George Tuccaro leaves northerners with some sage words as he heads South

The former CBC North broadcaster and N.W.T. commissioner urged northerners to pursue journalism and communication work in either English or Indigenous languages.

Former CBC broadcaster and N.W.T. commissioner encourages northerners to pursue journalism

George Tuccaro, a former CBC North broadcaster and commissioner of the Northwest Territories, is also an accomplished musician. Tuccaro is moving to Red Deer, Alta. to be near family. (Juanita Taylor/CBC)

As he makes his exit out of the territory, George Tuccaro, a former commissioner of the Northwest Territories and CBC North broadcaster, is encouraging northern residents to pursue journalism and communications.

"Communication is part of learning," he said. "You're teaching the people what exactly is happening around the world." 

Tuccaro urged CBC's Trail's End listeners on Friday to consider journalism and communication work in either English or Indigenous languages.

Tuccaro grew up in Fort Chipewyan, Alta., and moved to Yellowknife in 1970. His CBC North broadcasting career spanned more than two decades, including stints hosting Trail's End and CBC TV's Northbeat. He also started a booking agency for northern performers, organized cultural events, and created GLT Communications, which ran workshops and events.

Tuccaro has been a familiar face at events around the Northwest Territories acting as a master of ceremonies, comedian and musician. In 2010, he was appointed commissioner of the Northwest Territories.

George Tuccaro and his wife Marilyn are seen in a home in Yellowknife in this undated photo. Tuccaro moved to Yellowknife in 1970 and is now moving with Marilyn to Red Deer, Alta. (Submitted by Wayne Collins)

But Tuccaro's time in the North has come to a close, and soon he'll be moving with his wife Marilyn to Red Deer, Alta., to be closer to family.

As he graced northern airwaves for what may be the last time, Tuccaro offered sage words about learning from elders.

"I heard it put this way, that every time we lose an elder a library of northern knowledge burns down, because we can't gain that knowledge anymore it's gone. It's left for that person," he said. 

"So we need to be able to glean that information from our elders before they leave us so that we can continue to move on and in a good way, and to be able to help the North become the beautiful place, and continue to be the beautiful place, where we live."

George Tuccaro cleans grayling during a fishing trip with friends in this undated photo. (Submitted by Wayne Collins.)

Written by Sidney Cohen based on an interview with Lawrence Nayally