OTTAWA — John Ibbitson has been awarded the 2016 Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing.
The Ottawa-based journalist won the $25,000 prize for “Stephen Harper” (Signal/McClelland & Stewart) a biography on the former Conservative prime minister.
The award was handed out at the annual Politics and the Pen Gala held at the Fairmont Chateau Laurier in Ottawa on Wednesday night.
The other finalists for this year’s prize were each awarded $2,500.
— Greg Donaghy for “Grit: The Life and Politics of Paul Martin Sr.” (UBC Press)
— Norman Hillmer for “O.D. Skelton: A Portrait of Canadian Ambition” (University of Toronto Press)
— Sheila Watt-Cloutier for “The Right to Be Cold: One Woman’s Story of Protecting Her Culture, the Arctic, and the Whole Planet” (Allen Lane)
— Andrew Nikiforuk for “Slick Water: Fracking and One Insider’s Stand Against the World’s Most Powerful Industry” (Greystone Books)
Ibbitson’s book was chosen by jurors Tim Cook, Canadian military historian; Robyn Doolittle, author and Globe and Mail journalist; and Antonia Maioni, McGill University professor and political commentator.
The prize was established in honour of the late Windsor, Ont., MP Shaughnessy Cohen.
The Writers’ Trust of Canada established the award in her name to recognize authors of non-fiction works that capture a subject of Canadian political interest.
Now into its 16th year, the prize is sponsored by Aimia and supported by the Politics and the Pen Gala.