Rita Deverell

Rita Deverell

DEVERELL Rita (b. 1945)
Broadcaster, Journalist

Television broadcaster, theatre artist, academic, and social activist Rita Shelton Deverell was born in Houston, Texas in 1945. In 1967 she moved to Canada and in 1972 began her career in television as the producer of a children's program.

In 1974 Rita joined the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation as a host for the program 'Take 30'. She came to Saskatchewan as an actress on the Globe Theatre School Tour in 1971-72, was a tenured Professor and Acting Director of the University of Regina's School of Journalism, and later became one of the founders of the Canadian television network Vision TV. She was Head of Production and noted for wearing a flower in her hair when she hosted programs.

Rita Deverell served as news and current affairs director for the Aboriginal peoples Television Network from 2002 to 2005, mentoring her Aboriginal successor, and was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2005 for "pioneering innovation and creativity" and for her "unceasing drive for social justice."

Rita has a doctorate from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) at the University of Toronto, is the founding Chair of the Advisory Board of Canadian Multicultural Radio, has served as an adjudicator-at-large for the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, and is a board member of the Media Awareness Network.

In 2001-02 Rita was the University of Western Ontario's Reader's Digest Visiting Professor of Journalism, she was also a Visiting Scholar (with Neil Postman) in New York University's Department of Culture and Communication.

She is on the MacLean's Honour Roll of Outstanding Canadians, is a two time Gemini Award winner, is in the Canadian Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame, has been on the Board of the Obsidian Theatre Company in Toronto, was the first holder of the CanWest Global Fellowship at the University of Western Ontario in 2007, and Nancy's Chair in Women's Studies at Mount Saint Vincent University from 2009-2011.

Written with information
from Rita Deverell
Photo courtesy of Rita Deverell

Archival Collections (Finding Aids in PDF format)

89-21 - Personal and Professional Papers. 1972-1985

90-97 - Transcript and Clippings on Florence James. 1985-1987

2005-52 - Personal and Professional Papers. 1994-2005