LSM Newswire

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Veteran journalist Rosemary Thompson named National Arts Centre Director of Communications and Public Affairs

(Ottawa, Canada) – The National Arts Centre (NAC) today announced the appointment of Rosemary Thompson as Director of Communications and Public Affairs.

Ms. Thompson, an award-winning reporter who is currently deputy bureau chief for the national CTV News, will start her new role at the NAC on November 2nd. She takes over the position from Jayne Watson, who was recently named CEO of the National Arts
Centre Foundation, the organization’s fundraising arm.

“Journalism is a calling, but so are the arts.” said Ms. Thompson, who is fluently bilingual in French and English. “CTV has let me do everything a journalist could dream of doing. But I also have a passion for music and theatre and dance. I'll be telling the Canadian story in a different way through the National Arts Centre.” 


“We are thrilled to have Rosemary on board,” said Peter Herrndorf, President and CEO of the National Arts Centre. “She brings a pan Canadian view to the position, having lived in both the eastern and western parts of Canada. Her experience and extensive contacts will be invaluable as we continue working with artists, arts organizations and arts educators across the country.”

As a journalist, Rosemary Thompson has covered it all. She was CTV's Montreal Bureau Chief in 1995 and had a seat on the campaign bus during the referendum. She was posted in Washington as CTV’s correspondent in 2000 and covered the events of 9-11 and its aftermath. Then it was off to Ottawa where she has covered every leadership convention and election over the past seven years.

Ms. Thompson’s western ties will be a definite asset to the NAC as it prepares to host the 2011 Prairie Scene festival to feature hundreds of artists from Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

“My journalistic roots are firmly planted in the prairies,” said Ms. Thompson. “CBC Winnipeg gave me my first break in television. I was a cub reporter at the Manitoba Legislature when Gary Doer was an opposition Member of the Legislative Assembly.” (Ms. Thompson’s has another strong prairie connection through her sister Virginia Thompson who was executive producer of Corner Gas, the wildly successful TV series set in Saskatchewan.)

At the age of five, Rosemary Thompson's father enrolled her in piano lessons at Vincent D'Indy, a well known conservatory in Montreal. For 15 years she practised, and hoped one day she would work in the arts. “I am excited to come back to the arts and to be part of the NAC team,” added Ms. Thompson.

Ms. Thompson has won numerous awards during her journalistic career for her coverage of major news events, including a nod from America’s National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in recognition of her reporting of the September 11, 2001, attacks and their aftermath. She was also nominated for a Gemini for her work on Million Dollar Babies, a documentary about the Dionne Quintuplets.

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