The board of directors of the Gordon Sinclair Foundation meets in Toronto on Thursday, June 16 for the foundation’s annual general meeting and to announce this year’s winner of the Gordon Sinclair Roving Reporter Bursary.
The Roving Reporter Bursary was created in memory of Gordon Sinclair, who made his name gallivanting around the world for the Toronto Star in the 1930s. The bursary replaces a university scholarship for journalism students that has been given out annually since 1986 by the Gordon Sinclair Foundation, established by friends of the remarkable journalist, author, radio commentator and television personality who until his death in 1984, was one of Canada’s most enduring celebrities. He earned that celebrity during a career that included periods with the Toronto Star, CFRB radio and as a panelist on CBC’s long- running news quiz program Front Page Challenge.
At a time when most news organizations have cut back on travel, the Gordon Sinclair Roving Reporter Bursary is meant to support a major research and reporting trip by an early career Canadian journalist who has within the past five years graduated from one of Canada’s university-level journalism programs. The purpose of the $15,000 bursary is to encourage a young journalist to get off the beaten track and to spend a considerable period – a minimum of six weeks – away on a reporting assignment.
Applicants to the Gordon Sinclair Roving Reporter Bursary were invited to submit a proposal to travel abroad or to a region of Canada that is not usually well covered by the media and to research and then prepare a substantial body of journalistic work on an important issue.
Two of Sinclair’s former employers – the Toronto Star and the CBC – are associated with the bursary and have undertaken to provide mentorship by senior editors to the bursary winner as she prepares for her reporting trip and then to consider their work for publication or broadcast.