Featured journalist: Barbara Turnbull

We'll kick off the week by featuring Barbara Turnbull, a truly inspiring life reporter with the Toronto Star. In addition to writing news stories and features for the Star, Turnbull has established a beat in organ and tissue donation and transplantation. In Turnbull's autobiography "Looking in the Mirror," she revealed the story behind the story of the shooting that paralyzed her in 1983. She also created The Barbara Turnbull Foundation for Spinal Cord Research, devoting the royalties of her book and all speaking fees to research.

Turnbull actually got her start at the Star as a general assignment reporter right after graduation: "I was fortunate to begin my career at Canada's largest daily. I hope to be there till the end," she writes. In her opinion, journalism's purpose is to "inform the public, serve society, give a voice to the voiceless, open doors for the powerless, break down bureaucracy, [and] meet folks." As for aspiring journalists, Turnbull recommends, "Read lots, write every day and never be afraid to knock on a door."

Be sure to check out Turnbull's portfolio here (and especially her articles on the organ and tissue donation awareness, one example of which is "Organ transplants: How five patients are faring two years later."

Remember: If you also want to be featured here, you should 1) set up your own journalist portfolio 2) get verified and 3) let us know by emailing Kirsten.

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