Lisa Balfour Bowen is a bilingual former Canadian journalist, who is best known for her political correspondence in Quebec. She has had a 35 year career, having been published in The Globe and Mail, The Toronto Star, The Toronto Sun, The Gazette, Montreal Star, Maclean’s, Canadian Art, and others.
Balfour Bowen was born in Hamilton, ON, and studied at the University of Toronto, the Sorbonne, and Harvard. One of the most notable periods in her career was during the 1960s when she reported on political and social issues facing Quebec in the defunct Montreal Star. She was then appointed political correspondent in Quebec City’s National Assembly, making her the first female anglophone political correspondent appointed to this position. Due to her strong belief in supporting bilingualism, she worked as a bilingual policy adviser to the Government of Ontario’s Federal-Provincial Affairs Secretariat under Premiers John Robarts and Bill Davis.
Her philanthropic work has also been great and far reaching. She helped found French for the Future, and is a former director of the Toronto French School and the Alliance Française de Toronto. Balfour Bowen has had a great impact in the Toronto Arts community, helping to found and/or establish the Toronto Arts Awards, Tarragon Theatre, and the Friends of the Library, Trinity College.
Awards and honoraries she has received:
- Ordre de la Pléiade (2001)
- Ordre du Mérite Francophile (2001)
- Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal (2002)
- Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques (2004)
- Honorary Doctorate, Laurentian University (2008)
- Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal (2012)
- Senior Fellow of Massey College (2012)
- Honorary Doctorate, Université Sainte-Anne (2015)