(October 17, 1922 - February 21, 2012)
It may seem strange to honour a bureaucrat, but this man served his country with a passion for the artistic talents of its people, and the vision to lead the way to a future which promised a share in it.
In 1949 he began his career at the National Film Board, and in 1968 he became the first chairman of the CRTC (Canadian Radio and Television Committee). Juneau caused much controversy by bringing in Canadian content rules. A law was passed forcing Canadian radio stations to play 30% Canadian content during peak hours of air play. At the time there were very few Canadian performers who had recordings available. Most of our talent had to venture to the larger audiences of the U.S. to find fame. So it was an awful lot of Anne Murray, Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, and Gordon Lightfoot until radio hosts were able to find new talent to draw from.
It was a case of supply meeting demand. Since radio needed more Canadian music, many new record producers sprang up looking for new singers and songwriters and bands to promote. Is it any wonder then that Pierre Juneau is so honoured today by the Canadian music industry? Canada's equivalent of the Grammy Award is named the Juno (a simplified spelling of his name). In 1971 he was honoured as Canadian Music industry Man of the Year and given his own Juno Award. He went on to become the head of the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) from 1982 to 1989 where he increased Canadian content to 95% which also helped to encourage new Canadian production companies.
Here is a web page by the Canadian Songwriters Virtual Hall of Fame.
The CBC's tribute: