FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Two Atlantic Canadians have won the 2005 Dalton Camp Award.
Kurt Peacock of Saint John, New Brunswick and Megan Wennberg of Halifax, Nova Scotia have won the annual Award for their original essays of the link between democratic values and the news media. Prizes are being presented today at the Banff World Television Festival.
The Dalton Camp Award was created by Friends of Canadian Broadcasting in December 2002 to honour the memory of the late Dalton Camp, a distinguished commentator on Canadian public affairs, who passed away earlier that year. Friends’ goal is to encourage young Canadians to reflect and express themselves through original essays on the link between democratic values and the quality of media in Canada. Each Award consists of a cash prize of $5,000 as well as a bronze cast medal by Canadian sculptress Dora de Pédèry-Hunt.
"I'm thrilled to be receiving the Dalton Camp award, named after such a distinguished New Brunswicker and Canadian," said Kurt Peacock. "I think he would have agreed with a great deal of the argument I put forward in my essay: that for Canada to work, its national media needs to recognize the importance of including all parts of Canada in any national debate."
Mr. Peacock’s winning essay asserts that the tendency of national media outlets to cover only big city news has unnecessarily "turned our country into one of a hollow central federation made up of many mutually suspicious solitudes."
Kurt Peacock is a researcher and historian. He has previously written for the Toronto Star, the Globe and Mail, the National Post, and the Telegraph Journal. He is currently working with Vibrant Communities Saint John, a community initiative designed to reduce poverty in Canada's oldest incorporated city.
"I wrote about a specific instance of how the actions of a large media chain had the effect of limiting the diversity of independent voices in the news media," said Megan Wennberg.
Ms. Wennberg’s essay chronicles the rise and fall of an independent Saint John newspaper - here - which was bought in October 2004 by Brunswick News, part of a media empire which owns every English-language daily newspaper in New Brunswick.
Megan Wennberg is a freelance writer, photographer and filmmaker living in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Megan has a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Mount Allison University, and a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of King's College. Originally from Saint John, New Brunswick, she has lived and worked across Canada.
The Dalton Camp Award is available to up to three Canadians each year, the winners of an essay competition on how the media influence Canadian democracy. The Dalton Camp Award Selection Committee is chaired by Jim Byrd; the other members are Knowlton Nash and Maggie Siggins.
Friends of Canadian Broadcasting is is an independent, Canada-wide, non- partisan voluntary organization supported by 64,000 households whose mission is to defend and enhance the quality and quantity of Canadian programming in Canada's audio-visual system. FRIENDS is not affiliated with any broadcaster or political party.
The winning essays and additional information about the Dalton Camp Award can be found at: http://www.friends.ca/DCA
About the Award