Hugh McCullum (1931 – 2008) was the son of an Anglican priest and born and raised in the Yukon.
A graduate of McGill University, he began his career with the Montreal Herald, then moved on to the Kingston Whig-Standard, the Regina Leader-Post, and the former Toronto Telegram.
Mr. McCullum was named editor/publisher of The United Church Observer in 1980. He was not only the first layperson appointed as editor, he was also the first editor who came from outside The United Church. McCullum had also been editor of the national newspaper Canadian Churchman (predecessor to the Anglican Journal) for the Anglican Church of Canada from 1968-75.
As editor of The Observer, McCullum presided over the magazine’s transition from an arm of the General Council to an independently incorporated publication with full editorial autonomy. While editor of the Observer he travelled extensively, reporting on church-backed struggles for justice in Canada’s North, in Central America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia. McCullum won dozens of church press awards and was a three-time National Magazine Awards winner. During his time at The Observer, he also hosted CBC TV’s Meeting Place, from 1984 to 1989.
McCullum’s books and publications reflected his belief that the church needs to be a voice of the marginalized: Africa’s Broken Heart (2007), The Angels Have Left Us (2005) and Radical Compassion (2004), a biography of Archbishop Ted Scott, former primate of the Anglican Church of Canada.
McCullum moved to Zimbabwe in 1990 and worked on numerous ecumenical projects including training programs for African journalists.
McCullum returned to his family in Canada in 2002. At the time of his death, he was working with Aboriginal groups on issues relating to northern resource development.