Year Born: 1939
Year of Induction: 2009
Member of CAB Hall of Fame
Parsons, Anthony “Tony” (1939- )
Tony Parsons was born Anthony Parsonage in Gosport, England in 1939, the son of an RAF Officer and an Italian mother. He was educated in various British schools until he was nine, when in 1948 his family decided to move to Canada. His schooling continued in Feversham, Kitchener, Sarnia and Toronto, Ontario where he studied Radio and Television Arts at Ryerson Institute of Technology.
His schooling was interrupted when, at the age of seventeen, he was hired to be a radio disc jockey at CJCS in Stratford. Ontario. From Stratford he moved in quick succession to CHOK Sarnia, CJOY in Guelph and on to CHML in Hamilton, where he made the transition from DJ to news reporter. By this time he had shortened his surname to Parsons. His career then took him to Toronto for a short stay at CHUM and eventually to his first television job as reporter/anchor with CFTO-TV, where he anchored the late evening news.
In 1975, after eight years at the Baton owned station, he took a posting in Vancouver as the West Coast correspondent for CTV National News. When he was offered the six o’clock anchor assignment at BCTV (then a CTV affiliate, but now known as Global BC), he jumped at the opportunity and occupied the anchor desk there during the supper hour for 26 years. In 1989, Parsons was made news director for BCTV, and was later named Vice-President, News.
Parsons retired from Global at the end of 2009, but on January 28th 2010 it was reported that he was not only joining CHEK-TV in Victoria as its news anchor, but was making a personal investment in the employee-owned station.
During his years in Vancouver, Parsons was the recipient of various awards, including being named Italian Man of the Year by the Brotherhood Interfaith Society in 2002, receiving the Bruce Hutchinson Lifetime Achievement Award from the Jack Webster Foundation in 2004, and being awarded the Queen’s 50th Anniversary Commemorative Gold Medal for outstanding service in the community as a journalist. He had also been named Broadcaster of the Year by BCAB, and had also received the prestigious RTNDA Presidents Award.
Over the years, Tony donated his time to a number of charitable organizations including the Salvation Army, Vision 20-21, the Mel Zajac Foundation and Swim B.C.
Tony Parsons was inducted into the CAB Hall of Fame in November 2009.
On April 12th 2010, it was reported that Parsons would co-anchor CBUT’s evening newscast, CBC News: Vancouver, replacing co-anchor Ian Hanomansing. Parsons would continue to host the 10 PM newscast for CHEK-TV.
On June 12th 2012 Tony did his final 10 pm newscast for CHEK-TV, but continued to be seen on CHEK-TV on the CBC 6 pm newscast from Vancouver. In November 2013, the CBC announced that Tony would be retiring on the expiry of his contract in December; his last newscast for the Corporation would be on December 20th 2013.
Written by Pip Wedge – November, 2013