Writers’ Trust Announces Jury for the 2016 Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing
March 14, 2017 – Toronto – The Writers’ Trust of Canada has revealed the three-member jury for the 2016 Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing, awarded annually for a book of literary nonfiction published in the previous year that captures a political subject of relevance to Canadian readers, and has the potential to shape or influence thinking on Canadian political life. The jurors are: CBC foreign correspondent Nahlah Ayed; National Post columnist Colby Cosh; and former Member of Parliament Megan Leslie.
The prizewinner will receive $25,000; prize nominees will receive $2,500 each. Recent winners include John Ibbitson for Stephen Harper, Joseph Heath for Enlightenment 2.0: Restoring Sanity to Our Politics, Our Economy, and Our Lives, and Paul Wells for The Longer I’m Prime Minister: Stephen Harper and Canada.
Finalists will be announced on March 21, 2017. The prizewinner will be announced at the Politics and the Pen gala at the Fairmont Château Laurier in Ottawa on May 10, 2017.
About the Jury
Nahlah Ayed is a CBC foreign correspondent based in London. A veteran of international reportage, she began her career covering the Middle East for nearly a decade. Prior to joining CBC News, Ayed was a parliamentary reporter for The Canadian Press. She is the author of the memoir A Thousand Farewells: A Reporter’s Journey from Refugee Camp to the Arab Spring, which was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Literary Award for Nonfiction in 2012.
Colby Cosh is a columnist for the National Post. He served on the newspaper’s editorial board from 2007-09 before becoming an assistant editor and columnist at Maclean’s magazine, where he was a National Magazine Award finalist in 2013. A native and resident of Edmonton, Colby was the editor of the Second World War volume of the Alberta in the 20th Century book series.
Megan Leslie is vice president, Oceans for World Wildlife Fund Canada. She is a former Member of Parliament for Halifax and served as the NDP’s environment critic and deputy leader of the Official Opposition. In 2015, she was named a Top 10 Environmental Leader in Canada by Power & Influence magazine. In the same year, she was also named one of the most influential people in government and politics by The Hill Times. Leslie lives in Halifax.
The Shaughnessy Cohen Prize is sponsored by Aimia and supported by the Politics and the Pen gala.
About the Prize
Now in its 17th year, the prize is awarded annually for a book of literary nonfiction that captures a political subject of relevance to Canadian readers and has the potential to shape or influence thinking on Canadian political life. The winning work combines compelling new insights with depth of research and is of significant literary merit. The prize particularly values books which provide the general reader with an informed, unique perspective on the practice of Canadian politics, its players, or its principles.
About the Writers’ Trust of Canada
The Writers’ Trust of Canada is a charitable organization that seeks to advance, nurture, and celebrate Canadian writers and writing through a portfolio of programs including literary awards, a fellowship, financial grants, scholarships, and a writers’ retreat. Writers’ Trust programming is designed to champion excellence in Canadian writing, to improve the status of writers, and to create connections between writers and readers. Canada’s writers receive more financial support from the Writers’ Trust than from any other non-governmental organization or foundation in the country.
For more information and interview opportunities contact:
Michaela Cornell, 647-274-6112