Born and raised in St. John’s, Nfld., Nix Wadden is a graduate of St. Bonaventure’s College in St. John’s, N.L., studied at Memorial University of Newfoundland and is a B.A. graduate of St. Francis Xavier University, N.S.

He worked as a writer, reporter and editor in Newfoundland news media between 1952 and 1966. He served briefly at the Daily News and Telegram newspapers, but worked primarily in radio and television news. After three years with Harvey’s News, which supplied major news programs broadcast on VOCM, he set up and directed that station’s first newsroom operation in 1957. He later took on senior radio and TV news editor duties at CJON, forerunner of today’s NTV and OZ-FM, also writing news features and a business column for the Newfoundland Herald. He was President of the Newfoundland Press Club 1959-61.

Nix moved to Ottawa in 1966 as an Information Officer with the Federal Department of Fisheries, rising to senior communications and public affairs posts in Fisheries and Oceans, Environment and Transport departments and the Federal Communications Council, of which he was Executive Director. His community activities included service as national chairman of the Government Section and President of the Ottawa Chapter of the Canadian Public Relations Society, Director of the Information Services Institute and member of the National Press Club. He also handled communications for the Ottawa Folk Festival. As a freelance writer, Nix has contributed to such publications as the Newfoundland Quarterly, Camera Canada, Downhome magazine, Fifty Plus Magazine, the St. John’s Telegram and the Ottawa Citizen.

An active amateur photographer, specializing in production of audio-visual shows, he was for ten years newsletter editor for Ottawa’s 300 member RA Photo Club, and served as its first communications chairman. He established a long-running series of exhibits by Ottawa photographers presented at the National Press Club.

Nix is author of three books: Yesterday’s News: Radio and TV Reporting in the Smallwood Era, an account of his Newfoundland journalistic career published in 2008; Gower Street, a 2015 memoir of growing up in St. John’s during the depression, the Second World War and the early years of Newfoundland’s emergence as Canada’s 10th province; and The Waddens: A Family History, published in 2019, tracing ancestors through Newfoundland, Ireland and their Norman and Flemish forebears, while following Wadden relatives spread across Canada and the United States.

He is married to the former Madeline Roche of St. John’s and they have two children, Dianne in Ottawa and Ron in Toronto.

3 thoughts on “Biography

  1. Ed Coady

    Hi Nix
    Just wanted to introduce myself (again haha) as our paths crossed in the past. I’m Ed Coady (not the CBC Ed Coady). You and I worked together in the CJON newsroom back in the 60s. I went there from the VOCM newsroom in the mid sixties. I worked for several years at the old Daily News new room when Edsel Bonnell ran the place and subsequently Bill Callahan. I also tried my hand in newspaper publishing when I joined Tom Murphy in trying our hand in putting out the Newfoundland and Labrador Express. That was around the time that Frank Moore’s and the PCs took over the provincial government.
    I too left the provicial news reporting scene in the 70s and took a public affairs position with the federal Department of Regional Economic Expansion in St. John’s. I retired from the federal public service back in 2004.
    I did read your book Yesterday’s News (Ed Bonnell put me onto it ) and enjoyed it. Congratulations,
    I also had an extensive stamp collection back in the 50swhich mysterically disappeared.
    Hope you receive these musings and enjoy the contact.
    Ed Coady
    Torbay NL

    1. Nix Post author

      Hi Ed – I don’t think I replied to your comment and if so I apologize. I have not paid much attention to the blog in recent months but hope to get back into it. Yes indeed I remember you and wondered whether you were the same as your CBC namesake. Guess you did like I did and went over to the dark side, joining the feds.
      Glad you liked my book Yesterday’s News. You might look out for my second book Gower Street though I am not sure if it is still available.
      Have you seen Ed Bonnell lately. We have not been in touch for a long while. I was sorry to hear that his wife died. Do you know his current address or e mail?
      Thanks for getting in touch.


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