James Naughtie was born and brought up in Milltown of Rothiemay, near Huntly, Aberdeenshire, Scotland. He was educated at Keith Grammar School, the University of Aberdeen and then Syracuse University in New York. He is a Fellow of the British-American Project.
He began his career in journalism in 1975 at the Aberdeen Press & Journal, moving to the London offices of The Scotsman in 1977. The following year he joined the paper's Westminster staff, and became its Chief Political Correspondent. In 1981, he worked for The Washington Post as the Laurence Stern fellow on its national staff. Naughtie joined The Guardian in 1984, and became its Chief Political Correspondent in 1985.
In 1986, he moved into radio journalism, presenting The Week In Westminster, and in 1988 he joined The World At One. He has also made several radio documentaries and series, and has written three books, Playing the Palace: A Westminster Collection, The Rivals: The Intimate Story of a Political Marriage, and The Accidental American: Tony Blair and the Presidency.
Naughtie is married to Eleanor Updale, author of the award-winning Montmorency books and a former producer of The World at One. They have three children.
It is also notable that Naughtie often manages to insert his personal and professional interest in opera into the programme. In December 2005 in a week when UK politics were consumed by two party leadership contests, Naughtie was covering the re-opening of La Scala.
Interview: British journalist James Naughtie talks about the relationship between President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair
Nov 12, 2004; NOAH ADAMS NPR Special 11-12-2004 Interview: British journalist James Naughtie talks about the relationship between President...