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Early and political life
MacAdam attended St. Francis Xavier University, in Antigonish, Nova Scotia from 1952 until 1956. He served as the editor-in-chief of the student newspaper The Xaverian Weekly in 1955, the same year he met longtime friend Brian Mulroney when Mulroney was a freshman and MacAdam was a senior.
MacAdam would serve as a political advisor to Mulroney during his term as Prime Minister of Canada, taking a job at the High Commission of Canada in London. After Mulroney's term ended in 1993, MacAdam was accused of tax evasion, and eventually convicted in 1997.
In addition to a weekly column in the Ottawa Sun, MacAdam has written several books:
- The record speaks! (1961)
- Unbelievable Canadian War Stories (2006)
- "Big Cy" and Other Characters: Pat MacAdam's Cape Breton (2006), nominated for a Stephen Leacock Award in 2007.
- Gold Medal Misfits (2007)
- Mulroney's Man: Memoirs and Misadventures of an Ottawa Insider (2008)
- John Sawatsky, Mulroney: The Politics of Ambition (Macfarlane Walter & Ross, 1991). An early chapter on Mulroney's freshman year at StFX in 1955 talks about his friendship with Pat MacAdam, then editor-in-chief of the Xaverian.