Business

2

5

13

Maisonneuve

2

3

9

Maclean’s

2

2

16

Corduroy

2

0

0

Toronto Life

1

4

24

Sportsnet

1

2

7

Eighteen Bridges

1

1

8

Canadian House & Home

1

1

5

Explore

1

1

4

Reader’s Digest

1

1

2

The Feathertale Review

1

1

0

Québec Science

0

2

1

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE AWARDS
The article “Building with the Brigadier” (Report on Business) by Greg McArthur and Graeme Smith—about the SNC-Lavalin investment in Libya—was the most celebrated individual article of the 36th National Magazine Awards, winning two Gold Awards, in Business and in Investigative Reporting, as well as Silver in Politics & Public Interest.

The Gold award for Best Single Issue went to The Feathertale Review (“Issue 9”), the Toronto-based independent arts magazine. The Silver went to Toronto Life (“The Loneliest Man in Toronto”).

The Gold award for the best Magazine Cover of the year went to Adbusters for their fast food satire “Are We Happy Yet?” by Will Brown and Pedro Inoue. “Issue 45” of Maisonneuve by Anna Minzhulina took the Silver award.

The new online literary magazine Hazlitt, in addition to winning Magazine Website of the Year, also took the Gold awards for Magazine Website Design and for best Online Video, the latter for the first installment of their interview series “Pagelicker 01: Irvine Welsh.”

Journalist Catherine Dubé of L’actualité won her eighth National Magazine Award with a Gold in Service: Health & Family, for “Faut-il interdire le cellulaire à l’école?” – one of six Gold awards won by L’actualité, the most of any magazine.

Journalists from L’actualité also won Gold in Politics & Public Interest (“Jason, le missionaire de Harper” by Alec Castonguay); in Service: Personal Finance & Business (“La guerre des retraites est commencée” by Annick Poitras); in Profiles (“L’étoffe d’un premier ministre?” by Noémi Mercier); in Photojournalism & Photo Essay (“Au coeur d’Attawapiskat” by Renaud Philippe); and in Spot Illustration (“Papa souffre, moi aussi” by Gérard Dubois).

The Grid led all publications with 7 total awards, including 5 Gold Awards: in Editorial Package: Web for their feature “Are You Going to Eat That?”; in Single Service Article Package for “The Grid Guide to Getting Hitched”; in How-To for “The Grid Guide to Buying a Condo”; in Creative Photography for “Truckin’ A!” by Angus Rowe MacPherson; and in Art Direction of a Single Magazine Article, for “Chef’s Guide to Toronto” by Vanessa Wyse.

Corduroy, an independent style and fashion magazine based in Toronto, won Gold for Art Direction of an Entire Issue (“Issue 10”) and in Fashion (“ten covers x ten models”), with art direction by Peter Ash Lee.

Writer Chris Turner led all individuals with four nominations and won Gold in Travel for “On Tipping in Cuba” in The Walrus. Mr. Turner has now won nine National Magazine Awards.

The Walrus won 6 total awards including 4 Gold: in addition to the Travel category, also winning Gold in Illustration (“Apocalypse Soon” by Sam Weber); in One-of-a-Kind (“What Would Tommy Douglas Think?” by Tom Jokinen); and in Society (“Fade to Light” by Dave Cameron).

In Words & Pictures the Gold award went to “On Thin Ice” in Canada’s History, by Terry Mosher (a.k.a. Aislin), Mark Reid and Michel Groleau.

Writer Alison Motluk won Gold in Health & Medicine for her story “Is Egg Donation Dangerous?” in Maisonneuve. For Ms. Motluk this is her third National Magazine Award. The Montreal quarterly’s other Gold award came in the category Best Short Feature, for “Notes from the End of the War” by Jonathan Montpetit.

In Fiction the Gold went to Alberta novelist Caroline Adderson for her short story “Ellen-Celine, Celine-Ellen” published in Canadian Notes & Queries. Former Governor General Literary Award winner Patrick deWitt won the Silver for “The Looking-Ahead Artist” in Brick.

In Poetry the Gold winner was former Governor General Literary Award winner Karen Connelly for her poem “The Speed of Rust, or, He Marries” in Geist. Sue Goyette won the Silver for her series of “Fashion” poems in Prairie Fire.

The story “Whale Rising” by Jeff Warren in Reader’s Digest was a double winner, taking Gold in Science, Technology & Environment and Silver in Essays.

Sportsnet took the Gold in Editorial Package: Print, for “Sports that can kill.” Québec Science won Silver for “50 défis pour 2050.”

Emma Teitel of Maclean’s won the Gold award in Columns. Ms. Teitel won Honourable Mention last year in the category Best New Magazine Writer.

Six of the ten finalists in the new category Blogs were from Maclean’s, with the blog “Science-ish” by Julia Belluz—a former winner of the National Magazine Award for Best Student Writer—winning Gold. Paul Wells won the Silver for “Inkless Wells.”

In Portrait Photography the Gold went to “Never Left Art School,” a series of portraits of artist Douglas Coupland by Mark Peckmezian for Montecristo.

The new French-language literary magazine Nouveau Projet won its first National Magazine Award for “Faux self mon amour” by Fanny Britt in the category Personal Journalism.

Eighteen Bridges gained ten nominations and won Gold in Humour for “The Hairs about our Secrets” by Jessica Johnson.

Toronto Life led all publications with 29 nominations, winning a Gold in Arts & Entertainment for “Something Borrowed” by Leah McLaren.

The new Globe & Mail magazine Globe Style Advisor won its first National Magazine Award, a Gold in the category Beauty for “Lady Obscura.”

Also winning Gold Awards:

Visit magazine-awards.com for the complete list of winners and to download the commemorative 36th National Magazine Awards Gold Book.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The National Magazine Awards Foundation acknowledges the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage, as well as financial support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario, and the Ontario Media Development Corporation. The National Magazine Awards Foundation gratefully acknowledges its suppliers and its contributors who donated gifts in kind to support the awards program. We thank them for their generosity, interest and expertise.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL MAGAZINE AWARDS FOUNDATION
The National Magazine Awards Foundation is a bilingual, not-for-profit institution whose mission is to recognize and promote excellence in the content and creation of Canadian print and digital publications through an annual program of awards and national publicity efforts. magazine-awards.com

Announcing the Nominees for the 36th National Magazine Awards!

Today the NMAF announces the nominees for the 36th annual National Magazine Awards!

[Version française]
[PDF Nominations List]
[Tickets]

In the category Magazine of the Year the jury has selected four finalists:

Corporate Knights
Cottage Life
Uppercase
Urbania

Nominated for Tablet Magazine of the Year are Canadian House & Home (“The Colour Issue”), Maclean’s (“Canada’s Best Restaurants”) and Chez Soi (“Noël 100% déco”).

And the nominees for Magazine Website of the Year are Hazlitt, Maclean’s and Toronto Life.

The winner of the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement, announced on April 30, is Stephen Trumper.

Leading all magazines with 29 nominations for this year’s National Magazine Awards is Toronto Life, followed by L’actualité (24), The Walrus (23), The Grid (22), Maclean’s and Report on Business (20 each).

Top Nominated Magazines for the 36th National Magazine Awards:

Magazine

Written

Integrated

Visual

Special

Total

Toronto Life

19

4

4

2

29

L’actualité

20

0

4

0

24

The Walrus

15

3

5

0

23

The Grid

8

7

7

0

22

Maclean’s

17

1

0

2

20

Report on Business

13

3

4

0

20

Maisonneuve

10

2

1

1

14

Cottage Life

4

3

2

1

10

Eighteen Bridges

10

0

0

0

10

Sportsnet

9

0

1

0

10

enRoute

3

2

4

0

9

The New Quarterly

7

0

0

1

8

Magazine of the Year Finalist

Magazine of the Year Finalist

Nine magazines are nominated for National Magazine Awards for the first time:
Chez Soi
Globe Style Advisor
(3 nominations)
Hazlitt
(4 nominations)
Infopresse
Le Must
New Trail
Nouveau Projet
(2 nominations)
Ottawa Citizen Style

Write Magazine

Chris Turner leads all individual finalists with 4 nominations in written categories for his work in Canadian Geographic, Marketing and The Walrus. Garnering 3 individual nominations are Catherine Dubé (L’actualité), Dan Robson (Sportsnet), Iain Marlow (Report on Business) and Dominique Forget (ELLE Québec, Jobboom and L’actualité).

Magazine of the Year Finalist

Magazine of the Year Finalist

The article “Building with the Brigadier” (Report on Business) by Greg McArthur and Graeme Smith has the distinction of being nominated in 3 categories: Business, Investigative Reporting and Politics & Public Interest.

The 10 finalists for the best Canadian Magazine Cover of 2012 come from Adbusters, Azure, Canadian Business, Maclean’s, Maisonneuve, Report on Business, The Grid, The Walrus, Up Here and Vancouver.

There are 8 finalists for the award for Best Single Issue: Cottage Life (“June 2012”), enRoute (“The Food Issue”), LE Must (“Santé alimentaire”), Maisonneuve (“Tenth Anniversary Issue”), The Feathertale Review (“Issue 9”), The Grid (“May 10”), The Walrus (“November 2012”) and Toronto Life (“The Loneliest Man in Toronto”).

The 3 finalists for Best New Magazine Writer are Chris Hampton (for “The Place Where Art Sleeps”; Maisonneuve), Sierra Skye Gemma (for “The Wrong Way”; The New Quarterly), and May Jeong (“The Cult of Pastor Song”; Toronto Life).

Magazine of the Year Finalist

Magazine of the Year Finalist

In addition to the new category Tablet Magazine of the Year, for 2012 the NMAF created 2 other new categories for digital content. In the new integrated category Online Video, the 5 finalists are “Balcony Makeover” (Canadian House & Home), “Les coulisses du reportage mode Icône” (ELLE Québec), “Pagelicker 01: Irvine Welsh” (Hazlitt), “Reboot on Life” (Ottawa Citizen Style), and “Toronto’s National Anthem” (The Grid).

Of the 10 finalists in the new written category Blogs, 6 are from Maclean’s, 2 from Torontoist, and 1 each from L’actualité and Today’s Parent.

Congratulations to all the finalists!
[PDF Nominations List]

Magazine of the Year Finalist

Magazine of the Year Finalist

The 36th annual National Magazine Awards Gala
Join us for the 36th annual National Magazine Awards, Friday June 7 at the fabulous Carlu in Toronto. [Tickets]

Gold and Silver awards will be handed down on June 7 in 24 written categories, 12 visual categories and 6 integrated categories. All other finalists will receive Honourable Mention. Winners will also be celebrated in 5 special categories: Outstanding Achievement, Best New Magazine Writer, Magazine Website of the Year, Tablet Magazine of the Year, and Magazine of the Year.

Gold winners in written, visual and integrated categories (except Best Single Issue) receive a cash prize of $1000; Silver winners $500. The winner of Best New Magazine Writer receives a cash prize of $500.

Credit Changes
If you are a National Magazine Award nominee, please let us know of any credit changes to your nomination no later than Thursday May 9, 2013.

Thank you!
A grand thank you to all of our judges who evaluated this year’s entries to the National Magazine Awards. From nearly 2,000 individual entries nationwide, the NMAF’s 251 volunteer judges nominated a total of 365 submissions from 87 different Canadian magazines for awards in 47 written, visual, integrated and special categories.

Acknowledgements
The National Magazine Awards Foundation acknowledges the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage, as well as financial support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario, and the Ontario Media Development Corporation. The National Magazine Awards Foundation gratefully acknowledges its suppliers and its contributors who donated gifts in kind to support the awards program. We thank them for their generosity, interest and expertise.

NMA_SM_May1

Stephen Trumper wins NMAF Outstanding Achievement Award

Stephen Trumper (Photo by Nigel Dickson)

Stephen Trumper (Photo by Nigel Dickson)

The National Magazine Awards Foundation is pleased to announce that the winner of this year’s Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement is Stephen Trumper.

As a distinguished editor, a beloved teacher, a renowned master of display copy and a mentor known for giving generously of his time and expertise, Stephen Trumper has been a pillar of the Canadian magazine industry for more than thirty-five years.

In 1977 Steve joined Toronto Life, where he enjoyed a fourteen-year tenure, including nine as managing editor, during which time the publication was twice named Magazine of the Year. As a handling editor at Toronto Life and, later, at Harrowsmith Country Life and National Post Business plus freelance assignments for, among others, Saturday Night, Chatelaine, Elm Street and This Magazine, Steve’s deft touch and rapport with his writers helped produce more than sixty awards and nominations from the National Magazine Awards and other regional and industry associations.

In the mid-nineties he became a part-time instructor at Ryerson University’s School of Journalism, where he has taught magazine editing and feature writing ever since while also guiding students through the production of several issues of the Ryerson Review of Journalism. As a teacher and mentor, Steve has been an inspiration to a generation of Canada’s brightest journalists, many of whom still seek him out for counsel and friendship at his favourite tables at The Senator or at the Starbucks inside Sears at the Eaton Centre. Shameless magazine was born in one of Stephen’s classes at Ryerson.

A wheelchair user who was on the boards of CBC-TV’s Disability Network, Ontario Science Centre, Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital and a member of the Ontario Lieutenant Governor’s ad hoc committee on improving job opportunities for people with disabilities, Steve currently serves on the board of the Canadian Abilities Foundation, which publishes Abilities magazine. In addition, for the past dozen years Steve has been involved with Accessible Media Inc. (AMI), a not-for-profit organization that operates two broadcast services (AMI-tv and AMI-audio) and a website (AMI.ca). By making print, broadcast and digital media accessible, AMI serves more than five million Canadians who are blind or partially sighted, deaf or hard of hearing, mobility or learning disabled, or learning English as a second language. For AMI Steve has been a writer, an editor and, for several years, the organization’s Ombudsman.

Steve’s principal goals in his career as an editor, a teacher and an advocate for people with disabilities: to make media and journalism better, and to make them accessible to all Canadians. In 2012, Steve received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, recognizing his contributions to community and public service.

On behalf of the National Magazine Awards Foundation: Congratulations Stephen!

Stephen Trumper will be recognized at the 36th annual National Magazine Awards gala on June 7. Tickets go on sale May 1, when the NMAF will announce all nominees for this year’s National Magazine Awards.

What the Canadian magazine industry told us about Stephen Trumper

Steve’s modus operandi: gradually bringing along a new writer, helping them fine-tune their natural skills and overcome any weaknesses, and challenging them by assigning them stories that are outside of their comfort zone. That Steve is arguably the most influential mentor working in the business today is only one of the reasons he is deserving of the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement.
David Hayes, fourteen-time NMA finalist and Gold winner in 2002, and member of the Board of Directors of the National Magazine Awards Foundation. 

Guiding students in putting together the Ryerson Review of Journalism involves multiple professional skills and also considerable finesse, tact, diplomacy and cat-herding prowess, plus the ability to teach effectively on the fly. Steve manages this challenging role with ease and emerges with a magazine to be proud of, as well as many warm relationships with the students involved.
Lynn Cunningham, associate professor of journalism at Ryerson and a former recipient of the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement (1998).

“Steve is the voice of AMI in all of his interactions with our audience, and takes the time to chat with each person individually either on the phone or through a carefully crafted email response. He also provides frank and sage advice on the many sensitive issues and topics we deal with.”
Peter Burke, Vice-president, Marketing & Communications, Accessible Media Inc.

Shameless has flourished thanks to Steve’s guidance and unwavering support. His faith in our scrappy indie magazine, which he treated with as much respect as a big-budget glossy, is a testament to his kindness and commitment to fostering future generations of Canadian magazine contributors.”
Melinda Mattos and Nicole Cohen, co-founders of Shameless magazine

At National Post Business (now known as Financial Post Magazine), Steve was the quintessential unsung story wrangler and writer whisperer. He would gather up lumps of mismatched clay, deposited on his desk by the alleged sculptor, and turn them into a Rodin. And he did it with ease, with grace and with unbreakable good cheer.
Tony Keller, Co-host of “The Street” on BNN

For more than a decade now, I’ve met with Steve regularly for discussion and career advice over brunch at his table at The Senator. Our ongoing conversation covers the industry as a whole, job opportunities, and mini career crises, along with family and life in general. I always leave those meetings feeling more optimistic than I did going in.
Allan Britnell, Managing Editor, Renovation Contractor, and President, Canadian Society of Magazine Editors

You only have to witness Steve in action briefly to see the strength of his intellect, humour and commitment to storytelling. This was someone I wanted to learn from, and, lucky for me, he obliged.
Jessica Johnston, National Post travel editor and former editor of This Magazine.

He doesn’t let you get away with lazy writing: a fix note from Steve will have you flipping your desk, because you know he’s right. He pushes you to be the best journalist you can be, happily slashing your precious words in the service of fabulous storytelling. He has an uncanny ability to see the story behind the story, the one that’s hard to dig up.
--Dana Lacey, Director of Digital Journalism at ScribbleLive

His enthusiasm for long-form journalism is infectious. The year I edited the RRJ, Steve was relentless in his pursuit of excellence and pushed us to be our best. When one writer was having some difficulty, he took on the editing of the piece and it ended up garnering a National Magazine Award nod that year. He’s not only a talented line editor, he has the vision of a great substantive editor.
Julia Belluz, Senior Editor, The Medical Post

At The Senator or Starbucks with a soon-to-be grad or former student, Steve never coddles, but always challenges. Sometimes he will just listen, other times he will interject with just the right question or anecdote or connection. In an industry that is often rushed an in which people have little time for newbies, Steve stands out as a rarity.
Lauren McKeon, Editor, This Magazine

He always seems to be there when you need him, whether it’s fixing a manuscript that has gone awry, or writing display copy, or advising a new writer at his craft or a veteran writer who’s fallen into a funk. He has a great ability to take a complicated mess and tease meaning from it, to make a story out of scattered jottings.
Marq de Villiers, author and former editor at Toronto Life

Steve is an editor with infinite patience, but not one who indulges ego. He doesn’t only teach others how to edit, but how to lead. More importantly, he believes in young talent, taking the time to praise when it’s deserved and push when it’s needed.
--Maryam Siddiqi, freelance writer and editor

It sounds like a simple thing, but good counsel is something most of us need. Steve has kept many of us sane and out of law school. He’s listened to us whine and moan and cry, and then, magically, helped make sense of it all.
Megan Griffth-Greene, Associate Producer, CBC Television

It would not be a stretch to say that Stephen Trumper is one of the reasons there are still magazine feature writers and editors roaming the Canadian lands, typing furiously or tracking their changes.
--Mikala Taylor, Content Strategist, Think! Social Media

About the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement
The NMAF’s most prestigious individual prize since its inception in 1990 is the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement, an award that recognizes an individual’s innovation and creativity through contributions to the magazine industry. The award is open to circulation experts, editors, marketing, sales and promotion professionals, publishers, creators, designers, production managers – in short, to everyone in the industry. It cannot be given posthumously. Nominations for this award are welcome from everyone in the industry. Nominations are due each year by March 1.

About the National Magazine Awards
The nominees for the 36th annual National Magazine Awards will be announced on May 1. This year’s awards gala is on Friday, June 7, 2013, at The Carlu in Toronto. For ticket and other information visit magazine-awards.com.

About the Photograph
The official portrait of Stephen Trumper is by Nigel Dickson for the National Magazine Awards Foundation.

Ken Rodmell to be featured at upcoming Regional Design Awards

Designers and enthusiasts are getting ready to celebrate the best in design publishing at the 3rd annual Regional Design Awards Party–the Reggies–put on by Design Edge Canada, which takes place on Tuesday, June 26 at The Hoxton in Toronto.

Renowned art director Ken Rodmell, who received the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement from the National Magazine Awards in 2000, will be honoured at the Reggies for his career achievements in design.

This event honours the winners and finalists of the Regional Design Awards, and includes special presentations to the “Best of Region” winners. Guests will also receive an advance copy of the Design Edge Canada Awards annual. Tickets are $20 at the door.

Heather Robertson wins the 2011 NMA Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement

Heather Robertson. Photograph by Aaron Marshall.

That National Magazine Awards Foundation announced this afternoon that Heather Robertson has won the 2011 Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement. Ms. Robertson will be presented with her award at the 35th anniversary National Magazine Awards on June 7. [Version française ici]

Founded in 1990, this award recognizes an individual’s innovation and creativity through contributions to the Canadian magazine industry. Nominations are accepted from across the country and voted on by the board of the NMAF.

Over the course of a 40-year career in journalism, Heather Robertson has been a prolific and award-winning writer, news reporter, and television and radio producer. Her work in magazines has included regular contributions to Saturday Night, Equinox, Elm Street, Toronto Life, Chatelaine, Canadian Forum, Canada’s History, Weekend, The Canadian, and Maclean’s.

As class representative in Robertson v. Thomson, which reached the Supreme Court in 2006, Robertson brought suit on behalf of a group of fellow freelance writers whose work was being reproduced on certain electronic databases without permission or reimbursement. Robertson’s work and leadership secured a large settlement in one of the most important copyright cases in recent Canadian history, with $11-million awarded to the writers involved. Robertson has since led the charge in a similar suit, Robertson v. ProQuest et al., resolved in 2011 with another multimillion-dollar settlement benefiting Canadian freelance writers. [Read the full bio of Heather Robertson]

Here’s what the Canadian magazine industry is saying about Heather Robertson:

Heather Robertson’s bravery in tackling the profound changes taking place in our industry is about personal triumph and the rights of creators in a new media landscape. Regardless of where you sit in the debate her court case engendered, we all agree that the rules were going to change. It took a lot of guts to lead the charge. For that Heather is a worthy winner of this year’s Outstanding Achievement Award.” ~ Arjun Basu, President, NMAF

“[Through] her staunch belief in the need for creators to maintain control over their works, Heather has been instrumental in clarifying Canada’s copyright law, in pushing publishers to exercise care in their handling of freelance content, and in ensuring that those whose rights are violated are compensated.” ~ Kim Pittaway, freelance journalist and former President of the NMAF

“When I started my career as a magazine writer in the early ’80s, I was inspired by Heather’s feature writing in Saturday Night, Toronto Life and other markets. The success [of her copyright lawsuits] was a game-changer, making everyone more conscious of those who work so hard to provide the content that makes readers love magazines.” ~ David Hayes, freelance journalist and NMAF board member

“Even a cursory search will reveal Ms. Robertson as among the most prolific and dedicated writers in Canada and her service to the community is certainly unique.” ~ Tanya Gulliver, Past-President of Professional Writers Association of Canada

“Heather is more than just a champion for writer’s rights; she is a symbol of what is possible when writers stand up for themselves.” ~ Michael O’Reilly, President of Canadian Freelance Union

“Heather Robertson has provided an important service for writers in forcing publishers to recognize that their articles have value, both for first publication in print or online and for subsequent repackaging or republishing.” ~ Sandford Borins, Professor of Management at University of Toronto

“Robertson’s courage and tenacity may provide an example in the long term for all freelancers to stick up for their rights and demand reasonable treatment and fair compensation.” ~ D.B. Scott, President of Impresa Communications, Ltd, author of Canadian Magazines blog, and the 2010 recipient of the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement

“We celebrate Heather Robertson for her courage and persistence in standing up for our rights and principles, quietly, unshakably, for so many years, when new technologies seemed about to sweep our rights away” ~ Alan Cumyn, Past-Chair, Writers Union of Canada

“Many journalists now associate Robertson with those landmark lawsuits. They celebrate her for standing up for her peers, keeping everyone updated on the case and, of course, for the ‘Heather Robertson cheques’.” ~ Regan Reid, author of “Firebrand,” Ryerson Review of Journalism

If you’d like to add a quote or testimonial about Heather Robertson, deposit a comment below.

The nominees for the 35th anniversary National Magazine Awards will be announced tomorrow – May 1. Keep it right here on our Magazine Awards blog to find out who is nominated this year, or sign up for our newsletter.

The Canadian magazine industry will gather to honour Heather Robertson and all the winners at the 35th anniversary National Magazine Awards gala on June 7, 2012 at The Carlu in Toronto. Tickets go on sale May 1.

Ryerson Review of Journalism launches Summer 2012 issue

The Ryerson Review of Journalism launched its Summer 2012 issue at the Gladstone Hotel in Toronto last week among well-known faces of the Canadian magazine industry (including many National Magazine Award winners). The National Magazine Awards Foundation is always eager to welcome new talent in the industry, and its staff and interns were also present to celebrate the launch.

First created in 1985 as a “watchdog for the watchdogs,” the RRJ is produced by Ryerson journalism students in their final year. The current faculty and instructors working with the students hold a total of 25 NMAs. The instructor for this issue, Lynn Cunningham, won the Foundation Award Outstanding Achievement in 1998.

As can be expected, learning from such outstanding professionals has led the students to create a magazine that lives up to its mandate and produces award-winning features: the RRJ currently holds a total of 23 National Magazine Award nominations including 2 Golds for Best Student Writer and 3 Silvers in the Profiles, Politics & Public Interest, and Portrait Photography categories. We wish the magazine and its young masthead the best of luck in the future.

Ryerson students and NMAF interns Wajiha Suboor and Rebecca Zanussi show off the Summer 2012 RRJ issue with NMAF Special Projects Manager Richard A Johnson

Last Call for Nominations for Outstanding Achievement Award

Nominations for the Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement – the most prestigious individual honour granted by the National Magazine Awards Foundation — are due by March 1, 2012.

This award is open to circulation experts, editors, marketing, sales and promotion professionals, publishers, designers, production managers — in short, to everyone in the Canadian magazine industry. It cannot be given posthumously.

The nomination consists of a letter from the nominator indicating the candidate’s name, title and career achievements, with supporting letters from at least two other individuals. There is no fee.

The Judging Committee of the NMAF will consider the nominations, along with nominations from members of the Committee itself. The Board of the NMAF will select the winner. Nominees not selected for the award may be kept under consideration an additional two years.

The winner will be announced on May 1 with the release of the finalists for this year’s 35th anniversary National Magazine Awards, and he or she will be presented with the award at the NMA gala on June 7 in Toronto.

Send nominations to the NMAF office no later than March 1.

Call for Outstanding Achievement nominees

While the submissions process for the 2011 National Magazine Awards is still a few weeks away (Dec 1), it is never too early to submit candidates for the special Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement.

The NMAF’s most prestigious individual prize since its inception in 1990, this award is open to circulation experts, editors, marketing, sales and promotion professionals, publishers, designers, production managers — in short, to everyone in the Canadian magazine industry. It cannot be given posthumously.

The nomination consists of a letter from the nominator indicating the candidate’s name, title and career achievements, with supporting letters from at least two other individuals. The deadline for nominations is March 1, 2012. There is no fee.

The Judging Committee of the NMAF will consider the nominations, along with nominations from members of the Committee itself. The Board of the NMAF will select the winner. Nominees not selected for the award may be kept under consideration an additional two years.

Send nominations to the NMAF office. Previous winners include D.B. Scott, Terry Sellwood, Sally Armstrong, John Macfarlane, Lynn Cunningham, Robert Fulford, Jean Paré, Michael de Pencier, and more.

Charles Oberdorf remembered

On a day when his friends and loved ones will gather at Glebe Road United Church in Toronto to honour the life of the late Charles Oberdorf, we take a moment to recollect how the Canadian magazine industry knew him back in June, 2008, when Charles was presented with the NMAF’s Foundation Award for Outstanding Achievement.

Charles, who passed away on September 16, served for nine years on the board of directors of the NMAF and was board president in 1993-1994. He was also twice a National Magazine Award winner for his writing, and was known to many in the industry as an editor, columnist, consultant, volunteer, teacher, mentor and friend.

As an editor and a writer, he always hewed to the best traditions in magazine journalism, enriching the lives of Canadian readers and setting an example for Canadian journalists.
–John Macfarlane

As a teacher, writer, volunteer, mentor, manager and friend, he touched more people in the Canadian [magazine] industry than seems possible for one guy.
–D.B. Scott

Charles has always been a fighter, for what I believe are all the right reasons – justice, equality, quality.
–Jessica Ross

Everyone has two or three truly effective teachers: Charles is one of mine.
–Martin Zibauer

[Charles] has performed his duties as an educator with his usual good humour, considerable charm, kind mentorship and impressive vocabulary.
–Margaret Webb

I don’t know how to express this other than to say he simply “got it” when so many others didn’t.
–Catherine Osbourne

When I think about Charles, the first thing that pops to mind is his distinctive, rolling laughter – the delight of a man connecting his fine mind with ideas and other people.
–Penny Williams

[E]verywhere he has worked, he has been a civilizing, sophisticated influence in the office and on the page.
–James Chatto

I found Toronto Life’s Epicure column so clever, so wonderfully literary. I marveled that someone could do this. I soon learned it was a fellow named Oberdorf.
–David Hayes

I’ve seen him take a room of desultory people and have them all wanting to be editors by the time he sits down.
–Gwen Dunant

Charles is a sophisticated writer; a thoughtful editor; a specialist in a magazine staple – the fine-living subjects of travel, design, food and wine; a man with a keen intellect and curiosity who has a knack for finding stories that engage; a magazine-lover.
–Stephen Trumper

Colleagues have been depositing more of their fondest memories of Charles over at the Canadian Magazines blog.

[Photo credit: Eugene Beck]

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