George Lester Tuccaro
George Lester Tuccaro, public broadcaster, politician, 16th commissioner of NORTHWEST TERRITORIES, from 2010 to present (b at northern Alberta, 12 May 1950). George Tuccaro is a member of the Mikisew CREE First Nation of northern Alberta, and had a distinguished career in broadcasting before entering public service.
Early Career and Public Life
Tuccaro began his career as a broadcaster in 1971. As an Announcer-Operator with CBC North Radio in Yellowknife, NWT, Tuccaro was an integral part of reporting life in the north to a broader Canadian audience. In 1979 he joined the public service when he became a communications officer with the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs, fulfilling the role until 1981. Tuccaro then returned to broadcasting when he joined CBC North as a Coordinator of Aboriginal Languages Programming. Here, he worked to develop a stronger platform for the promotion of Aboriginal Languages in radio broadcasting, promoting and developing aboriginal language talent by recruiting them for SLAVEY, CHIPEWYAN and Dogrib language reports.
During his time with CBC Tuccaro produced influential documentary work. One program receiving international acclaim was a radio documentary on the rate of teen suicide in northern Canada. From 1990 to 1991 Tuccaro also served as the Coordinator of the Cultural Industries Program. In this role, he created a booking agency for northern performing artists in the Northwest Territories. He also hosted Trail's End, a CBC North Radio program, and was the anchor of Northbeat, the first daily current affairs television program in Canada's north until 2002.
In 2002 Tuccaro retired from public broadcasting and started his own company, GLT Communications, whose goal was to bring major events to the territory. Since its inception it has grown to include presentations on issues important to northern communities, including workshops on healthy lifestyles, grief and loss, and the psychological and social ramifications of the RESIDENTAL SCHOOLS system in Canada.
Tuccaro as Lieutenant Governor
On 12 May 2010, Tuccaro was appointed the 16th Commissioner of the Northwest Territories, succeeding Tony WHITFORD. Commissioners are federally appointed positions, and fulfill roles similar to that of a provincial lieutenant-governor.
George Tuccaro has been widely recognized for his contribution to public life and has also served in numerous volunteer capacities. He has been awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Gold Jubilee Medal and the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada Medal, and a National Aboriginal Achievement Award. He has also served on the Northwest Territories Arts Council, the Northwest Territories Legislative Assembly Cultural Enhancement Committee, as a Juno Awards juror and as a member of the VANOC 2010 Opening/Closing Ceremony Planning Committee.