Philip Lee is a passionate defender of rivers and the people who love them. A journalist, teacher, father and grandfather, he began his career as an investigative reporter on Canada’s east coast. For the past two decades, Lee has taught journalism, communications, and great books at St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick, while continuing to write investigative series, essays and feature stories for a variety of media.

Lee’s first book, Home Pool: The Fight to Save the Atlantic Salmon, told the story of the decline of a species from New Brunswick, Quebec, Iceland and Scotland and was honoured by the Canadian Association of Journalists as the nation’s best investigative work. Lee’s biography of former New Brunswick premier Frank McKenna, Frank: The Life and Politics of Frank McKenna, was a national best seller. His exploration of love and families, Bittersweet: Confessions of a Twice-Married Man, was long-listed for the BC Award for Non-Fiction.

As founding Director of the Journalism program at St. Thomas, Lee created successful academic programs in journalism, communications, public policy and helped launch the careers of countless young Canadian journalists. He also developed the Dalton Camp lecture series, broadcast annually by CBC’s Ideas programme since 2002. Lee has edited a published collection of essays from the Camp Lecture called The Next Big Thing.

Lee spends as much time as he is able following the currents of rivers with his favourite travelling companions – his partner Deb Nobes, their daughter Lucy, and an impulsive terrier who has a habit of falling overboard when least expected.


Reading more like a firsthand account of life on the front lines of love than a self-help digest or philosophical chronicling of a mid-life crisis - and implying that we only become disillusioned because we have illusions to begin with - Bittersweet is an honest and moving account of one man’s struggle to step away from a castle made of sand to rebuild upon the rock of truth.
— Stephen Clare, the Globe and Mail, on Bittersweet.