|Senator for Ontario|
June 20, 2000 – January 4, 2001
|Appointed by||Jean Chrétien|
January 4, 1926
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
|Died||March 20, 2017(aged 91)|
|Occupation||Author, broadcaster, journalist|
Born and raised in Ottawa, Ontario, the daughter of Walter Herbert Styran and Janet Kincaid (McPhee) Styran, Kennedy graduated from Lisgar Collegiate Institute, and began her career with the Ottawa Citizen. She became a broadcaster, as a host of a local radio show, during a newspaper strike. She was soon hired away by CFRB in Toronto where she became host of The Betty Kennedy Show in 1959; the daily interview and public affairs show remained on the air for 27 years with Kennedy interviewing 25,000 guests ranging from Pierre Trudeau to Debbie Reynolds. In 1962, she joined the panel of the current affairs quiz show Front Page Challenge on CBC Television, remaining with the show until it went off the air in 1995.
She wrote two books: Gerhard: A love story (1975), about her late first husband, and Hurricane Hazel (1979). Kennedy also had a vital career as an Executive Producer for television. Her series, Insight with Betty Kennedy, aired on TV Ontario (OECA) during the early 1970s. Robert Gardner, who worked with Kennedy as a studio director on the series, said of her: "She was remarkable. We would tape five half hour interviews live-to-tape in a single day. She would prep each of the sessions with very prominent guests and would flawlessly interview them. Often there was only a space of fifteen minutes between each program. There were no re-takes and not a single chance for error." She also executive-produced Leave this Not to Cain (narrated by Pierre Berton), This Vibrant Land, and she hosted An Eye for Eternity (the international fine arts exhibition at Montreal).
She was appointed to the Senate by Prime Minister Jean Chrétien on June 20, 2000. She retired less than six months later on her 75th birthday.
Kennedy died on March 20, 2017, aged 91.
- In 1982 she was made an Officer of the Order of Canada.
- In 1983, she was elected to the Canadian News Hall of Fame.
- In 1992, she was elected to the Canadian Broadcasting Hall of Fame.
- In 1998, she was made a Serving Sister in the Venerable Order of Saint John.
- In 2007, she was inducted into the Milton, Ontario Walk of Fame
- "Front Page Challenge panellist, broadcaster Betty Kennedy dies at 91", Canadian Press. Retrieved March 21, 2017.
- "Journalist and broadcaster Betty Kennedy dies at 91". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved March 21, 2017.
- Watters, Haydn (March 21, 2017). "Journalist and broadcaster Betty Kennedy dead at 91". Cbc.ca. Retrieved March 21, 2017.
- "CBC Archives". Cbc.ca. September 11, 2001. Retrieved March 21, 2017.
- "Betty Kennedy, journalist and Front Page Challenge panellist, dead at 91". Thestar.com. Retrieved March 21, 2017.
- Canada Gazette Part I, Vol. 132, No. 13 Archived March 21, 2012, at the Wayback Machine.
- Betty Kennedy – Parliament of Canada biography
- Betty Kennedy at the Internet Movie Database
- "Kennedy, Betty (1926- )". Canadian Communications Foundation. Retrieved February 13, 2005.
- "APPOINTMENTS TO THE SENATE". Privy Council Office. Retrieved February 13, 2005.
- "CBC Digital Archives". Betty Kennedy, Reporter and Panellist. Retrieved December 2, 2009.
- Distinguished broadcaster Betty Kennedy was unflappable Globe and Mail obituary by Susan Ferrier Mackay, April 7, 2017.