Siddiqui, Haroon

Posted Nov 1, 2006      •Permalink      • Printer-Friendly Version Bookmark and Share

Haroon Siddiqui, C.M., O.Ont., (born June 1, 1942) is an Indo-Canadian newspaper journalist, columnist and a former editor.

While still at the Press Trust, he had met Roland Michener, then Canada’s High Commissioner to India, who had encouraged him to emigrate to Canada. By October 1967, also encouraged by friends who spoke well of the country, he had moved to Toronto. After a brief stint selling menswear at Simpson’s, he took a job at the Brandon Sun in Brandon, Manitoba, reporting with special attention to municipal and provincial politics from 1968 to 1978.

In 1978, he joined the Toronto Star, becoming foreign affairs analyst in 1979, news editor in 1982 and national editor in 1985. From 1990 to 1998, Siddiqui was the Star’s editorial page editor, and on his departure from that position, he was given the special title of editorial page editor emeritus, a role consulting Star publisher Beland Honderich, and a twice-weekly column, which focuses on national and international politics and cultural and religious diversity.

Siddiqui has served as president of PEN Canada, on the boards of directors of the Calmeadow Foundation (a microcredit lender), the Canadian Club of Toronto, and the advisory board of the Ryerson University school of journalism, and has been active in the Canadian Newspaper Association and Advertising Standards Canada.

Siddiqui and his wife, Yasmeem, have two sons. Yasmeem Siddiqui, a race relations consultant, was appointed to the Immigration and Refugee Board in Toronto in the mid 1990s.

In 2000, he became a member of the Order of Ontario, and in 2001 a member of the Order of Canada, for his journalism and his voluntary work. In 2001, Siddiqui was awarded an honorary Doctor of Letters from York University.

He shared a 1983 National Newspaper Award for spot news reporting, and was shortlisted in his own right for editorial writing in 1992 and column writing in 1998. Siddiqui received a Professional Man of the Year award from Indo-Canadian Chamber of Commerce, and a media award from the Canadian Islamic Congress.

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