This journalism personage was born on 14 October 1925 in Tanjung Malim, Perak. He was educated at the Malay College Kuala Kangsar (MCKK), Perak in 1939, but he had to leave school during the outbreak of the Second World War.
Tan Sri Haji Mazlan started his career as an assistant at the Yahaya Ariff & Sons Bookshop in Kuala Kangsar. From here onwards, his interest in journalism began to grow in which subsequently, he wrote to Utusan Melayu in Singapore. He was hired as a translator in Utusan Melayu in June 1950. At that point in time, the Chief Editor was Tan Sri A.Samad Ismail, the person responsible for the proper technique of news reporting. Shortly upon his employment there, the Natrah incident took place, where a girl of Dutch descent who had been brought up by a Muslim family was reclaimed by her biological family. He was given the responsibility to interview Natrah, who at that time was brought to a church and was said to have returned to the Christian faith. This news made Utusan Melayu headlines.
Aside from working in Utusan Melayu, Tan Sri Haji Mazlan made use of his bilingual abilities -Malay and English, by becoming moonlighting as a part-time reporter, rewriting news in English for the Singapore Free Press(later known as the Malay Mail).
However, Tan Sri Haji Mazlan could had the opportunity to work for only four months in Utusan Melayu as he was offered the post of broadcast journalist at the Voice of America in New York. In 1953, he returned home and rejoined Utusan Melayu before joining Berita Harian as editor five years later. The contents of Berita Harian, in which prior to that were merely translations of the New Straits Times, began to change. As a translator and reporter, once again, he came under the tutelage of Tan Sri A.Samad Ismail.
In February 1973 to 1982, he returned to Utusan Melayu as Chief Editor and subsequently was appointed as the Managing Director from 1983 to1987. He became the Editorial Consultant of the New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd. in 2000 until September 2001. He also had a regular column in several newspapers such as Mingguan Malaysia, The Sun, New Straits Times and Asiaweek magazine and was a Guest Writer at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.
In addition, he was actively involved in various organisations and clubs. Among them, he was the Chairman of the Malaysian Press Institute (1989-2003), Board Member of World Enterprise Institute (2000), Chairman of the Press Foundation of Asia(1999), and Chairman of the Afro-Asian People's Solidarity Organisation of Malaysia and others.
In recognition of his services and contributions, he was conferred several awards and medals by the Federal and State Governments, including the Ahli Mangku Negara (1966), Johan Setia Mahkota(1975), Johan Mangku Negara (1980), Setia Diraja Kedah (1982), Setia Mahkota Pahang (1982), Dato' Paduka Mahkota Perak, which carries the title of Dato' (1993) and Panglima Setia Mahkota (2005). In addition, Tan Sri Haji Mazlan was awarded the ASEAN Award (1987), National Outstanding Journalist Award by the Association of Malay Journalists' of Malaysia (1996), National Journalist Personage by the Malaysian Press Institute (2001) and Honorary Doctor of Philosophy by the Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (2005).
Tokoh Majlis Pengkisahan Sejarah Media Massa ‘Media-Pemangkin Kemerdekaan'
16 Ogos 2007
Arkib Negara Malaysia