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Turner, Ashley

  • Persoon
Ashley Turner completed a Master's Degree in criminology from the University of Ottawa in 1988. She was a founding member and director of JEWELS (Justice, Equality, and Equity for Women Everywhere, Legally, Lawlessly, and Shamelessly), a sanctuary organization for women and children. She is also the author of several articles on the history of sanctuaries.
Ashley Turner is a human rights activist and lobbied for support on many issues including anti-rape, anti-violence against women, rights for women in prison, and support for victims of abuse. She was also a front line worker in the anti-rape and battered women's movements and worked at organizations in the Ottawa area.

National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC)

  • Instelling
  • 1971-[2010]

The National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC) was an umbrella organization for women’s groups and groups that supported women’s issues in Canada.
In 1970, commissioned by the federal government and chaired by Florence Bird, the Royal Commission on the Status of Women (RCSW) released a report which recognized women’s subordinate place in Canadian Society. The report contained 167 recommendations to strengthen women’s position in Canada. In 1971, the National Ad Hoc Committee on the Status of Women was formed by a group of women determined to see these recommendations implemented in the Canadian Society. Further, they proposed that this large organization would form committees to address key matters of concern, lobby the government for legislative changes and raise public awareness about women’s issues. During the Strategy for Change conference led by Laura Sabia in Toronto in 1972, it was decided that « Ad Hoc » should be dropped from the name, thus the organization became known as the National Action Committee on the Status of Women. Initially, the first thirty groups that made up NAC were mostly based in Toronto, but over time, the number of member groups increased dramatically and represented more of Canada. In fact, in 1977 NAC had approximately 120 member groups registered, 576 groups in 1988, and around 600 in 1996. Membership was diverse in class and politics: “They included many older national women’s organizations, business and professional women, unions, YWCAs, service organizations such as women’s shelters and rape crisis centres, immigrant women’s caucuses in various mixed groups and political parties.” (Rise Up!). The organization became officially bilingual in 1976.

NAC’s structure remained consistent and was volunteer based. NAC was led by an elected president and supported by a number of elected vice presidents, regional representatives and member groups. Approximately every two years there was an election for a new presidential candidate. Over the years, each NAC president brought her own talents, perspective and leadership direction to the organization. Typically, each president served a two-year term, beginning with Lauria Sabia. Subsequent presidents were Grace Hartman, Lorna Marsden, Kay Macpherson, Lynn McDonald, Jean Wood, Doris Anderson, Chavia Hosek, Louise Delude, Lynn Kaye, Judy Rebick, Sunera Thobani, and Joan Grant-Cummings.
Along with the president, the vice-presidents and regional representatives from the NAC Executive made decisions about hiring and office practices and acted as liaisons to member groups. The Executive met throughout the year to provide continuity and direction. NAC was organized in several committees which focused on particular issues including employment, pensions and income security; social services (including child care); violence against women; health and reproductive rights; pornography; visible minority and immigrant women; native women, etc.

. Each year an annual general meeting was held in order to communicate with member groups, assess strategies, plan for actions and campaigns and form committees to effectively organize their voices. Each member group had the opportunity to send a representative to the meeting who could vote on proposed amendments to the Constitution or any motion that was brought forward. Committees responded to issues in their jurisdiction as they arose. Members had the opportunity to join committees, which met during the year, planning and organizing campaigns and report to the AGM.

In order to reach the many member groups, NAC published short newsletters that highlighted current issues and pertinent events. The publication was first called Status of Women News (1973-1985), commonly referred to as Status, and evolved into Memo. The publication became Feminist Action Feministe (1985), and finally Action Now (1990).

The first NAC office was located in Toronto, but as NAC’s membership grew larger and it received more funding from the government, it was decided to open an Ottawa office. Unfortunately, it became expensive to have two offices and therefore in 1995, it was decided that the Ottawa bureau would have to close down. The NAC Toronto office changed location, size and personnel, reflecting financial and organizational pressures.

Funding for NAC was inconsistent, depending on [changing?] federal government policy. The government funding allowed NAC to develop an infrastructure that permitted active but costly participation from the regions (women from every province and territory flew in on a monthly basis for meetings and working committees). There was, however, always a debate in NAC about whether to accept money from the government. On the one hand, it was argued that women pay taxes and have a right to have tax money redistributed to promote their aims and rights. On the other hand, it was argued that NAC needed to be fully independent so that the government could not pull the plug on their movement. NAC did, however, rely heavily on federal funding, which was problematic during its last years of existence. NAC’s core funding from the government was cut in half in 1988, which made membership fees and fundraising campaigns essential to NAC’s survival. By the 2000s, NAC was slowly becoming a less relevant feminist political advocate and has since completely disappeared from Canadian politics (Collier, Cheryl, p.17).

NAC, in its heyday, was instrumental in bringing women’s issues to the forefront of public discussion. NAC identified four issues as priorities when it began in 1972: the right to abortion, childcare, getting coverage for homemakers in the Canada Pension Plan and equal pay. By 1975, International Women’s Year broadened to equal pay for work of equal value, universal childcare, birth control accessibility, the right to abortion services, Family Law Reform, pension rights for homemakers and native women’s rights. During the 1984 Election, NAC’s efforts secured an unprecedented nationally televised debate on women’s issues. Also in the early 1980's, in reaction to the cutbacks from the Conservative’s federal budget, the Back On Track Campaign encouraged women to voice their disapproval with these detrimental moves to cut funding to essential groups. As well, NAC was vocal in lobbying for legislative and social change including Section 32 (b) of the Indian Act, changes to the Constitution in 1982, and equal pay for work of equal value. Other significant committees were formed and worked on issues like Survival of the Planet, Lesbian Rights, Justice, Immigrant and Visible Minority Women. When under the Immigration Act, domestics, many from Jamaica, were being deported after losing their jobs, NAC fought successfully to stop the deportations. NAC’s members’ efforts were successful also to get, improve and maintain unemployment insurance for women, and maternity and parental benefits as well as to lead the way in developing a coalition to fight free trade. NAC also supported several breakthrough legal cases, including that of Bonnie Robichaud on her complaint of sexual harassment. Bonnie Robichaud’s victory in finding the employer liable for harassment opened the door for many women to complain. NAC also supported Mary Pitawanakwat on her complaint about discrimination on the basis of race in the Secretary of State. It played a significant role in supporting her victory to be reinstated in her position. The beginning of the 90’s was marked by the case of Chantal Daigle and the Ecole Polytechnique Massacre.

Although NAC was not immune to controversy, or internal struggles, it managed to successfully represent hundreds of women’s groups in Canada. NAC became an important voice for women’s groups in Canada in the 70s into the 90s, and played an important role in raising awareness and effecting positive changes for women in Canada. NAC ceased existance in the late 2000s.

Conant, Verna Rowena (Smith) (1888-1992)

  • Persoon
  • April 23, 1888-May, 1992
Verna Rowena Conant (née Smith) was born on April 23, 1888, the daughter of Ernest Disraeli Smith and Christina Ann Smith (1861-1932). Her mother was the first President of the Women Institute of Canada in Winona Division, Ontario. She has one brother, Brigadier Armand Armstrong Smith. Verna Rowena Smith studied at Toronto's Havergal College and then lived in Ottawa where her father served as an MP. She met her future husband at her coming out party in 1911 at Hederleigh, the family House, in Grimsby, Ontario. She married Gordon Daniel Conant (1895-1953) on June 25, 1913, in Wentworth County, Ontario. Gordon Daniel Conant was a lawyer from Oshawa, future Mayor of Oshawa, attorney general of Ontario and Premier of Ontario from October 6, 1937 to June 30, 1943. While raising her family, Verna Rowena Conant became active in her community and organizations. She became Honorary president of the Oshawa General Hospital of the women's auxiliary, the Women's Institute, the Oshawa Historical Society and the Girl Guides. She played an important role with the St. John Ambulance and received the title of Dame of the Order of St. John. Verna Rowena Conant and her husband had 3 children; Geneviève, Douglas and Roger. Verna Rowena Conant died in Oshawa in May 1992 and is buried in Oshawa Union Cemetery.

Adamson, Nancy

  • Persoon
Nancy Lee Adamson was a professor, university administrator, and a founding member of the Canadian Women's Movement Archive Collective and its predecessor, the Women's Information Centre (WIC). She holds degrees from Mt. Holyoke College, Emory University, and the University of Toronto, receiving her PhD in 1983. At the University of Toronto, she established the Sexual Harassment Office and worked as a counsellor. From 1991 to 2000 she worked at Carleton University (Ottawa, Ont.) in the Status of Women Office and Equity Services. She is currently working in university administration in Belize.

Böhm, Emanuel

  • Persoon
  • 1909-1990

Dr. Emanuel Böhm was born on February 1, 1909 in Vrútky, Slovakia. The former professor of chemistry and natural sciences earned his Bachelor's degree in 1928, followed by his Master's Degree in chemistry and natural sciences between 1931 and 1934. In 1934, he received his Doctoral Degree from Charles University in Prague in the areas of chemistry, plant physiology, bacteriology and genetics.

Between 1934 and 1936, Dr. Böhm served as a Lieutenant of Heavy Artillery in the Czechoslovak Army. From 1936 to 1939 he taught in various colleges and technical high schools. In September 1939, after the annexation of southern Slovakia by Hungary, the Royal Hungarian Ministry of Education dismissed Dr. Böhm from his post for proclaiming the national and human rights of his people. Dr. Böhm as President of the Slovak National Unity served as spokesman for the 750,000 Slovaks residing in Magyarország during the occupation. During the war years, he worked in journalism and editing. He was the founder and editor of the Slovak language daily, Slovak Unity - Slovenská Jednota in Budapest while being editor of a newly established book publishing affiliate, Edicia Slovenskej Jednoty/Editions of Slovak Unity. Editor of 24 books published by the Guild of Slovak Unity, he was also a member of the Magyar Press Agency.

Following the war, Dr. Böhm resumed his teaching duties in Bratislava. In May 1946, he was elected to the Czechoslovak Parliament as a representative from Eastern Slovakia for the Democratic Party. He eventually served as Deputy Speaker of the Parliament in Prague, later serving as Health Commissioner in Bratislava.

Dr. Böhm and his wife Dr. Mária Dziaková, whom he married in 1941, went into exile in London in 1948 where he became chief chemist at Newlands and Rutherford Brothers. In 1952, the Böhms immigrated to the United States where he worked as Director of Research and Development with the Hoffman Company and later with Corn Products Corporation International. He was honored for his contribution to the food and beverage industries as well as for his research in chemistry. He held a patent on a machine he invented to analyze the contents of beverages. Dr. Böhm was a prolific scientific writer having published 35 articles on flavor and sweetener chemistry.

His life-long love for Slovakia and its culture became even stronger in exile. He served as Vice-President of the Slovenská Národná Rada v Zahranií /Slovak National Council Abroad. Active in Slovak cultural and political affairs, Dr. Böhm was awarded the Stefanik Medal by the Slovak American Cultural Center in New York for his work on behalf of his homeland. He and his wife were co-founders of Múza Tatier (Muse of the Tatras), an award that honors the cultural, scientific and artistic accomplishments of Slovaks and Slovak-Americans. He directed Slovak plays, was the creator of a Slovak Puppet Theater for Slovak children, and was an expert on Slovak folklore and its heritage. He published numerous articles in the Slovak press (both in English and in Slovak) at home and abroad. Dr. Böhm passed away on December 24, 1990 at the age of 81.

Hreha, Štefan

  • Persoon
  • 1918-2015

Štefan Hreha was born in Čemerné (near Vránov nad Topľou, Zemplín county), Slovakia on March 25, 1918. He was the first of Štefan Hreha and Maria Sabo's four children. He has two brothers Arpád (Albert) and Gejka (Jim) and a sister, Stella. Štefan Hreha met his future wife, Paulina, around 1940, in Montréal. They got married on June 22, 1946, when he returned from the army. They have one son, Štefan Robert Hreha.
Mr. Hreha came to Canada two days before Christmas in 1936. He studied at St. Patrick School and the Olier Academy and enthusiastically involved himself in the life of the Slovak community in Montreal. As early as 1937, he founded the L'udovit Literary Society, because he wanted to "propagate Slovak thinking and feeling" among the young Slovak people in the community. The Society organized plays, lectures and parties and a school for the Slovak youth born in Canada.

As the beginning of 1938, while he was still in school, he started working as an administrator and editor of the publication of Slovák v Kanade and later for Slovenské Bratstvo.

In 1941, during the Fifth Congress, the Canadian Slovak League (CSL) decided to start publishing their own newspaper. Štefan Hreha, "a young, courageous newspaperman" (Kirschbaum, 294), was the founding editor of Kanadský Slovák, and published its first issue on March 5, 1942. This newspaper became the only Slovak weekly to be published without interruption for more than sixty-five years. In August 1942, Hreha was drafted and spent three and half years in the army. Upon his return from the army, he was hired as administrator of the newspaper, and at the Windsor Convention, was re-elected as editor. He continued to work as an editor for Kanadský Slovák until 1952, when the newspaper moved to Winnipeg. Subsequently, Hreha worked as an advertising manager for Crane Canada for 32 years.

Štefan Hreha was an active member of the Canadian Slovak League (CSL)'s Montreal branch for a number of years, as well as of the First Catholic Slovak Union of the United States and Canada, Jednota. He served in various functions for the Canadian Slovak League (CSL) such as president of the Montréal branch and in the Central Assembly, as chairman of the overseers, and as recording secretary.

His cultural and literary contributions to Slovak heritage in Canada include stage plays, musicals' librettos, a cycle of poems and epigrams and a manuscript on the origins of Slovak people in Canada, for Encyclopedia Canadiana. As Anthony Sutherland indicates, Hreha "was one of the outstanding educated members of the Canadian Slovak League. Besides his editorial work he helped write several of the League's resolutions, was a poet and served in various League offices. He edited several issues of Pamätnice (Souvenir Books) and the KSL Calendar which is of historical importance to the Canadian Slovak community. Hreha also authored the lyrics for the musical Ked' príde nedeľa (When Sunday comes) and wrote several plays, among others, Za chlebom (In search of bread) and Turkovčaty (The Turks are here) produced in Montréal. There is also an unpublished manuscript for the musical Ruže v snehu nekvitnú (Roses do not bloom in the snow)." (Sutherland, 50).

Štefan Hreha pleaded for a Slovak newspaper to represent the Canadian Slovak League and to unite all Slovaks in Canada. Štefan Hreha's dedicated work within the Slovak community in Canada has been recognized in Canada and in Slovakia. The Canadian Slovak League presented him with a Jubilee Trophy and the National Ethnic Press & Media Council of Canada awarded with a medal and the citation Honoris Causa, for his lifetime achievements in journalism. He also received an Honorary Recognition from Slovakia from his native Vránov nad Topľou. Štefan Hreha passed away at the Jewish Hospital in Montreal on August 15, 2015 at the age of 97.

Kona, Martha

  • Persoon
  • 1930-2014
Martha Kona (nee Mistina) was born in Bánovce nad Bebrazou in Slovakia on May 12th, the daughter of Albert and Ann (née Kubican) Mistina. The family fled to Austria where Martha attended high school and a semester at the University of Salzburg. In the early 1950s, she received a scholarship to attend Rosary College at River Forrest in Illinois (USA).
She earned a B.A. in economics and German from Rosary College and met her future husband, Villiam Kona, a librarian, there. In 1955, the couple wed. In 1958 Martha Kona completed a Master's in Library Science and later completed an MBA at Roosevelt University (USA).
As a librarian, Martha Kona worked as the Assistant Director of Technical Services at Rush University Library (USA). From 1958 to 1963, she worked as a cataloguer-librarian at the University of Illinois Library of Medicine and Science (USA). She also published reference books and articles on various subjects such as soybean protein, multi-media cataloguing and Slovak Americans and Canadians.
Both Martha and Viliam Kona were committed to the Slovak community and the preservation of Slovak culture in exile. Martha Kona was part of the Slovak League of America, Slovak Catholic Sokol and the Slovak Institute in Rome (Italy). In 1990, Martha Kona held the position of Chair of Heritage and Communication at the Slovak World Congress, a position previously held by Ján Okáľ.
Over the years, Martha Kona has received several awards of distinctions. She has been the recipient of the Imperial and Sovereign Order of Saint Constantin the Great, the Imperial Byzantine Order of Constantin the Great and St. Helen and the Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, etc.
Martha Kona died in 2014.

Kandra, L’udovít

  • Persoon
  • 1904-1993
L’udovít Kandra (pseudonym: Peter Klas), was born in Banská Štiavnica, on July 6, 1904. Between 1914 and 1922, he completed his primary and secondary education in his local community. Between 1922 and 1924, he studied in Banská Bystrica where he obtained his teaching certificate from the Institute of Pedagogy. In 1928, he married Paula Päták. While working as a teacher, and later, as a school director, Mr. Kandra was already interested, and much involved, in Slovak cultural and literary life. In the Spring of 1945, Mr. Kandra and his family left Slovakia and emigrated to Austria where they lived until 1949. In 1949, the Kandras emigrated to Canada; with their two daughters, Dana and Olga. They lived in various Ontarian cities: Oil City, Glencoe and Kitchener.
After his arrival in Canada, Mr. Kandra worked for different employers including Electrohome Limited but he also began to write and publish his work. Most of his fiction work was published under the pen name of Peter Klas. He is the author of two published novels (“Satan proti Bohmu”and “Svetlo pod halenou”), a collection of short stories (“Na strome života) and hundreds of individual short stories published in various almanacs, calendars and newspapers. He became one of the prolific prose writers among Slovak immigrant.
L’udovít Kandra was also an author “on a political mission.” A determined activist, he used his talent as a great communicator to bring forth the horrors of the occupation of Slovakia and the hard life of Slovaks under communism. He published hundreds of articles on these issues in newspapers such as Kanadský Slovák, Slovák v Amerike, Kalendar Kandaskej Slovenskej Ligy, Slovenská Obrana and other Slovak periodicals abroad. In addition to his prose and poetry, L’udovit Kandra maintained an exchange of correspondence with members of the Slovak intelligentsia abroad, among others, Imrich Kružliak (pseudonym: Marian Žiar), Ernest Žatko (pseudonym: Ján E. Bor), Ignác Zelenka (Eugen Vesnin) and Michal Lošonsky (pseudonym: Michal Želiar).
Throughout his writing career, Mr. Kandra was also involved as a lobbyist and political activist in a number of nationalist organizations. Of particular significance were his extensive work and significant influence as vice-president and president of the Slovak National Council Abroad (Slovenská Národná Rada v Zahraniči. SNRvZ).
A devout Lutheran, Mr. Kandra also had a long and generous involvement with the “Ustredna Rada Martina Razus”, where he served as president.
In Slovakia, as well as in Canada, L’udovít Kandra was a very humble citizen. An elementary school teacher by profession, he took on blue-collar work as an immigrant living in Canada. He was not a member of the Slovak “intellegencia,” nor did he hold an elected political office. He lived as a man of limited financial means throughout his life, yet through his prolific work as poet, author and freelance writer, and through his extraordinary personal contribution as a member of the Slovak diaspora, L’udovít Kandra made a significant contribution to Slovak literature and has had a long-lasting impact on the cultural and social conditions of Slovaks living in exile. He died in Belleville, Ontario, in 1993, at the age of 89.

Frajkor, Ján Juraj (George)

  • Persoon
  • 1934-

Ján Juraj (George) Frajkor was born in Montréal, Québec on February 8th, 1934. He is the son of Ján Frajkor and Mária Onderik, Slovak immigrants from the village of Juskova Voľa in Zemplín, Slovakia. In 1961, he earned a degree in English and Economics at Concordia University in Montréal, Québec. Afterwards, he completed further studies in various subjects including biology, organic chemistry, botany and East European studies at McGill University, the University of Montréal, Carleton University and the University of Ottawa.

From 1972 to 1999, Ján Juraj (George) Frajkor was a professor of journalism at Carleton University, a subject he also taught at Comenius University in Bratislava. In addition to his work as a professor, he worked as a reporter and editor at various news agencies such as the Penticton B.C. Herald, the Canadian Press News Agency and the Canadian Broadcast Corporation (CBC). From 1999 to January 2011, Ján Juraj (George) Frajkor was also the Executive Director of Frajkor Enterprise.

A great supporter of the Canadian Slovak community, Ján Juraj (George) Frajkor has devoted his time and effort to various organizations. A member of the Canadian Slovak League (CSL) since the age of two, he has been its recording secretary and, from 2004 to 2007, its national president. He was also involved in the Slovak Canadian National Council (SCNC) and the Slovak World Congress (SWC). In addition to his work in various Slovak organization, Ján Juraj (George) has also published the newsletter "Slovotta" and was the chairman of the editorial committee of the newspaper "Kanadský Slovak," where he still publishes articles to this day.

Ellenwood, Ray

  • Persoon
  • 1939-
Ray Ellenwood est né à Edmonton en Alberta en 1939. Il a obtenu un Mater en Anglais de l'Université d'Alberta, puis un doctorat en littérature comparative (Comparative Literature) de l'Université Rutgers, l'Université d'État du New Jersey, aux États Unis. Son projet de recherche doctoral portait sur André Breton et Freud. Il a voyagé en France pour effectuer des recherches et rencontrer des personnes impliquées dans l'histoire du surréalisme, dont Jacques Baron. Il a fait de nombreuses recherches et a beaucoup écrit sur la littérature, la traduction et les arts visuels. Il a été professeur à l’Université de York, à Toronto de 1972 à 2005. Il est, entre autres, l'auteur d’"Egregore: A History of the Montréal Automatist Movement" publié en 1991. Il a publié plusieurs articles concernant les signataires de "Refus global", ainsi que des traductions de "Refus global", et de la poésie.
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