Private Award Sponsorships OK'd By P.C.C.
Special Editorial Section
OTTAWA — Press Club Canada has reversed a year-old policy
that prohibited the national federation of press clubs from
collaborating with private companies in sponsoring journalism awards or
At its annual meeting here, Press Club Canada
directors — who in nearly all cases are presidents of local
press clubs — voted to untie their executives' hands by
allowing them to entertain private enterprise proposals for
co-sponsorship of programs aimed at rewarding journalistic excellence.
There was no specific proposal before the board. A
year ago, when the decision was made to shut the door on private
sponsors, Canada News-Wire had proposed two new awards.
Press Club Canada now administers the Michener
Award, named to honor the late Wendy Michener, daughter of the former
Governor-General. The award now is in its eighth year.
The 1976 award, presented by Governor-General
Jules Leger at Rideau Hall recently, went to The Vancouver Sun
for reporter John Sawatsky's stories on the police break-in at a
left-wing Quebec news agency.
An honorable mention was awarded the London Free Press
for a series by Wendy Koenig on the problems of London's skid road.
This year's Press Club Canada meeting attracted
representatives of 14 local clubs. A notable absence was Winnipeg.
The Winnipeg club withdrew a year ago in protest
over the continuing membership in Press Club Canada of the Moncton
Men's Press Club, the only men-only club left in the country. PCC
President Bob Weber of London said he had tried unsuccessfully to
persuade the Winnipeg people to reconsider, explaining it was no part
of Press Club Canada's function to interfere in or dictate local club
To add insult to Winnipeg's perceived injury,
delegates this year elected Bill Anderson, past president of the
Moncton club, to replace Weber as PCC president.
The question of Press Club Canada's purpose came
in for close examination at this year's meeting. Its original function
was to provide a forum for exchange of information among press clubs on
organizational and financial matters. But delegates complained they
received little of use in return for their PCC dues — $1 per
member, to a maximum of $200.
Secretary-treasurer Bob Wyatt of Edmonton said the
problem sprang from the fact that member clubs paid little attention to
the national federation — or the problems of other clubs
— between annual meetings of Press Club Canada. He urged the
delegates to maintain closer liaison with the federation.
Published in Content's SOURCES December 1977
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