Bob Cox

  • Born in Alice Munro country

    My birthplace seems an unlikely spot for a Nobel Prize winner in literature to call home. I was born in Clinton, Ont., and grew up on a nearby farm, a short distance from where Alice Munro wrote many of the stories that have earned her the world's most prestigious prize for literature, which was formally awarded today in Stockholm, without Munro in attendance.
  • Funny thing happened on way to future

    While neighbours in Alberta and Saskatchewan enjoyed the wealth of King Oil, Manitobans sat back and waited patiently for their own days of energy prosperity. It would take time, a slow shift to a green-conscious economy and big investment in infrastructure, but sure enough, the province's clean, low-cost electricity, generated safely and reliably by northern power dams, would be the oil of the 21st century to meet the never-ending demands of American consumers.
  • Whither the 'conservative' party in Manitoba?

    Is Manitoba about to get a new political party? The answer is a definite maybe. Or maybe not. It depends. There is clearly frustration in some parts with a provincial political climate that has led to four elections in a row with almost identical results -- NDP majorities with 32 to 37 seats in the legislature, facing Progressive Conservative oppositions with 24 to 19 seats.
  • Should CBC lose 10 per cent of its funding?

    The knives are out for the CBC. The Conservative federal government is looking to pare costs and, with a newly minted majority, it has put the CBC on the block with every other federal agency, asking for scenarios that would involve cutting five per cent or 10 per cent from their budgets.
  • Tornado tears up the 'prettiest town in Canada'

    I misspent a good chunk of my youth driving around Courthouse Square in Goderich looking for excitement. It was what teenagers did on a Friday night in the small Ontario town in the 1970s -- and the unique octagonal street around the Square provided the perfect track for cruising in endless circles.
  • Focus on crime, not statistics

    Lies, damn lies and statistics. The old line about how easy it is to manipulate statistics came to mind again this week as yet another critic of Statistics Canada took aim at the agency's data on crime rates.
  • Fight continues to protect public interest

    A decade after he first broke stories on the federal sponsorship scandal, you would not think journalist Daniel Leblanc would still be fighting to protect his best source. But there he was last week, smiling in the Art Deco halls of the Supreme Court of Canada as he learned he and his newspaper, The Globe and Mail, would be headed back to a lower court to resume his struggle to protect his confidential source -- known as MaChouette.
  • Tickets talk, signs don't

    One day in Toronto, city workers arrived on the lane near my house -- a rutted, narrow, curved path, heavily used by school children -- to take measurements so it could be smoothed and widened, eliminating the dirt shoulders. I found the supervisor and questioned the logic of the plan, pointing out that cars already drove too fast down the lane, and they would speed up on a new lane, posing an even greater threat to children who would have to use the same cement surface as the vehicles.
  • Why that plane is here

    When you're a child and you see a massive airplane suspended on three posts, you ask questions. Like: "Why is that plane here?"
  • The whirling world of media

    A decade ago, Canada's newspaper industry was in a tizzy and I got caught up in the whirlwind. I ended up working for four different newspaper owners in 46 days. On July 31, 2000, I was working as city editor of the Edmonton Journal when Conrad Black sold the paper -- and many others -- to Canwest, as Winnipeg's Asper family expanded their media empire to combine newspapers with broadcasting, including the Global TV network.
  • Thanks, Mellisa, for building our pride

    Dear Mellisa Hollingsworth:  
  • Airport security in land of the underpants bomber

    As a conscientious traveller, I prepared carefully for a recent trip to the United States -- everything packed in a checked bag, no gels, no liquids, no carry-on luggage except for a small computer. I was feeling pretty proud of myself, standing in line to board a plane in Chicago after being allowed into the U.S. without a hitch.
  • $1.1 billion is enough for CBC

    I got a couple of emails in the past few days asking me to show my support for the CBC by going to a CRTC website and telling the federal broadcast regulator that the CBC should be allowed to charge cable companies for the network's local TV signals. It's not odd that I would get an email asking me to support the CBC. I love the CBC. I listen to CBC Radio sometimes for hours a day, my kids are hooked on shows such as The Debaters and I like a lot of CBC TV -- Being Erica is a particular favourite. You won't hear me complain about my tax dollars going to support such work.
  • No kid should think holiday won't happen

    AS a child growing up on an On­tario farm, I recall Christmas as the day when everything was magical. Real life got suspended. The drudgery of daily chores gave way to sprints to the barn and brief spurts of frenzied work between long spells in the house filled with eating and exchanging gifts. Breakfast consisted of as much ice cream as a child could eat. Later there would be rare luxuries like soda pop and oranges -- and an overflowing plate of candies that we could grab whenever we wanted.
  • Let me tell you about Doug

    Eds. note: Doug Speirs failed to file his column under strict new guidelines imposed by the publisher. "Get the column in before we send the newspaper to the presses," the publisher barked. "But the B.C. Lions are playing," Speirs said, "and I have to get my hair cut and the dogs need to be walked..." "Look, Doug, anybody could do what you do," the publisher said. "If you don't do it, I'll do it myself." You know the rest of the story. So here is the publisher's humour column. We all laughed, in the appropriate places for the appropriate amount of time, and we really meant it since, well, he is the publisher.
  • Judge's ban sets precedent

    A Winnipeg judge has made legal history by banning a newspaper reporter from her courtroom. At this point you're probably saying: "Boy, that reporter must have done something terrible. What did he do? Threaten a witness? Smuggle a video camera into court? Yell at the judge during proceedings?"
  • It's CTV, not local news, that is facing threat

    Put the starving kid on the poster. It's a tried and true formula. Every group that has ever made a public appeal for money knows that you use emotion, not reason.
  • 'Explosion' scared the pants off him

    The day my pants exploded, I knew I was in trouble. A pair of navy corduroy pants, with a sturdy brass button, had been under the Christmas tree.

About Bob Cox

Bob Cox was named publisher of the Winnipeg Free Press in November 2007. He joined the newspaper as editor in May 2005.

"Rejoined" is a better word for it, because Bob first worked at the newspaper as a reporter in January 1984. He covered crime and courts for three years before getting restless and moving on to other journalism jobs.

Since then, his career has spanned four provinces and five cities. Highlights include working in Ottawa for the Canadian Press covering Prime Minister Jean Chrétien during his first term in office, and five years at the Globe and Mail in Toronto, first as national editor and later as night editor.

Bob grew up on a farm in southwestern Ontario, but has spent most of his adult life in Western Canada in Winnipeg, Regina and Edmonton.

bob.cox@freepress.mb.ca

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