Michener-Deacon Fellowship recipient to report and investigate on issues relative to governance of the federal public service.
Julie Ireton, a reporter and producer at the CBC, is the recipient of the 2010 Michener-Deacon Fellowship. The Fellowship was presented during the annual Michener Award ceremony held at Rideau Hall in Ottawa on May 27, 2010.
Ms Ireton will use the Michener-Deacon Fellowship to investigate and report on ‘intermediaries, double-dipping and cronyism’ in the federal public service. The judges agreed unanimously that her proposal embodies the sort of in-depth news focus the Michener-Deacon Fellowship is designed to support. In her acceptance speech, Ms Ireton said that in the world of spot news and the 24 hour news cycle, getting four months to devote to an issue is a real luxury and a responsibility she doesn’t take lightly. (full text)
The workforce tasked with keeping this country operating smoothly and efficiently isn’t so smooth and efficient. Many people believe the federal public service is rife with problems. Contractors fill many jobs and most of them are actually hired by “middle-man” firms who collectively charge the government millions of dollars a year.
Some departments can’t find experienced staff to fill jobs, so in many cases, fully pensioned, retired public servants are “double dipping” by coming back to work as consultants. The situation could get worse as the average public servant ages and people leave the workforce. Ms Ireton feels that many of these issues are worth a serious and thorough examination. She proposes to prepare a series of investigative stories on the public service to air on CBC radio and television and to write a report to be published online at www.cbc.ca. (Update: Julie Ireton Fellowship report. Ms Ireton has also established a blog dedicated to her Fellowship research on the federal public service. Her stories can be found at the following web site: http://www.cbc.ca/ottawa/features/investigations
Julie Ireton is the business and technology reporter at CBC Ottawa where she has worked for more than 15 years. Her reporting covers a wide range of topics – from investigating corporate corruption, to scrutinizing the development industry to highlighting Ottawa’s technology field. She was the first reporter to break the story that the high technology company Nortel Networks was filing for bankruptcy. Her report was the culmination of months of research and her continued coverage of this story earned her the 2010 RTNDA Ron Laidlaw Award. She previously won the Japan Assignment Award from the Asia Pacific Foundation, enabling her to report on a biotechnology partnership between Japanese researchers and Canadian scientists. She was also the recipient of the Registered Nurses Association Award for excellence in health care reporting two years in a row.
Julie has a B.A. from York University’s Glendon College and a Master of Journalism degree from Carleton University.
Rideau Hall – May 27, 2010
Judges for the 2010 Michener-Deacon Fellowship:
Lindsay Crysler (chair), former managing editor of The Gazette, Montreal; former director journalism department, Concordia University, Montreal; Clinton Archibald, professor of public ethics, St. Paul University, Ottawa; Lynne Van Luven, associate professor of journalism & creative non-fiction, University of Victoria; Erin Steuter, chair, sociology department, Mount Allison University, Sackville, NB; Michael Goldbloom, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Bishops University, Sherbrooke, Quebec, and former publisher of The Gazette and the Toronto Star.
The fellowship of the Michener Awards Foundation, introduced in 1987, is known today as the Michener-Deacon Fellowship (named after the late Roland Michener and the late Paul Deacon, a senior media executive and Michener Awards Foundation president). The fellowship is to encourage excellence in investigative print and broadcast journalism that serves the public interest through values that benefit the community. Mature journalists are invited to submit written outlines for studies over four months that will strengthen their competence.