Peter Herrndorf was born in Amsterdam and grew up in Winnipeg. After completing degrees in political science and in English at the University of Manitoba, he went on to earn a law degree from Dalhousie University and a master’s degree in administration at the Harvard Business School. He began his career as an editor and reporter in the CBC television newsroom, rising to become head of TV Current Affairs Programming, where he played a pivotal role in the development and broadcasting of network-wide programming and documentaries. . He later became Vice-President and General Manager of CBC’s English Language Radio and Television Networks. Under his leadership, the CBC introduced the highly acclaimed public affairs program, “The Journal”.
In 1992, Mr. Herrndorf became Chairman and CEO of TVOntario, a role in which he served for three terms. In 1999, he began his role as President and CEO of the National Arts Centre in Ottawa. After 18 years at the helm of one of Canada’s most important performing arts organizations, he left his role at the NAC in June 2018.
Over the course of his career, Mr. Herrndorf has been very active in a wide range of community and industry activities. He is the Founding President of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Foundation, and is a Past President of the Association for Tele-Education in Canada. In 1995, Prime Minister Jean Chrétien appointed him to a three-member committee that would review the mandates of the National Film Board, Telefilm Canada and the CBC.
Among his many current commitments, Mr. Herrndorf serves on the Board of directors of Luminato, Toronto’s Festival of Arts, Culture and Creativity; the Steering Committee for the Canadian Arts Summit; the Honorary Committee of the Power of the Arts National Forum; and the Honorary Leaders Council of the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival in Vancouver.