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Hey trolls, here's the dirt on me.

Someone in cyberspace is out to get me, or more precisely, out to get my husband, through me. They are searching it seems to find any compromising dirt they can on me in order to use it against him to try to discredit his reporting on the BC election campaign.

Last week, I received 3rd party notification that a Freedom of Information Request had been received by the Information Access Operations (IAO — the new name of the BC Information and Privacy Office). The FOI request asked for  "any and all contracts including service agreements or service contracts awarded to Anne Mullens by any government ministry or agency including associated written correspondence or emails for the period January 1, 2002 to February 28, 2013."

IAO could not tell me who made the request, but it is likely one of the internet bloggers who has been spreading rumours about me for years now.

Since around 2002, a rumour has circulated on the internet that I am on the payroll of the BC Liberal government and that this makes my husband, Global BC television political commentator Keith Baldrey, biased in his job. Some sites say that I have received thousands upon thousands of dollars from this "political" job. I've been called a "biased bitch," a political party hack, and other terms.

Now that the election campaign is under way, someone is trying to prove through the FOI that I am indeed tainted in some way, and therefore Keith's reporting is tainted. It is really all about their hatred of Keith, not me, but they are using me, they hope, as collateral.

I give them credit, at least, that they are trying to find the truth, rather than just circulate the same old lies.

I am happy to set the record straight. In fact, I let IAO know that as far as I am concerned they can release every single record they find about me. I have nothing to hide.

(Anybody who reads my blog knows that!)

So, for the record now, anyone who cares:

I am a freelance journalist. I specialize in health care writing - for all sorts of clients. I also do a lot of "drama" stories for magazines (think "Drama in Real Life" for Reader's Digest International.) I do a lot of  travel, food, and outdoor adventure writing, too, what I consider the fun part of my job. While I write about healthcare issues and problems, it is the travel, food and outdoor adventure writing that keeps me healthy and sane.

For the last four years I have been managing editor of Boulevard Magazine, a monthly Victoria lifestyle magazine that was so all-consuming I had little time for anything else. I left that job at the end of March, 2013, although I am still leading special projects for the magazine.

I am coming back to freelance writing and I am in the process of starting my own health care communications company.  I will be looking for contract work in health care communications soon.

Way, way back (1982 to 1992) I was the medical reporter for the Vancouver Sun. I left that job when our first child was born. Then for 17 years I freelanced. During that time I wrote so much — mostly in the hours when the kids were in school — that it all blurs now.

But I do know that I wrote four of the special reports by the Provincial Health Officer. I wrote two of the BC Select Standing Committee (all party committee) Health Reports. I was a consultant for Hollander Analytical Services on a large Health Canada project on homecare. I wrote reports and materials for Health Canada, the Public Health Agency of Canada, the Public Health Association of Canada and the Public Health Association of BC. (The power of public health to improve population health is a passion of mine, particularly in the area of the social determinants of health.)

I assisted family doctors in BC, through the General Practice Services Committee, to get the word out about primary care reform to help support family doctors and their patients. (Good primary care is another passion of mine.)

All these jobs were non-partisan.

But I believe ONE job I did, more than a decade ago, would come up as being under the label of "Liberal Government." I helped prepare materials for a First Ministers conference, being held in BC, about the reorganization of BC's regional health authorities. As some might recall, BC around that time went from 54 regions, down to the current five health authorities. It was a massive restructuring. That contract was for $24,000 and it was extended for another $6,000. I don't believe I billed it all. I helped create all the information that explained the restructuring and why it was done to other provinces and their media.

I believe I may have explained that restructuring to Keith, too, and the principles of population health, good preventive health (get that mole checked!) and the need to support family doctors. But more often, at night when the kids were finally tucked in bed, we'd talk about the kids and their school assignments or who was picking up whom from what after school program. Or we'd talk about golf or the latest recipe we wanted to try (we both love to cook) and who would do the grocery shop (usually Keith — he loves to grocery shop.) Or the books we were reading, or an interesting magazine article we had just read — passing each other the latest New Yorker, Atlantic Monthly or New York Review of Books.

So that is about the extent of any conflict of interest.

Fill your boots, trolls.


Posted on Monday, April 22, 2013 at 05:41PM by Registered CommenterAnne | Comments5 Comments

Reader Comments (5)

Have been a big fan of Keiths for quite some time, may have to watch for your work as well in the future . You seem to be an excellent writer as well. Its OK to fend off trolls,carry on.
Steve Price
Town of Sidney
April 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSteve Price
As a northern girl and author who loves descriptive writing... I am a big fan of yours.

You know that you are big league when people have to resort to looking at you to deride your spouse!

Carry on, and... carry on, Anne!
April 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaila Yuile
Nice response. Trolls indeed.
April 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCraig McInnes
Anne is a first rate journalist, researcher, and writer. And I'm proud to say I spotted her abilities early, during my brief unlamented turn as city editor of the Sun, when I hired her.
April 23, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterVaughn Palmer
Which side are these attacks comming from? The left or the right?
May 16, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterbruce

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