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CTV News Toronto veteran Ken Shaw thanks viewers for their trust in final newscast
TORONTO -- In an emotional final newscast, CTV News Toronto’s veteran anchor Ken Shaw thanked viewers for their trust, saying that he has been overwhelmed with messages since he announced his retirement from the desk.
“I have spent my entire adult life in broadcasting, almost all of it in news and almost all of it right here,” he told viewers during the Monday night CTV News Toronto at Six newscast. “Thank you to all of my wonderful colleagues, there are so many to mention going back all these years, people I respect and admire. I fear that if I start to name them all, I will never leave.”
Shaw took a minute at the end of the newscast to talk about how journalism has changed amid the rise of fake news and efforts to vilify journalists holding people in power accountable.
“Our job is to report facts and keep opinion and bias out of the news,” he said. “CTV is Canada’s most trusted news organization in large part because of our editorial standards and policies. We publish them on our website and we stand by them every day. Truth is a valuable commodity, and so is trust.”
“Thank you for the trust you have given our team, and me.”
For more than 40 years, the veteran storyteller has been Toronto’s trusted source for daily local, national and international news.
As a reporter, he was first on scene to cover the aftermath of the Mississauga train derailment in 1979, an event that triggered the largest evacuation in Canadian history. A year later, he travelled to New York City to cover the death of John Lennon.
In April 2001, he became co-anchor of the weekday newscasts CTV News Toronto at Noon and CTV News Toronto at Six, where he guided viewers through countless elections, the coverage of the G20 Summit in 2010 and the deadly van attack in 2018.
Shaw announced his retirement last month, making sure to stress that he wouldn’t be leaving indefinitely. On Monday he confirmed that he would be back on CTV News in March with a series of reports on climate change.
Nathan Downer, a long-time anchor and reporter with CP24, will join Michelle Dubé as the new co-anchor of CTV News Toronto on Tuesday.
‘Ken Shaw is a legend,’ colleagues say
Shaw has been an institution in the CTV News Toronto newsroom. His colleagues say that he has become a friend to everyone who has worked with him, both in front of and behind the camera.
“I complemented him on his tie and he said that it was actually gifted to him by either the technical or the maintenance crew and so he wanted to show his appreciation for the gift and so he wears the tie on the air,” anchor Zuraidah Alman said. “That’s the type of person he is.”
“Ken really helps foster careers,” Queen’s Park Bureau Chief Colin D’Mello said. “He has never really been all about himself, he has really been about others and that’s from his personal life with all the charity work he has done, but also in his professional life.”
Shaw was elected to the Canadian News Hall of Fame in 2018 and received the Order of Ontario in 2010 for his volunteer work.
‘He’s not going to go sit in a rocking chair’
Shaw’s family said that his retirement from the anchor desk isn’t the end of his journalism career.
“He’s not going to go sit in a rocking chair somewhere. You’re talking about somebody who is going to find things to do, meaningful things to do,” his son Ryan Shaw said. “He’s going to pivot into doing other things that fulfill him.”
Shaw has always had a natural interest in the news, his sister Robyn Mowat said, and the family often talked about current affairs at the dinner table.
“The Ken that you see on the news is the same Ken that I see when I'm with him. He's a very sincere, kind and thoughtful person, and I'm very proud of him.”
Mayor proclaims Ken Shaw Day
Toronto Mayor John Tory announced over the weekend that Jan. 6, 2020 will be known as “Ken Shaw Day” in honour of his final newscast.
“In an environment where it’s hard nowadays to find people who just give you the news, the straight news, and they are authentic and they are reliable and they are sort of non-judgemental and they just give you the news—Ken Shaw stands out as someone who has done that for 40 years,” Tory said.
“He certainly deserves to be honoured by having a day proclaimed after him.”