Peter Mansbridge

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Peter Mansbridge
Peter Mansbridge.jpg
Mansbridge at Mount Allison University in May 2011
Born (1948-07-06) July 6, 1948 (age 65)
London, England
Residence Stratford, Ontario
Nationality Canadian
Occupation journalist, news presenter
Years active 1968–present
Employer Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
Television The National, Mansbridge One on One
Spouse(s) Parm Dhillon (?–1975)[1]
Wendy Mesley (1989–1992)
Cynthia Dale (1998–present)
Children two daughters, one son

Peter Mansbridge,  OC, LLD, (born July 6, 1948), is an English-Canadian broadcaster and news anchor. He is chief correspondent for CBC News and anchor of The National, CBC Television's flagship nightly newscast. Mansbridge has received many awards and accolades for his journalistic work including an honorary doctorate from Mount Allison University where he is serving as chancellor until December 2017.[2]

Early life[edit]

Mansbridge was born in London, England to Stanley Harry Mansbridge (1918-2005), an RAF Wing Commander, civil servant (in Britain, Malaya, Alberta and Canada) and Brena Louise Mansbridge (d. 2008). He and his siblings Paul and Wendy were raised in Ottawa, Ontario, where he attended Glebe Collegiate Institute, but dropped out before graduating. He served in the Royal Canadian Navy in 1966 and 1967 and completed high school at Trinity College School in Port Hope, Ontario.

Newscasting career[edit]

While working at Churchill Airport in Churchill, Manitoba in 1968, Mansbridge was recruited to work for a local radio station by a CBC Radio Manager, Harold Brown, who heard his voice making a flight announcement for Transair (Mansbridge's regular job was as a baggage handler). From there, he moved to CBC Radio's northern service, still in Churchill. In 1971 he moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba to continue as a reporter for CBC Radio and while there in 1972 began as a reporter for CBC Television.

In 1975, he became The National's reporter for Saskatchewan, and in 1976 he became parliamentary correspondent in Ottawa. Following a decade of political coverage, Mansbridge had become a substitute anchor for Knowlton Nash and in 1988, was reportedly being recruited by U.S. broadcaster CBS for a prominent position. Nash voluntarily gave up his position as anchor later that year so that Mansbridge would be promoted to anchor and remain in Canada.

During his tenure at the helm of CBC's flagship newscast beginning May 1, 1988 (as co-anchor of CBC Prime Time News from November 1992 to fall 1995, and as sole anchor of The National otherwise), he has covered Canadian news stories including federal elections, party leadership conventions, the Meech Lake Accord negotiations, the Charlottetown Accord and its referendum, the 1995 Quebec referendum, floods in Manitoba in 1997, ice storms in Ontario and Quebec in 1998, the six days in September 2000 that marked the death and state funeral of Pierre Trudeau, the 2003 blackout across much of Eastern North America and the death and state funeral of Jack Layton. His coverage of the blackout was notable because the normally clean-shaven Mansbridge had grown a beard during his summer hiatus (as he did every summer), and the news of the blackout broke with no time for him to shave. Thus, Canadian viewers saw a bearded Peter Mansbridge reporting on the events of that day.

He has also anchored coverage of many world events, both in the studio and on the scene. In the studio, he anchored coverage of the Gulf War, the War in Kosovo, and the events surrounding September 11, 2001. He was on the air live when the 2003 invasion of Iraq began and anchored coverage of it. On the scene, he anchored coverage of the fall of the Berlin Wall, the funerals of Diana, Princess of Wales and Pope John Paul II, numerous royal, papal, and U.S. presidential visits to Canada, numerous Olympic Games, and the inauguration of U.S. President Barack Obama. He reported extensively from Normandy both 50 and then 60 years after D-Day and from the United Kingdom and the Netherlands for the fiftieth anniversary of V-E Day. He also reported from the Netherlands for the sixtieth anniversary of V-E Day.

In 1999, he launched a new program, Mansbridge One on One, in which he interviews newsmakers.

With the retirement of Lloyd Robertson of CTV National News on September 1, 2011, Mansbridge became the longest-serving active anchor among the big three anchors in Canada, as Dawna Friesen had taken over as anchor at Global National only in 2010.[3] Lisa LaFlamme taking over for Robertson also meant that Mansbridge is the only male anchor among the big three anchors in Canada (Mansbridge, LaFlamme, and Friesen).[4]

Personal life[edit]

Mansbridge has been married three times. His previous marriage to CBC colleague Wendy Mesley (January 6, 1989–1992) became regular tabloid fodder in Frank Magazine as their marriage ended.[5] He has been married to Canadian actress Cynthia Dale since November 14, 1998,[6] and they have a son, William, born in 1999.[7] Mansbridge has two daughters from a first marriage to Parm Dhillon which ended in 1975. He lives in Stratford, Ontario with his family, and also has a summer cottage in the Gatineau Hills.[8]

Awards and honorary degrees[edit]

In 2008, he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada, the second grade of the second highest civilian honour in Canada.[9] In that capacity, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal was also conferred upon him in 2012.

Mansbridge has received several honorary degrees:

Year University Honorary Degree
1999 Mount Allison University, Sackville, New Brunswick Doctor of Laws[10]
2001 University of Manitoba, Winnipeg Doctor of Laws[11]
2005 Ryerson University, Toronto Doctor of Journalism[12]
2008 University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario Doctor of Laws[13]
2010 University of Windsor, Windsor, Ontario Doctor of Laws[14]


  1. ^ Moore, Micki (8 June 1990). "Peter Mansbridge In the right place at the right time". Toronto Star. p. B1. 
  2. ^ "Mount Allison University reappoints Peter Mansbridge as Chancellor". Mount Allison University. February 15, 2013. 
  3. ^ Lackner, Chris (September 2, 2011). "Global marks news anniversary; Series will showcase major events covered during its 10-year run". The Montreal Gazette. p. C10. 
  4. ^ Zerbisias, Antonia (September 22, 2010). "The hair is gone, but not the passion: Peter Mansbridge, the voice of CBC-TV since 1988, is nowhere near ready to give up the reins at The National". Toronto Star. p. E1. 
  5. ^ McDonald, Marci (26 May 1997). "Canada's Star News Anchors". Maclean's. Retrieved 2008-03-24. 
  6. ^ "Mansbridge marries Dale". CBC News. 17 November 1998. Retrieved 2008-03-24. 
  7. ^ Curtain falls on Stratford's leading lady, The Toronto Star, October 28, 2007
  8. ^ "Famous Canadian Cottagers: Peter Mansbridge". Cottage Life. 4 June 2012. Retrieved 26 June 2013. 
  9. ^ "Peter Mansbridge". Governor General of Canada. Retrieved 17 June 2013. 
  10. ^ "Mansbridge named Mount Allison University chancellor". CBC. November 9, 2009. 
  11. ^ "University of Manitoba History: Honorary Degrees Recipients". University of Manitoba. 
  12. ^ "Ryerson Honorary Doctorates". Ryerson University. 
  13. ^ "Chrétien among honorary degree recipients". Western News. 3 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-10. 
  14. ^ "CBC's Peter Mansbridge gets honorary degree". CBC News. 17 June 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-29. 

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