Alumni Memory: Ray Ford, BJ ’87

Love & Kindness found in J-School

My best memory is meeting my wife-to-be, Sue in a relationship that has almost — almost — outlasted the existence of print journalism itself.

But the memory I want to share is of the kindness, generosity and patience of all those people who agreed to be interviewed by squads of J-School students, including me. During my time pounding the pavement for Centretown News or making calls from the bank of rotary phones in the St. Pat’s Building, or just working on various assignments, I probably talked to hundreds of helpful folks, including priests, chaplains, people struggling with mental and physical illnesses, people without homes, protesters, politicians, doctors, senators, police and military officers, hospital staff, farmers, business owners, athletes, fellow students, many bureaucrats, and the person we used to call “The Man in the Street”. And you know what? The vast majority of them were super nice to me. They answered my questions. They explained issues patiently. They took repeated calls as a wet-behind-the-ears kid asked just one more thing.

When I look back, there were so many remarkable things about J-School, including the great people I learned from and with. But the people who allowed us mere students to practise our craft on them, to use them as subjects in interviews and stories, those folks deserve tremendous thanks. – Ray Ford (BJ ’87)

Alumni Memories are part of Carleton Journalism’s 75th Anniversary.

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Friday, May 7, 2021 in
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