Books

Shelagh Rogers, Lawrence Hill named Library and Archives Canada Scholars

CBC Radio host Shelagh Rogers and author Lawrence Hill are among the first five Canadians to receive this new award, which recognize contributions to 'literature and heritage.'
Radio host Shelagh Rogers and author Lawrence Hill are among the first recipients of the Library and Archives Canada Scholars Awards. (CBC Radio, lawrencehill.com)

CBC Radio host Shelagh Rogers and author Lawrence Hill are among five Canadians to receive the inaugural Library and Archives Canada Scholars Awards, recognizing their dedication to "promoting literature and heritage" and making "a significant contribution to Canada."

The other recipients include Radio-Canada's Marie-Louise Arsenault, who hosts the literary talk show Plus on est de fous, plus on lit!, acclaimed author Frances Itani and Lucy Maud Montgomery historian, Ronald I. Cohen.

Library and Archives Canada, a government institution based in Ottawa, Ont. that houses an extensive array of documents relating to Canadian history, gave out these awards on the evening of Tuesday, April 2, 2019.

Rogers has been the host of CBC's national program The Next Chapter for 11 seasons. The weekly radio show broadcasts Rogers's wide-ranging interviews with Canadian literary stars and emerging talent, keeping listeners abreast of the country's vibrant literature scene. 

"What an enormous honour. Thank you for this," said Rogers, in a pre-recorded acceptance speech for the ceremony.

"I'd also like to thank the thousands of authors that I've interviewed over my 400 years at the CBC for answering my questions."

Hill and Itani are among Canada's most celebrated writers.

Hill is the author of the novels The Book of Negroes and The Illegalwhich both won Canada Reads, as well as the nonfiction book Black Berry, Sweet Juice

Itani has published short stories, children's books, poetry and novels, including to the Scotiabank Giller Prize nominee Tell and, most recently, That's My Baby.

Arsenault has been a culture, arts and media journalist for 20 years. She has been hosting her daily literary show Plus on est de fous, plus on lit! since 2011 and also hosts the weekly television program Dans les médias. She hosted Combat des livres in 2018.

Cohen is the curator of extensive bibliographies of Lucy Maud Montgomery and Sir Winston Churchill. He has been a board member of the Friends of Library and Archives Canada since 1991.

The awards ceremony also marked the launch of the new Library and Archives Canada Foundation, which will focus on raising funds to support Library and Archives Canada.

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