Nova Scotia

The Chronicle Herald publisher dies at 84

Graham Dennis, longtime publisher of The Chronicle Herald, died Thursday evening at the age of 84.
Graham Dennis, publisher of The Chronicle Herald, died Thursday at home in Halifax. (CBC)

Graham Dennis, publisher of The Chronicle Herald, died Thursday evening at the age of 84.

Dennis, who died at home after a brief illness, was fiercely proud of Nova Scotia and the fact the provincial paper remained independent throughout his 57-year tenure.

Associate publisher Ian Thompson, who was Dennis's brother-in-law, said over the years many people came knocking, hoping to buy the paper.

"He decided each and every time that Nova Scotia would be better with a paper owned by Nova Scotians," Thompson said.

During his decades as publisher, Dennis met Pope John Paul II, Queen Elizabeth and numerous prime ministers, but Thompson said he was never influenced by politicians.

"He was not a partisan. He remained loyal to Nova Scotia above all else," Thompson said.

Dennis made his passion for the paper clear during his induction to the Nova Scotia Business Hall of Fame in 2005.

"The limelight, as some of you know, is not a place I like or want to be," Dennis said then. "A publisher's role in my mind is to be a humble peddler of papers and a promoter — you Tories and Liberals better realize this — and a promoter of this area where we all live," he told the crowd.

He was the third generation in his family to run the newspaper.

He took control of the paper at age 26, when his father, William Henry Dennis, died in 1954.