Joe Duarte considers himself the voice of the sensible motorist, with his ability to spin a utility perspective on just about any vehicle available in today’s market.
He bases that viewpoint on a daily commute of 135 km, and often racks up over 800 km of driving on his weekly test vehicle. Joe doesn’t own a car, since “it would just be sitting in some company’s visitors parking, anyway”.
Joe’s test vehicles put in some heavy-duty taxiing on a weekly basis between schools, soccer practices, hockey games, skating parties and loading up family and friends for trips to the mall and the cinema. Just about the only time his vehicles don’t get overused is at vacation time, since he prefers to spend that time at home with his family.
Joe started writing about cars back in 1987, shortly after receiving his certificate in Journalism from Durham College in Oshawa. He had been hoping to apply his newly-found reporting skills to his love of film, after obtaining his B.A. in Fine Arts-Film Studies from the University of Waterloo in 1985, but somehow cars got in the way.
Shortly after starting his career, with a short-lived weekly tabloid Metroland publication, he was recruited to become the editor of World of Wheels magazine (at the time, Canada’s only year-round magazine for auto-enthusiasts). He joined World of Wheels in 1988 and is still counted as its longest-serving editor, leaving in 1996 to form an upscale lifestyle quarterly that didn’t make it to a second year of production.
At World of Wheels, Joe guided the magazine to three magazine design and layout awards, as recognized by the Automobile Journalists’ Association of Canada (AJAC). Joe has also headed Canadian Tire’s Auto Club magazine – Autoroute – and written articles for several automotive, business and lifestyle publications. He started writing a bi-weekly column on family vehicles for the Toronto Sun in 1998, and joined the staff at Autonet in 2000, as content manager.
When he’s not behind the wheel, Joe can be found racking up kilometers on his running shoes. He resurrected his running career in June 2004, after a 25-year hiatus and in the process probably saved his knees, as shoes evolved technologically. He is in training for the 2013 New York City Marathon, which will take place on his 53rd birthday.