Derek J Taylor
Derek Taylor grew up amid the coal-fields of Nottinghamshire, in a house just round the corner from where D.H.Lawrence had lived. Derek was the first in his family to go to university, and at Oxford he read Law and History. He also discovered journalism there, and became Editor of the Univerity newspaper. That led to a job with Independent Television News.
As a TV correspondent, he reported from Northern Ireland, Rome, the Middle East, South Africa and the United States, where he was based in Washington D.C. As ITN’s first Middle East correspondent, he covered five wars, and spent seven months in Iran during the Islamic revolution. For three of those months, he was on assignment for ABC News of America after the Iranian authorities had expelled all US passport-holders (a time and place portrayed in the film Argo). During this period, his daily reports for ABC’s Nightline were the only Tehran-based TV coverage of the American hostage crisis to reach U.S. viewers.
'I discovered it's sometimes wise to be frightened,' Derek confesses.
He went on to work for the BBC before becoming Chief Executive of the world’s biggest TV news agency owned by The Associated Press of America.
He now lives with his wife, Maggie in the Cotswolds in the heart of the English countryside, where he pursues his twin passions of history and writing. He has one son, Dan, a philosophy lecturer.
Christ Church, Oxford
ITN trainee early '70s
Iran: reporting the Islamic revolution 1980
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