|Use your mouse
pointer to touch a date on the
calendar to the left and see which Famous
Canadian Woman has a
birthday on that date.
Rosalie Silberman Abella. née
Born July 1, 1946, Stuttgart, Germany. Rosalie was actually born in a
displaced persons camp, one of several such camps that sprang up
after World War ll. Rosalie
and her family came to Canada in 1950 as refugees. December 8, 1968
she married Irving Martin Abella the the couple have two sons. She completed her education as a lawyer
in 1970 at the University of Toronto and was called to the Bar in
1972. She is She became a Justice, Ontario Court of Appeal. A Human Rights activist, she was
also the Commissioner of the Royal Commission on Equity in Employment.
She is considered one of Canada's foremost experts on human rights
law and has taught at McGill Law School in Montreal.
August 30, 2004 she was appointed a Justice of the Supreme
Court of Canada to serve until 2021. She was named Global
Jurist of the year for 2016 by Northwestern's Pritzker School of
La's Centre for International Human Rights. (2018)
Born July 1, 1942 Montreal, Quebec. She trained at the Quebec
Conservatory of Dramatic Art and
began her acting career in French Canadian theater makin her debut in
1962. During a trip to
Europe she was 'noticed' by French director Alain Resnais who placed
her in several of his films. Returning to Canada she married film
director Paul Almond in 1967.The couple had one son. Her
husband placed her in three films including Isabel in 1968
and the Act of the Heart in 1970 which won the Canadian Film
Award for Best Actress. She has received
recognition for her dramatic talents with a Golden Globe Award for
Best Actress in a Motion Picture (Drama) and an Oscar nomination for the role in
Anne of a Thousand Days.
released in 1969. In
1973 she again won Best Actress from the Canadian Film Awards for
her role in Claude Jutra's Kamouraska. Divorced in 1973 the
couple worked again in Final Assignment in 1980 and The
Dance Goes On in 1991. She won a Genie Award in 1980 as Best
supporting Actress and in 1981 for Performance by an Actress in a
leading role which she earned again in 1989, 1994, and1998.
She acted in numerous films in the 1970's and early 1980's with top
male stars of Hollywood. After a long departure she returned to
Quebec to be in two films by Michael Brault. She has continued to
work mainly in independent films. In 2010 she earned the Best
Performance by a Female from the Canadian Comedy Awards for The
Trotsky. In 2013 The Canadian Screen Awards honoured her with
Performance by and Actress in a Leading Role in Still Mine.
Anderson. Born July 1, 1967 Ladysmith, British Columbia. Pamela was an official. Canadian Centennial baby. Sadly she was repeatedly
sexually abused by her baby sitter and raped when she was 12 only to be
followed by a gang-rape by her boyfriend and his friends when she was just
14.She became a vegetarian in hr teens when she saw her father cleaning an
animal he had hunted. In 1988 she moved to Vancouver, British Columbia to work as a
fitness instructor. Spotted at a football game she was hired by
Labatt's Brewing Company as a spokes model In October 1989 she appeared on
the cover of Playboy magazine and moved to Los Angeles to further her
career as a model. She married muscien Tommy Lee on February 19, 1995 and
took the professional name Pamela Anderson Lee until their divorce in 1998.
The couple had two sons. February 1998 she was Playboy's Playmate of
the Month and appeared in the magazines centerfold. After augmenting her
bust size she would appear in Playboy numerous times in the 1990's and
2000's including a nude pose in January 2016. Pamela has been involved
with movies and been a popular doing “guest appearances “ on popular TV programs.
In 2005 as spokesperson for MAC Cosmetics, MAC AIDS Fund she raised money
internationally for AIDS victims. She has also servd as the celebrity
spokesperson for the American Liver Foundation. She had two broken
engagements before marrying Kid Rock (Robert J. Ritchie in 2006. but by
November she had sued for divorce. She married film Producer Rick Solomon
but they parted two months later and yet remarried him only to divorce him
again in 2015. She is a vegan and staunch advocate of animal rights. In
April 2009 she wrote Vladimir Putin, The Russian President to thank him for
banning the slaughter of baby seals. A second letter in 2015 asked him to
save the whales and even traveled to Russia to share thoughts on endangered
species meeting with Kremlin officials that year and again in 2016. December
2015 she became a Board member of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. In
2018 she starred in a video
Lau. Born July 2, 1971 Vancouver, British Columbia. This author published her 1st work while still a teenager! At
14 she left and abusive life at home a lived on the streets of
Vancouver but continued to submit poems to journals.
In 1989 she recorded her experiences as a street kid in a best selling
work, Runaway: Diary of a Street Kid. The book was made into a movie for
the CBC. In 1992 she became the youngest poet to be nominated for a Governor
General's Award. Her novel Other Women was published in 1995 and has been
translated into 11 languages. She has won four Western
Magazine Awards and a National Magazine Award. She has earned
an Air Canada Award, the Vantage Women of Originality Award and the
Mayor's Arts Award. She as been writer-in-residence at the
University of British Columbia, Kwatlen University, and Vancouver
Community College. She also was Distinguished Visiting Writer at the
University of Calgary. She is a manuscript consultant win the
Writing and Publishing Program at Simon Fraser University. In 2011
she was named as poet laureate for Vancouver. She continues to
publish poems, short stories and books.
Born July 3, 1927 Montreal, Quebec. Died December 12, 2005 Paris, France. Thérèse
went to study theatre in Paris, France in 1946. That same year she published
Les Sables du rêve.
Returning to Montreal she worked as a comedian and singer, appearing on
radio and television. In 1959 she was back to Paris to write. Here she
continued radio work interviewing for Radio Canada. She also worked as a
professional astrologer She married artist Fernand Leduc. An author, poet and a painter she is best remembered for her
memoirs that broke the silence of the life of women in the belle province of Quebec.
She would sign the 1948 Refus Global (Total Refusal), the manifesto that denounced
the conservative and church-dominated values that held Quebec in a straight jacket.
The manifesto was signed by a small group of artistes was a passionate statement
affirming the link between artistic creation and social transformation.
Claude. née Bélanger. Born July
3,1939 Montreal, Quebec. As a youth Renée studied piano at
Ecole de musique Vincent-d'Indy. She also studied dramatic arts and voice.
In 1955, while still just a teen she made her debut on CKVL in Verdun,
Quebec. She has performed in the US, France, Belgium,
Poland, USSR, Japan just to name a few countries. In 1963 she produced her 1st album
and each successive year she produced albums 2,3,& 4. In 1965 she earned
Stéphane Venne et
prix de la meilleure chanson de l'année
(best song of the year). In 1967 she signed a
contract with Columbia records but switched to Barclay in 1969 until 1974.
By 1976 she had produced 14 successful albums. In 1980 she made her stage
debut in a production of songs, monologues and poems in homage to her
1986 saw yet another album. In 1990
she was appearing on television and two years later she was back to the
stage and doing films.
Boys. Born July 4, 1951
Toronto, Ontario. For 10
years from 1966 to 1977 this diver won 34 Canadian championships in springboard
and platform competition.
She holds gold medals from 1966, 1970, 1974 and 1978. Commonwealth
Games and was a member of three Canadian Olympic teams.
In 1968 she won two silver and a bonze medal at the Pan American
Games in 1967 and 1971. She
is a member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. She was
inducted into the Ontario Sports Hall of Fame in 2005 and was named
a Member of the Order of Canada in 2015. Beverly lived in Vancouver,
British Columbia and is active as a coach and judge with BC Diving.
Riva Bellan. Born July 5,1952
Susan earned BA from the University of Manitoba in 1973 and the following
year a second BA from McGill University, Montreal. An import and retail
executive she showed promise of achievement early in life
in music at the Winnipeg Music Festival 1968. She would work in the field of
small business and enterprise and use her knowledge and experience to write
the book: Small Business and the Big Banks.published
in 1995. Combining
an interest in world crafts where she is the owner/manager of Frida Craft Stores.
She is also a mother of a family of three. (2018)
Born July 5,1907 Toronto, Ontario. Died December 31, 1979 Toronto, Ontario. At 14 when she was in
grade 8, she quit school and went to work
in the Toronto garment district in order to help support her family. She played on the company baseball, basketball, and track and field teams.
In 1927 she won the 220 yards at the National Championships. At the 1928
Olympic trials in Halifax, Nova Scotia she showed her sport talents. She teamed with Bobbie Rosenfeld
(1904-1969), Myrtle Cook (1902-1985) and Jane Bell
(1910-1998) to win the gold medal in the 400m relay at the 1928 Olympic games, the1st games
that allowed women to compete. The Canadian women team of 1928 were known as the
Matchless Six. Ethel also won the bronze medal in the 100m sprint
at the same games. Ethel retired from
competition in 1929 after winning the Ontario Championships. She is a
member of the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame.
Born July 6, 1908 Chelsey, Ontario. Died September
6, 1986 Toronto, Ontario. Jeanne earned he BA at the University of
Toronto and her PhD in 1935. In 1938 she married zoology professor
Kenneth Fisher. Jeanne became the 1st woman appointed professor
in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Toronto in
1964. She was president of the Royal Canadian Institute in 1980. She
has received honours for her scientific achievements and has promoted
the role of women within her field. Jean created the Canadian
Society for Molecular Biosciences Equal Opportunity Committee.
The Canadian Society for Molecular Biosciences, University of
Toronto presents every second year to a eminent Canadian woman to
receive the Jeanne Manery Fisher Memorial Lectureship.
July 6, 1914 Halifax, Nova Scotia . Died February 7, 1965. New York,
U.S.A. Viola was a successful Halifax beautician and businesswoman
working with her husband Jack Desmond, who was a barber. She would
become embroiled in one of the most publicized incidents of racial
discrimination in Canadian history. On November 8, 1946, while
visiting New Glasgow, Nova Scotia she attended a movie at the
Roseland Theatre. She chose to sit downstairs in the racially
segregated theatre instead of upstairs in the balcony where Blacks
were forced to sit. She was arrested and thrown into jail overnight.
She had refused to pay the once cent amusement tax difference
charged to clients sitting downstairs instead of the balcony. She
refused to pay more than white customers at the show. At trial,
where she had no counsel, she was sentenced to a fine of $20.00.
Later she, and newspaper editor Carrie Best would encourage a lobby
group to force the Nova Scotia government to finally repeal the law
of segregation in 1954. After her trial she closed her shop and
moved to Montreal where she enrolled in a business college. In 2000,
Desmond and other Canadian civil rights activists were the subject
Board of Canada documentary Journey to Justice.
On April 14, 2010, the
Governor of Nova Scotia,
Prerogative and granted Desmond a
the 1st such to be granted in Canada. The government of Nova Scotia
also apologized to her family.
Cape Breton University has a Viola Desmond Chair for Social
2018 Viola Desmond IS the 1st non royal women to appear solo on
a Canadian monetary bill, the ten dollar bill.
July 6, 1943
Montreal, Quebec. This actor
has appeared in numerous movies since she began her career in 1965 in the
role of Bronwyn apposite Charleton Heston in The War Lord and James
Steward in Shenandoah. That year she was nominated for a Golden Globe Award
for Best New Star of the Year - Actress. She married three
times.1966 to 1975 she married Michael Tolan and the couple had a daughter.
In 1972 to 1975 she was married to Ron Waranch. In 1980 to 1983 she was
married to Alan Horowitz; Maternity leave caused a crimp in her
career but she maintained her career with numerous guest appearances with
day time drama in TV series such as Days
of Our Lives and General Hospital
and with prime time evening
television shows such as NYPD
Blue, Monk, and
Without a Trace. In 2003 she
was elected to the Board of Directors of the Screen Actor's Guild. (2018)
Born July 7, 1974 Winnipeg, Manitoba. As a youth she enjoyed the
sports of volleyball and curling. She decided to continue in the
sport of curling while obtaining a degree as a lawyer from the
University of Manitoba and working as a Corporate lawyer. She
married curler Brent Laing (1978- ) and the couple have
two daughters. The couple settled in Shanty Bay, Ontario. In 1991
she was a member of team that won the Manitoba Games Silver medal.
By 1994 she was a Canadian Junior Team Champion. In 2002 she won the
Manitoba Women’s Provincial Championships and went on to win the
Canadian National Tournament of Hearts in 2002 and 2005. In 2006 she
won the inaugural World Curling Tour Players Championship. She was
also busy in 2008 winning the Tournament of Hearst and once again
the World Championship as skip of her team. In the Winter Olympics,
Sochi Japan she took gold and became the 1st female skip to go
through the Games undefeated and she and her team were the 1st
Manitoba based curling team to win Olympic Gold. Jennifer has wont
the National Championships six time up to 2018 the Manitoba
provincial championship eleven times and has competed thirteen times
as of 2018 in 13 Tournament of Hearts. All these titles go along
with 15 Grand Slam Curling wins on the World Curling Tour. In 2014
she inducted into the Order of Manitoba.
Josephine Allin. Born
July 8, 1905. Died 1993. Elizabeth graduated from university with a degree in physics. She would
go on to become the 1st woman to be appointed to the Physics Department at the
University of Toronto. She was also a founding member of the Canadian Association
of Professional Physicists. A loyal University of Toronto employee, she wrote the history
of the university Physics Department. You can read about her place and struggle
for recognition of her ability to work in a dominant male occupation
in the book Great Dames. Source: Alison Prentice, Elizabeth Allin:
Physicist in Elspeth Cameron and Janice
Dicken, eds. Great dames. Toronto: University of Toronto
Gillis. Born July 9, 1953 Montreal, Quebec.
She began taking gymnastic and ballet lessons when she was just
three years old. She
is a solo artist who has presented modern ballet around the world. She has
hip-length chestnut hair and wears remarkable costumes. In 1881 she founded
the Margie Gillis Dance Foundation to support and present her
artistic work. She introduced modern
dance to contemporary China. She has performed in Asia, India, Europe and
the Middle East as well as throughout North and South America. She was named Canadian Cultural Ambassador
in 1981 and in 1986 Quebec Cultural Ambassador. When she is not on stage she had
been dedicated to the fight against AIDS and a strong supporter of
OXFAM and the Planned Parenthood Foundation. In 1988 she was
appointed to the Order of Canada, the 1st modern dance artist to
receive this honor. In 2001 she she received a
Career Grant from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec for
her exceptional contribution to Quebec culture. In 2004 she was
named as one of the 25 to Watch by Dance Magazine. In 2008
she received the 1st MAD Spirit Award from the Stella Adler Studio
of Acting in New York, City, New York, U.S.A. for her involvement in
various social causes. That same year she was awarded the Walter
Carsen Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts from the Canada
Council for the Arts. In 2009 she was inducted as a Knight in the
National Order of Quebec. On March 3, 2011, Gillis was named a 2011
laureate of the Governor General's Performing Arts Awards for
Lifetime Artistic Achievement. Two months later she received a
Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award from the Governor Generals
Performing Arts Awards. In 2013
she was upgraded to Officer of the Order of Canada.
née Forget. Born July 10, 1896 Montreal, Quebec. Died November 2, 1981.
She married Pierre-Francois Casgrain and the couple had four
is remembered for her campaign for women’s right to vote (suffrage)
in the province of Québec before WW II. (Quebec, the last province
to grant women the vote, passing legislation only in 1940.)
She founded the Provincial Franchise Committee in 1921. 1928 through
1942 she was the leader of the League for Women's Rights. In the
1930's she was host of the popular radio program
Fémina. She continued a career in politics becoming the
1st Canadian woman
to lead a provincial political party. She was the leader of the Quebec CCF Party from 1951-1957.
She ran for a seat in the House of commons in Ottawa in 1952, 1953,
1957 and1958. She ran for a seat for the New Democratic Party in
1962 and 1963 in the federal general elections. In 1967 she was
inducted as an Officer of the Order of Canada and was promoted to
Companion in the Order in 1974. In 1969 she was elected
president of the Consumer's Association of Canada in Quebec. In 1970 she was appointed to the Senate
of Canada. In 1982 The Liberal Party established the
Thérèse Casgrain Volunteer Award but the Conservative
government discontinued the award only to have it reinstated in 2001
by the Liberal Party. In 2012 it was replaced as the Prime
Minister's Volunteer Award by the Conservatives.. In 2016 the
Liberal government renamed the award as the Thérèse Casgrain
Lifetime Volunteer Achievement Award. In 1985 Canada Post issued a
stamp in her honour. From 2004 to 2012 her image appeared on the
reverse of the $50.00 banknote along with the Famous Five. In
2012 a statue of her, Idola Saint-Jean (1880-1945), Marie-Claire
She is considered a leading woman of 20th century
Born July 10, 1931 Wingham, Ontario.
Alice married James Munroe (1929-2016) in 1951. Her short stories
appear in magazines such as the New Yorker
and The Atlantic.
She has collected her stories and published numerous books of stories.
In 1976 She married Gerald Fremlin (1924-2013). A novel, Lives of
Girls and Women, grew
from her short stories. She has received 3 Governor General’s awards for her works.
She also has won the Canada-Australia Literary Prize and the Marion Engel
Award and the W. H. Smith Award from Great Britain.
In 2013 she was
awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.
Griffith Wylie Watson.
née McArthur Born July 11, 1911 Stettler, Alberta. Died December 15,
1974 Guelph, Ontario. Helen married Dr. William Watson in 1931.
She attended the University of
Alberta graduating in 1934 with a Bachelor of Science in public
health nursing. She went on to earn a Master's degree from Columbia
University, New York, U.S.A. She became Director of the School of
Nursing at the University of Alberta. Helen also served as the
head of public health nursing for the province of Alberta for three
years. She joined
the Red Cross Society and worked her way to later became national
director of nursing services. She would also serve as president of the Canadian Nurses Association
from 1950 through 1954. In 1957 she earned the Florence Nightingale Award for her
work in Korea where she served to rebuild the infrastructure of
public health. . It is the highest international nursing aware that
the Red Cross bestows. She
chaired a nursing advisory committee in Geneva, Switzerland and
serving on an International Council of Nurses. Back in Canada, she
was president of the Canadian Nurses' Association and the Ontario
College of Nurses
She was and officer of the Order of Canada in 1971. she
married Dr. William Watson.
Born July 11, 1949, London, England. On the ocean voyage’ when her
family immigrated to Canada’ she entertained in a children’s talent
show. At 13 she received a guitar as a Christmas gift. The following
year she saw English guitarist, Julian Beam, perform and she was
smitten with the power of the music. In 1972 she graduated from the
University of Toronto, won the Canadian National Music Competition
and toured with British guitarist John Mills. Studying in Europe
1972 -1974 she also busked in Italy and performed recitals in
Belgium, Holland and France. 1975, back in North America, she had
her 1st Carnegie Hall performance and in Canada she
graced the cover of the Canadian Magazine. The story tag line
was “The first lady of guitar”. In 1978 she would use this stage
line as a title for one of her many recordings. She performs for
world leaders and royalty bringing classical guitar to new
recognition by performing with such notables as Tracy Chapman,
George Zamphir, Roger Whitaker, Eric Clapton, Gordon Lightfoot, and
Chet Atkins. She is also known for her solo performances with
symphony orchestras and her performances for numerous charitable
performances. In 1988 she published In My Own Key: My Life in
Love and Music (Stoddard Publishing). In 1992 she married John
B. Simon and settled in California. Divorced in 2004, she
eventually returned to Toronto. She had a separation from the stage
when she was diagnosed with Musician Focal Dystopia which can produce
muscle spasms. By 2009 she had reinvented her playing, added singing
and songwriting to her repertoire and is back on stage and
recording. Her work has garnered her 5 Canadian Juno awards. She
has been inducted into the Order of Canada and the Order of Ontario.
Sources: In My Own Key by Liona Boyd (Stoddard, 1988) ; Liona Boyd
web site (accessed March 2014)
Astman. Born July 12, 1950 Rochester, New York
U.S.A. Barbara earned an Associate Degree from the Rochester Institute of
Technology's School for American Craftsmen. In 1970 she relocated to
Toronto to attend the Ontario College of are graduating with an
Associate Degree. In 1975 she joined the faculty of the Ontario
College of Art (OCAD University). In 1977 she began the Colour Xerox
Artist's Program at Visual Art Ontario. As a photographer
and multimedia artist, she is fascinated by current technological developments,
which she mixes with a variety of traditional art forms. She is a member of the
Board of Directors at the Art Gallery at Harbourfront, now called
Power Point, from 1983-1985. She has also served on the Boards of
the City of Toronto Public Art Commission and the curatorial Team
for the International Water Works Exhibition. Her works have
been installed at the Calgary Winter Olympics in 1987, at the
Canadian Embassy, Berlin, Germany. She is in the forefront
of post-modern art activity.
In 2000 she was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy. (2018)
Born July 13,1923 Saint Léon
de Val Racine, Quebec. Died August 15, 2010 Ottawa, Ontario. The
family relocated to Ontario and she grew up in Val Gagné near
Timmins. Like many of her generation
she turned 1st to teaching for a career earning her teaching certificate from
the University of Ottawa. She returned to university in 1946 to earn
her BA. After university she married Robert Nantais and the couple
had five children. She taught high school and wrote as a freelance
journalist for various newspapers and magazines and later she became a successful civil servant
working in information services for the federal Treasury Board. Through
all of this her desire to write remained strong. She has published works in
both English and French. She was known for the trilogies Les chroniques du
Nouvel-Ontario and The Saga of Northern Ontario and other
historical novels. Her works have earned the Prix Champlain, Prix du Nouvel-Ontario and
Prix du Droit. In 1983 she wrote the the TV script Les Ontariens. in
E. Greenough. Born July 13,
1960 Edmonton, Alberta. She took up equestrian sports at age 11. She
joined the Canadian Equestrian Team in 1983 and
July 13, 1986 became the 1st woman
and 1st North American to win
the World Show Jumping Championships. Her mount was a Hanovarioan
named Mr. T. They took the gold medal as the 1st rider to have zero faults.
At the time it was a shock to win in the Male dominated European circuit.
She and Mr. T returned to Europe in the fall of 1986 and won the Grand Prix
of Stuttgart in Germany. In the Olympic Games, Seoul, Korea she rode the
horse Simon Says. In 1992 she focused on colour commentating for her sport
for the Canadian Broadcast Corporation (CBC). In 2001 she qualified to
represent Canada in the 2003 Pan American Games but was injured and could
not ride and after that she turned to coaching. She taught horsemanship in
Calgary, Alberta and did clinics around the world. She was inducted as a
Member of the Order of Canada in 1990. (2018)
Born July 14, 1918 Toronto, Ontario. Died December 18, 1993
Toronto, Ontario. She became a member of the National Union of
Public Employees when she served as secretary for the Township of
North York, Ontario. She served in several union positions including
being elected as President from 1959 through 1967. In 1965 she
chaired the Ontario Federation of Labour's Women's Committee as a
prominent feminist and strong supporter for gender pay equity. In
1968 she was appointed to the Advisory Council for the Royal
Commission on the Status of Women. She was the 1st
woman to hold the top position in a Canadian Union. In 1975 she was
elected to the national president of the Canadian Union of Public
Employees (CUPE). In 1985 she earned the Governor General's Award in
Commemoration of the Persons Case. (2018)
July 14, 1926 Sault Ste Marie, Ontario. An operatic soprano, she started performing
on CBC radio in the late 1940’s. In 1954 she moved to England to become principal
soprano soloist in the BBC’s light Music Department for 15 years. She made 12
albums of light classical music and musical comedy before returning to Toronto
in 1970.In 1965 she represented Canada at a special liberation anniversary
concert in the Netherlands in May 1965. In 1990 she returned to Sault
Ste. Marie and was appointed to Algoma University and became a voice teacher
at the Algoma Conservatory of Music. In 2009 she was inducted into the Sault
Ste. Marie Walk of Fame.
née Church Born July 15, 1930 Timmins, Ontario.
Died October 3, 2016 Iroquois Falls, Ontario. When she was 19 she
was appointed to the Timmins Parks and Recreation Commission where
she served as the only woman for 20 years. In the late 1970's she
was the executive director of the the Ontario wing of the Liberal
Party of Canada. In 1976 she married Les Finnerty and the couple
had three children. She blazed a trail for women in the field of political
activism, earning a national and international recognition and respect for her
skills. She made an indelible mark in the field of political organization at the
federal and provincial levels. Her talent and her reputation have seen her invited
to work or train others in every province in Canada. In 1994 she was invited to
Benin, Africa, as an International Trainer of the National Democratic Institute
for International Affairs. She was appointed a member of the Senate of Canada in
1999 serving on no less than ten standing committees. She retired July 15, 2005.
Born July 16, 1943, Montreal , Quebec. Sally earned her Bachelor of
Education at McGill University, Montreal in 1966. In 2001 she would
return to university to earn her Master’s at the University of
Toronto. She started working as a physical education teacher but
soon found herself involved in journalism where she became editor in
chief for Homemakers magazine from 1988 through 1999. Along
with numerous magazine articles she has published several books
including Mila, the biography of Mila Mulroney, wife of Prime
Minister Brian Mulroney in 1982. Her works have brought the
political and cultural struggles of women around the world to her
readers. She has highlighted strife of women in Bosnia, Somalia,
Rwanda and Afghanistan. She has chronicled lives of women who have
opposed efforts of the Taliban to subjugate women. Her writings have
earned her the Amnesty International’s Media Award in both 200 and
again in 2002. She has also produced award winning documentaries for
the CBC spotlighting international struggles for women’s rights. She
is a founder of WILLOW a resource for Breast Cancer in Canada. As
well she serves on the Council of Advisors for the Canadian Women’s
Foundation. She has been granted numerous honorary degrees from
universities and in 1998 she was inducted into the Order of Canada.
In 2002 she was UNICEF’s Special Representative to Afghanistan and
in 2008 she received the Canadian Journalism Foundation Lifetime
Source: ‘Sally Armstrong’ by Dana Schwab New Brunswick Literary
Encyclopedia 2009. Online (Accessed May 2014)
| ||Louise Forchette.
July 16, 1946 Montreal, Quebec. In 1970 she earned her BA from
Université de Montréal. In 1978 she earned an advanced Master’s
Degree from the College of Europe, Bruges, Belgium. In 1971 she
began her career at the Canadian Department of External Affairs. Her
1st posting as a diplomat was in Athens, Greece and in
1978 she joined the Canadian delegation at the United Nations in
Geneva, Switzerland. In 1985 she was a three point Canadian
Ambassador to Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay. The government of
Canada was impressed by her secret mission to Cuba in 1989 that she
was named as the 1st female Canadian ambassador to the
United Nations in 1992. Leaving the diplomatic corps in 1995 she
became assistant Deputy Minister of National Defense, again the 1st
woman to hold such a position. March 2, 1998, she was the 1st
person to be appointed to the position of Deputy Secretary General,
a position she held until March 31, 2006. That same year she was
inducted into the Order of Canada. She is a member of the Global
Leadership Foundation and the International Advisory Board at the
Institute for the Study of International Development at McGill
University, Montreal, Quebec.
Source: Former Deputy-Secretary-General,
www.un.org (accessed September 2010.);
Margaret Weiers, Envoys Extraordinary: Women of the Canadian
Foreign Service (Toronto: Dundurn, 1995)
Born July 17,1955 Montreal, Quebec. She earned
her bachelor degree in visual arts from the University of Ottawa. She is an artist who uses large
photographic pieces as her medium of expression. She is also a sculptor.
Her work has been chosen to represent Canada at 3 international expositions.
In 1991 she began teaching at Concordia University, Montreal. In
1992 one of her more famous works, La Voie
lactée, a photograph of a woman's re lips displayed on the rooftop
Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal
has become an icon of the city of Montréal. She also had solo exhibitions
across North America, Europe, Brazil and Australia. in 1997
she was a guest professor in Paris and Grenoble, France. In 2011 she
received the Governor General's Award for Visual and Media Arts.
Laurence. née Wemyss. Born
July 18, 1926 Neepawa, Manitoba. Died January 5, 1987 Selwyn,
Ontario. From age seven she wrote stories.
Her gift of writing leaves a permanent mark on contemporary Canadian
Literature. Her 1st writing job was as a reporter and book reviewer
for the Winnipeg Citizen. She wrote with the experience
of having lived in England, Somalilanc, Ghana, Greece, Crete, Palestine,
India, Egypt and Spain but Canada was always home.
She is much beloved and remembered for her works, her personal
warmth, strength and humor which she shared so generously.
In 1972 she became a Companion of the Order of Canada. She won two
Governor General's Awards for her novels, The Diviners in
1974 and A Jest of God in 1996. An annual lecture
series has been named in her honour by the Writer's Trust of Canada.
The University of Winnipeg and York University, Toronto, have named
buildings in her honour. In 2016 she was named a National Historic
Wilson. Born July 19, 1910 Glasgow, Scotland. Died September 3, 1933 Toronto, Ontario. When just a child Jean
emigrated to Canada with her family. When she was 15 she began to
skate. In 1931 she was the North American indoor
speed skating champion. At
the 1932 Olympics in Lake Placid, New York, U.S.A., when women’s speed skating was a demonstration sport,
Jean won the 500m race in 58 seconds and came second in the 1500 m
event. At only 23 years
of age she died from a progressive muscular disease. In 1934 the
Jean Wilson Trophy for indoor women's speed skating was created by
the Toronto Telegram newspaper. She was inducted
into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 1955.
Tantoo Cardinal. Born July 20, 1950 Fort McMurray, Alberta.
Tantoo has become one of North America’s most widely recognized
actors. In 1968 she married Fred Martin. She has earned a
Grammy award for her work as a guest appearance on the TV program
of 60, one of numerous television
shows in which she has appeared. She has also appeared in numerous
films including Dances With Wolves. She has also won the American Indian Festival,
Best Actress, and the
1st Rudy Martin Award for Outstanding Achievement by a Native
American in film for
Legends of the Fall.
Maclean’s Magazine declared her Actress
of the Year.
In 2002 she was inducted as a Member of the Order of Canada
'for her contributions to the growth and development of Aboriginal
performing Arts in Canada, as a screen and stage actress, and as a
founding member of the Saskatchewan Native Theatre Company. Tantoo has
her hands in cement on Neka'new'ak: The Aboriginal Walk of Honour,
Edmonton, Alberta. On August 3, 2011 she and fellow Canadian actor Margot
Kidder (1948-2018) were arrested with others for protesting the
proposed extension of the Keystone Pipeline. In 2017 she received
the Earle Grey Award for lifetime achievement from the Academy of
Canadian Cinema and Television.
21||Eva L. J. Rosinger.
Hartl. Born July 21, 1941, Prague, Poland. She earned her Master’s
in Chemical engineering from the Technical University in Prague in
1963 and by 1968 she had earned her PhD. Immigrating to Toronto she
attended the University of Toronto working as a Post-Doctoral
Fellow. In Toronto she married Herbert E. Rosinger on November 27
1969. She would work in West Germany including served as Vice
President of Radioactive Management with the OECD in Paris, France
1982-1985 before returning to Canada and settling in Ottawa. She is
the author of over 40 scientific reports and papers on environmental
issues, waste management, environmental assessment, polymer science
and chemical management. She was a member of the Board of Directors
of the Canadian Nuclear Association and has been advisor to the
Committee on Nuclear Safety and the Atomic Energy Control Board. In
1992-1994 she was the elected Council member of the Association of
Professional Engineers of Manitoba. She has also served on the Board
of Directors for Employment Projects for Women Incorporated. She
enjoys skiing and has served the Canadian Association of Nordic Ski
Instructors where she was a qualified cross-country coach,
instructor and examiner.
| ||Judith Maxwell.
July 21, 1943 Kingston, Ontario. Judith attended Dalhousie
University, Halifax, Nova Scotia earning her Bachelor of Commerce
Degree in 1963. She studied at the London School of Economics in
England from 1965-1966. On May 8 1970 she married Anthony Stirling
and the couple have 2 children. She worked as a researcher
with the Combines Investigation Branch of the Federal Department of
Consumer and Corporate Affairs until 1965. She worked as an economist
and writer for the Financial Times of Canada from 1966 through 1972
and then was Director of Policy Studies at the C.D. Howe Institute
until 1980. She worked with the Economic Council of Canada from
1985-1992 prior to becoming Associate Director of the School of
Policy Studies at Queen’s University, Kingston and Executive
Director of Queen’s-University of Ottawa Economic Projects in
1992-1994. She was a member of Ontario Premier’s Council from
1998-1990. She has authored several books the economics and social
role of government. In 1996 she was inducted into the Order of
Canada. She was a founding president of the Canadian Policy Research
Networks until she retired in 2005. She is a member of the Board of
Governors of the Community Foundation of Ottawa and is part of a
group of volunteers working to establish a Citizens Academy of
Born July 22, 1891 Bramley England. Died
August 11, 1968 Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. She and her widowed mother immigrated to Waterbury
Connecticut, U.S.A. as a teenager. She became a factory worker and found
herself a women’s rights supporter. She moved to her brother’s farm near
Strasbourg, Saskatchewan in 1914. By 1919 she moved to Kerrobert and worked
as a bookkeeper. She worked to found the local library and pursued her own
studies in Social issues. After her mother’s death in the early 1920’s she
traveled abroad to continue her education in commonwealth countries. She
reported her experiences back to Canada and they were published in the Star
Phoenix and other newspapers. It was the Winnipeg Free Press that would
later publish a booklet of some of her articles. She was active in the
Consumers Association of Canada serving as provincial president in 1954 and
then as national President from 1956-1960 in Ottawa. She was also active in
the Saskatoon Council of Women and took interest in the Liberal Party of
Suggestion submitted by June Coxon.
Mary Gowanlock. née Johnson. Born July 23, 1863 Tintern, Upper Canada (now Ontario). Died September 12 1899. She was married in her home of Tintern,
Lincoln County, Ontario on October 1, 1884. The newlyweds headed for western
Canada to begin life where she one of two white women at their
settlement. Her husband, John, was massacred by the Cree Indians at Frog
Lake, North West Territories (now Alberta) during the Northwest Rebellion on
April 2, 1885. Theresa was taken captive into the camp of Chief Big
Bear, and held captive for two months before being rescued by the Northwest
Mounted Police. Theresa and the other white women captive Theresa Delaney
wrote of there experience. Theresa returned home to Ontario but never
overcame the terrors of the ordeal which broke her spirit.
July 24, 1982 Winnipeg, Manitoba. She lived in New
Zealand when her family moved there in 1986. She left Columbia University, New
York, U.S.A. after a year of studies to focus on her acting career. This young actress won her
1st Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress at 11 years old for her 1st
Piano in 1993. By 2018 she had
appeared in some 20 movies since her debut.
She graduated from Windward School in West Los Angeles, California in June
2000. She completed the school's community service requirement by working in
an LA soup kitchen and at a special education center. In 2001 In 2001 she
receive an Award from the Online Film Critics Society for her role
in Almost Famous. In 2005 she earned the Gotham Independent
Film Award for the Squid and the Whale. In 2008 she way the
Satellite Award for her performance in True Blood and in
2009 she won a Golden Globe Award for Best Performance in by an
Actress in a Television Drama Series, True Blood. Anna enjoys music and
she plays both the piano and the cello. August 21, 2010 Anna married actor,
Stephen Moyer, becoming stepmother to his two children.
July 25, 1905 Winnipeg, Manitoba. Died July 10,1991 Sechelt,
British Columbia. She was born into a political household as
the daughter of J. S. Woodsworth, founder of the CCF party of Canada.
She followed her home training by entering politics and being a known
social activist. In 1932 she married politician, Angus MacInnis
(1884-1964). She served as a member of the legislative Assembly of
British Columbia from 1941 to 1945 and as a Member of Parliament in
Ottawa from 1965 to 1974
the 1st woman from British Columbia
and the 1st wife of a former
Canadian Member of Parliament elected on her own right
to be elected to the House of
Commons and the 1st wife of a former Canadian Member of parliament.
In 1974 she became an Officer in the Order of Canada.
In 1990 she was inducted into the Order of British Columbia.
Forrester. Born July 25, 1930 Montreal, Quebec 1930. Died
June 16, 2010 Toronto, Ontario.
An internationally famous soprano, Maureen has sung all over the world
in such sites as the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Whenever she was performing
a series of songs she would always include a song by a Canadian artist. In 1957
she married Eugene Kash (1912-2014) and the couple had five
children. In 1967 she became a Companion of the Order of Canada.
In 1979 she received the Loyola Medal from Concordia
University, Montreal and the following year she received the
Diplôme d'honneur from the Canadian Conference of the
Arts. In 1983 she received the Sanford Medal from Yale University,
New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A. From 1986 through 1990 Maureen
served as Chancellor for Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo,
Ontario and the recital hall was named in her honour. In 1990 she
was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame followed in 1995
with the Governor General's Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2000 she
earned a star on Canada's Walk of Fame, Toronto. She was inducted an
Officer in the National Order of Quebec in 2003 and in 2004 she
became a MasterWorks honouree of the Audio Visual Preservation
Trust of Canada.
Cohen. Born July 26,
1926 Saint John, New Brunswick. Erminie studied at Mount Allison University
in Sackville, New Brunswick. For some 50 years she has been respected businesswoman of the Saint
John business community. In 1991 she received a Certificate of Appreciation
for distinguished service to the community from the United Nations
Association. In 1948 she married Edgar Cohen and the couple have three
children. She was the
woman to be elected president of her synagogue. As a result of her work she
was elected National Vice President of the Hadassah WIZO Organization of
Canada. She was appointed to the Senate of Canada in 1993 and served
until retirement in 2001. After retirement she continued to serve on
the Progressive Conservative National Task Force on Poverty.
She has been awarded the Humanitarian award from the Salvation Army
and the Red Cross Humanitarian Award amongst other awards. She
became a Member of the Order of Canada invested on May 27, 2011.
Born July 26, 1939 Central Bedeque, Prince Edward Island.
Catherine received a Bachelor of Commerce from Mount Allison
University and went on to Dalhousie for her Bachelor of Education in
1962. She also did post graduate business studies at Syracuse
University, New York, U.S.A. She was elected to the PEI
Legislative Assembly in 1974 and was appointed to cabinet as
Minister of Health and Social Services and Minister Responsible for
Disabled Persons. She took a break in 1978 from politics to work in
the family business. In 1988 she was elected to the federal House of
Commons. Back in PEI she ran for the leadership of the PEI Liberal
Party in January 1993.
Winning the provincial
election that year she became the 1st woman leader of a political
party in Canada to lead her party to victory in a general election.
As premier her efforts saw the 1st significant
electoral reform in a century, a new electoral system with 27 single
member ridings. She also saw the beginning of construction of the
Confederation Bridge linking PEI to New Brunswick.
She resigned as Premier in October
She was appointed to the Senate of Canada in September 1997 and
retired July 25, 2014.
née Stowe. Born July 27, 1857, Mount Pleasant, Toronto, Canada West
(Now Ontario) . Died September 25, 1943, Toronto, Ontario. Augusta’s
mother and mentor was Dr. Emily Stowe(1831-1903).
Augusta was the 1st
woman to earn a medical degree in Canada. She graduated from
Victoria College, (an affiliate of the University of Toronto)
Cobourg, Ontario in 1883. Upon graduation she married Dr. John B.
Gullen, a future founder in 1896 of Toronto Western Hospital. After
their marriage the couple did post graduate coursed in children’s medicine in New York, U.S.A. Augusta taught at the Ontario Medical
College for Women (known 1883-94 as the Woman's Medical College,
Toronto) and was on U of T Senate 1910-22.
Both she and her mother were leading
figures in the suffrage movement. Augusta succeeded her mother as
president of the Dominion Women's Enfranchisement Assn in 1903. She
was also a founder of the National Council of women. In 1935 she
received the Order of the British Empire.
Sources: Carla Hacker. The Indomitable Women Doctors. (1974)
; K. Smith. Dr. Augusta Stowe-Gullen; a pioneer of social conscience
in The Canadian Medical Association Journal, January 15, 1982
; The Canadian Encyclopedia. Online (Accessed June 2003)
Anne Douglas Savage. Born July 27, 1896 Montreal, Quebec. Died March
25, 1971 Montreal, Quebec. Growing up with summers in the Laurentian
mountains Anne learned to lover her surroundings. She studied art at
the Art association of Montreal between 1914 and 1918 During World
War l. her twin brother was killed. After the war Anne studied
design at the Minneapolis School of Art in Minnesota, U.S.A.
Returning home to Montreal she began teaching art at Baron Byng High
School from 1922 through 1947. She was a pioneer in teaching
children’s art. Her own works matured showed a lyrical quality and later in life she was attracted
to the abstract form of painting. In 1921 she joined the Beaver Hall
Hill Group of painters.. After spending some time at the Ontario
College of Art, Toronto with some members of the famous Group of
Sever she traveled to Europe and British Columbia. In 1933 she was a
founding member of the Canadian Group of Painters where she served
in 1949 and again in 1960 as president. In 1948 she became
supervisor of art for the Protestant School Board of Montreal. She
encouraged the founding of the High School Art Teaching Association
and in 1955 she she inspired the formation of the Child Art
Council, now the Quebec Society for Education Through Art. Retiring
from full time teaching art in 1953 she taught at the McGill
University from 1954-1959. Her archives are stored at Concordia
Marie Nicole Edith
July 27, 1942 Paquetville, New Brunswick.
Learning music in her home town of Caroquet, New Brunswick, she
the Acadian culture wherever she entertains. She has a strong singing
voice and is a well rounded entertainer combining humor with her
own music. Edith was one of the first songsters to promote Acadian
culture in Canada and internationally. She was able to launch her
career on Radio-Canada in Moncton, New Brunswick. By 1962 she was
singing with CBC TV Halifax on Singalong Jubilee. In 1969 she
graduated from Laval University, Quebec City. In 1970 she was a
featured performer at the Canadian Pavilion at Expo '70 in Osaka,
Japan. She won the award
of the Académie Charles-Cros, in Paris, France and she was
induced as a Chevalier de l'Ordre de la
in France. In 1999 France presented her with the Chevalier de
l'Ordre Nationale du Mérite de la
République française She was made a
of the Order du Mérite de la culture française by the Canadian Senate
and was induced an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1975. She has recorded some
27 albums of her Acadian music and in 2007 her song, Paquetville,
was inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame. July 2,
2009 she was one of four musicians who had their picture on stamps
issued by Canada Post. The following year she received the Lifetime
Achievement Award from the Society Of Composers, Authors, and Music
Publishers of Canada (SOCAN). In 2012 she was given the Lieutenant-Governor's
Award for High Achievement in the Arts for Performing Arts. and in
2013 she was inducted as a Member of the Order of New Brunswick.
Born July 28, 1970 Kingsbury,
Quebec. Isabelle competed with Pascal Courchesne placing 5th
at the 1985 Skate America before she teamed up with skating partner Lloyd Eisler
(1963- ) in 1987. This pair skaters are one of Canada’s finest pairs figure skating
teams. They hold 5 Canadian Championships, 5 World Championship medals,
and 2 Olympic Bronze medals in 1992 and 1994. In 1992 the pair teamed up
with other skaters for form B.B.E. Productions Inc.(1992-2003)
organizing professional figure skating events across Canada raising
funds for the Children's Wish Foundation of Canada with whom
the pair had been National Spokespersons. The couple retired from
formal competition in 1994 and that year they were awarded the
Meritorious Service Decoration in the Civil Division, presented by
the Governor General. In 1996 she was the co-author of the book;
Brasseur & Eisler: To Catch a Dream. A second follow-up book
was called Brasseur & Eisler; the Professional Years. October
8, 1996 she married pairs skater Rocky Marval (1965- )
and the couple have one daughter. She became a member of the
Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 2000.
Born July 29,1935 Vancouver, British Columbia. Died September 24, 1975.
When Pat was just ten years old her 1st poem was published in the
Vancouver Sun newspaper. Her 1st volume of poetry was published
in 1968. She was Co–chair of the
league of Canadian Poets in 1974 and later the British Columbia Arts
Council. She devoted
herself to the promotion of poetry. She published 4 collections of
her own poetry. A mother
of four children, she was murdered by her husband, Roy Lowther ( d
1985), in September 1975. The couple had married in 1963 and they
had four children. In 1977 A Stone Diary was published. In
1980 her early works and previously unpublished poems were published
in Final Instructions. The League of Canadian Poets
annually awards the Pat Lowther Award for a book of poetry by a
Canadian woman. In 1996 a new manuscript was discover and published
with the title; Time Capsule. Pat's life and death was the
inspiration for the Carol Shields (1935-2003) novel, Swan:
Born July 29,1971 Windsor, Quebec. Annie has been a member of the
National Short Track Speed Skating Team for more than 12 years. She is one of
Canada's most decorated female Olympians with credits of one bronze medal and
two gold medals at the 1998 and 1992 Winter Olympic Games. She has also earned
four individual gold medals from 1990 through 1997 at the World
Championships to accompany her two silver and four bronze World Championship
individual medals. She also holds team medals, a gold, two silver and three
bronze for World Championships from 1991 through 2002. She had to miss the
Lillehammer Olympic Games in 1994 because of a severe concussion she had
sustained at the Canadian Olympic trials. Just month prior to the 1998
Nagano Olympic Games he underwent surgery on both legs to relieve a chronic
problem with compartment syndrome. At the Nagano
Olympic Games in 1998 she became the 1st Canadian woman to win individual
Olympic gold in short track speed skating in the 500 meter race.
She was the 1998 Quebec Athlete of the year. An accident left her with
an 8 inch gash on her left thigh during a race in December 2000 but she
returned to competition qualifying for the 2002 Salt Lake City
Olympics in 2002 as an alternated in the women's 3000 metre relay. Annie has
coached some of her family members who have also become
recognized skaters. While she enjoys her sport and wants to maintain her performance
level she also aims to have fun with the sport. .
Louie. Born July 30, 1949 Vancouver, British Columbia.
Alexina earned a Bachelor of Music in Music History from the University of
British Columbia in 1970. She went on to complete studies for her Master's
degree from the University of California, San Diego, U.S.A. in 1974. She is
and composer who writes music for orchestra, chamber music and electronic music.
She relocated to Toronto in 1980.
She is known for a work that she dedicated to the memory of the famous
Canadian pianist Glenn Gould.
In 1986 she composed the opening music,
The Ringing Earth, for Expo 86 in Vancouver and was named that year as
Composer of the Year by Canadian Music Council. In 1988 she won a Juno Award for
her orchestral composition, Song of Paradise.
In 1990, 1992, and 2003 she received the SOCAN Concert Music
Award for the most performed Classical composer of the year.
In 1999 she won the Jules Leger Prize for new Chamber Music
for Nightfall, a work for 14 strings written for I Musici de Montreal.
In 2001 she was inducted into the Order of Ontario and the Order of Canada in
2005. In 2006 she was made a fellow of he Royal Society of Canada.
Wong. Born July 31,
1921 London, Ontario. She was raised in London Ontario where her family were
the only Chinese people in town. Her father believed that all his children,
both boys and girls should get an education and study for the professions.
Gretta argued with family members when she was young and they teased her
saying that she should become a lawyer. Gretta earned her undergraduate
degree at the University of Western Ontario in London before attending Osgoode Law
School. She was called to the bar in 1946 in Ontario without knowing nor really caring
that she was the 1st Chinese Canadian
woman to practice Law. Despite the discrimination against the
Chinese in Toronto she was able to complete her articling at McCarthy and
McCarthy where she reported to a family acquaintance Leighton McCarthy.
December 9, 1950 she married a fellow lawyer James Alan R. Grant and the
couple would have four children. Gretta stayed at home much of the 1950’s
raising her children but she maintained her membership in the Low Society of
Upper Canada. She also kept up to date by working with her husband when he
brought work home. Late in the 1950’s she took a job as a City Solicitor in
London. In the 1960’s she founded the Middlesex [county] Women’s Law
Association. From 1967 through 1988 she worked in London’s first Legal Aid
Office. She did spend one year away from London working as the Area Director
of the York County Legal Aid Society. She was the 1st woman
trustee of the Middlesex Law Association and served as president in 1981.
After retirement she served as director of the London office of the Chinese
– Canadian Council. In 1989 she was working with the City of London Race
Relations Advisory Committee.
Sources: Crossing the Bar :an exhibition of the Law Society of Upper
Canada Museum, 1993. Online Accessed January 2013; Gretta Wong Grant,
Canada’s first Chinese-Canadian female Lawyer by Constance Backhouse.
Online Accessed January 2013.; Road to Justice: the legal struggle for equal
rights for Chinese Canadians. Online Accessed January 2013.
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