People / Bob Hunter

Writer, journalist, politician, activist. Bob Hunter was born in St. Boniface, Manitoba in 1941. He began working as a journalist in the 1960s, primarily writing about contemporary counterculture and environmental issues, first at the Winnipeg Tribune and then at the Vancouver Sun. Hunter became involved with an anti-nuclear group, the Don’t Make A Wave Committee, in 1968. The group became famous when, on September 15, 1971, they sailed a rusty fishing boat they called “The Greenpeace” out to the coast of Amchitka, Alaska to protest America nuclear weapons testing. Their action resulted in a wave of public support and protest, closing the United States-Canadian boarder for the first time since 1812. Hunter re-christened the Don’t Make A Wave Committee, the Greenpeace Foundation in 1972; it would become Greenpeace International in 1979.

Hunter acted as President of the Greenpeace Foundation from 1973 to 1977, during which time he enlarged the organization’s mandate from solely an anti-nuclear focus to include other ecological issues. He was also an active supporter of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society from its inception in 1977 to his death in 2005. Hunter returned to his journalist roots in 1988, joining City TV and its sister station CP24 as an ecology specialist. He also had a recurrent spot on the popular morning show Breakfast Television, where he delivered satirical commentary on the daily news dressed in his bathrobe. In addition, Hunter was a long-time columnist for Toronto’s eye weekly, writing on environmental issues. Hunter briefly entered politics, surprising many by running (unsuccessfully) for the Ontario Liberal Party in the riding of the Beaches-East York in 2001. Hunter passed away in 2005.