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Pamela Wallin
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Pamela Wallin

Pamela Wallin (born 1953 in Wadena, Saskatchewan) is a Canadian television journalist and diplomat.

After obtaining a degree in psychology and political science from the University of Regina, she began her career as a social worker at Saskatchewan's Prince Albert Penitentiary. The following year, she began her career in journalism, joining CBC Radio's news division.

In 1979, she joined the Ottawa bureau of the Toronto Star. In 1981, she joined CTV and became cohost, with Norm Perry, of Canada AM. In 1985, CTV named her its Ottawa Bureau Chief. She later rejoined Canada AM, hosting alongside J.D. Roberts.

In 1992, the CBC hired Wallin in a highly publicized move. For many years, The National had been followed by a 40-minute nightly newsmagazine, hosted by Barbara Frum, called The Journal. However, as a result of Frum's death in February of 1992, the CBC wanted to revamp and reposition its entire approach to news programming.

In the fall of that year, Wallin and Peter Mansbridge debutted as the cohosts of Prime Time News. Instead of the old segregation of Mansbridge reading the news on The National, followed by Frum introducing documentary and current affairs features and interviewing newsmakers on The Journal, the new show featured Wallin and Mansbridge as equal hosts of the whole package. As well, the new show aired at 9 p.m., one hour earlier than the old National/Journal tandem.

Unfortunately, the show fared poorly in the ratings, and by 1993, had returned to its old format and time slot, with Mansbridge reading the news, followed by Wallin hosting a magazine segment which eventually took on the name The National Magazine.

In 1994, her home town of Wadena, Saskatchewan named its main street Pamela Wallin Drive in her honour.

In 1995, Wallin was replaced as host of The Magazine by Hana Gartner. Following her dismissal from CBC News, Wallin created her own production company, and launched a daily interview series called Pamela Wallin Live. Airing on CBC Newsworld (and, in some years, on the CBC's main network as well), Pamela Wallin Live was a highly successful series which featured Wallin interviewing newsmakers, celebrities and other interesting personalities in a manner similar to CNN's Larry King Live. Wallin was regarded as an excellent interviewer, and the show ran for four years before Wallin moved to the cable network TalkTV.

In 2000, Wallin hosted the Canadian edition of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. She was criticized by some observers for compromising her journalistic integrity, but noted in response that as an interviewer and television producer, she was no longer working as a journalist in the traditional sense of the word.

In 2001, Wallin was one of the organizers of the Canada Loves New York rally for Canadians to show their support after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. Also that year, she spoke publicly about her battle with colon cancer.

On June 25, 2002, Wallin's television career came to an end when Prime Minister Jean Chrétien appointed her as Canada's Consul General in New York City, her first diplomatic posting.

Wallin has also published two books, Since You Asked (1998) and Speaking of Success (2001), and has made cameo appearances on the Canadian comedy series Royal Canadian Air Farce and Corner Gas.