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Patrick Watson, CC (born December 23, 1929) has been a prolific and outspoken Canadianmarker broadcaster, author, commentator and television writer, producer and director for five decades. Born in Torontomarker, Watson attended the University of Torontomarker and graduated with an MA, then completed his doctorate at the University of Michiganmarker.

Watson first achieved national fame (and in some quarters, notoriety) as the co-producer and with Laurier LaPierre an on-camera host of the CBC Television current affairs program This Hour Has Seven Days in the 1960s. Watson went on to write, edit and/or produce The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau, Witness to Yesterday, Titans, The Watson Report, The Canadian Establishment series, the Historica Foundation's Heritage Minutes, The Canadians: Biographies of a Nation and The Struggle for Democracy series. The latter has since aired in over 40 countries around the world. Watson also hosted the CBC's business program Venture when it was first launched in 1985. The Historica Foundation's Heritage Minutes were an initiative of Watson's begun in 1988 at Charles Bronfman's CRB Foundation, and as of 2007 were receiving more than 30,000 plays a year across the Canadian television system.

Watson was Chairman of the CBC from 1989 until 1994. He was the recipient of honorary Doctor of Laws degrees from Mount Allison University in 2002 and the University of Toronto in 2004. He was invested as an Officer of the Order of Canada on October 21, 1981, then promoted to Companion on October 26, 2002. Watson continues to write, lecture, advise and work in many capacities in broadcasting from his current home in Torontomarker.

Watson has acted in more than 50 dramatic productions, including the movie The Terry Fox Story, and the HBO movie Countdown to Looking Glass.

Few in his various audiences realize his slight limp was caused by the amputation of his left leg above the knee in 1960 following an accident. He has often assisted the Canadian disabled community, including serving as Honorary Chair of the Canadian Amputee Sports Association and Chairman Emeritus of the Canadian Abilities Foundation.

Selected bibliography

  • The Struggle for Democracy
  • Alter Ego
  • Alexander Dolgun's Story: An American in the Gulag, with Alexander Dolgun
  • Faranella's City
  • This Hour Has Seven Decades, autobiography
  • Wittgenstein and the Goshawk, a fable for adults


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