Postmedia crime reporter Bolan honoured by peers for lifetime achievement
Kim Bolan, an investigative reporter who covers gangs and organized crime for Postmedia, has been honoured with the prestigious Canadian Journalism Foundation’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
CJF made the announcement Thursday, saying that the award was in recognition of Bolan’s fearless commitment to truth in the face of threats and intimidation.
“Her career reads like a fastpaced crime novel, filled with murders, massive drug busts, international terrorists, and death threats to a dogged, unstoppable heroine,” said Lou Clancy, visiting scholar of journalism outreach at University of Toronto’s Massey College and a member of the jury that selected Bolan.
Editor-in-chief of The Vancouver Sun and Vancouver Province Harold Munro said Bolan’s fearless pursuit of the truth has given readers incredible insights as she continues to expose the tragic reach of organized crime.
“At the same time she shows tremendous compassion towards the victims of crime, ensuring through her stories that they are not forgotten,” said Munro.
“This award is a tribute to Kim’s relentlessness and journalistic excellence.”
Bolan has worked at The Vancouver Sun for 36 years, and during that time she has covered some of the biggest criminal cases in Canadian history, including the 1985 Air India bombing.
The CJF notes how Bolan was placed under police protection while investigating the bombing and another time for threats received from criminal biker gangs. In addition to reporting, she blogs about her life covering crime on The Real Scoop.
Her work has taken her to wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Central America and to northern India to expose the roots of the extremism that led to the Air India bombing. She is the author of the award-winning book Loss of Faith: How the Air India Bombers Got Away with Murder. She is also a journalism instructor at Vancouver’s Langara College, where she teaches media and the law, and investigative reporting.
Bolan has won or been shortlisted for more than 35 provincial, national and international journalism honours, according to the CJF.
Former governor general Adrienne Clarkson, also a jury member, said with her integrity and investigative skills, Bolan always enlightened and informed.
“Kim Bolan has literally risked her life in the crime and investigative stories she has specialized in throughout her career. Surviving threats and menaces of physical harm, she boldly tackled the Air India crash story, persevering to help report over a long period until some truth emerged,” Clarkson said in a statement Thursday.
Bolan joins a distinguished group of CJF Lifetime Achievement Award winners including John Honderich, Peter Mansbridge, Jean Pelletier, Lloyd Robertson, Michel Auger, Peter Bregg, Jack Sigvaldason, Lise Bissonnette, Joe Schlesinger, Sally Armstrong, Knowlton Nash, June Callwood and Trina Mcqueen, among others.
Bolan will be honoured at the annual CJF Awards on Oct. 30 in Toronto at the Ritz-carlton.