Mount Saint Vincent University Honours 17 Inspiring Women

HALIFAX, March 28, 2013 /CNW/ - Community champion Ruth Goldbloom, OC, ONS, poet and songwriter Rita Joe, PC, CM, and Daurene Lewis, CM, accomplished politician, educator and artist, will soon be among the 17 Inspiring Women honoured in a permanent installation at Mount Saint Vincent University.

The Mount, founded for the continued education of women, will showcase each of their stories as a source of inspiration in the new Margaret Norrie McCain Centre for Teaching, Learning and Research. The McCain Centre will be the only building on a Canadian university campus dedicated throughout to honouring women.

"The Sisters of Charity established the Mount 140 years ago to give young women a place to learn and grow," says Dr. Ramona Lumpkin, president of the Mount. "We're very proud to keep that tradition alive today by celebrating women of all walks of life, including our founders, and sharing their inspiring stories with our community."

The installation has been made possible by generous donors, each choosing to recognize a woman who has inspired them. These donors include Jack, Colin, and Mickey MacDonald who collaborated to pay tribute to their mother, Belle MacDonald, and Elizabeth and Fred Fountain who honoured their friend Janet MacMillan, Partner with NATIONAL Public Relations.

"While the generosity of our supporters has been truly humbling, it has been their common belief that these women should, and will, be recognized that has propelled this project forward," says Dr. Lumpkin. "We're thrilled to shine a well-deserved spotlight on these impressive individuals."

The Mount's 17 Inspiring Women include Susan Clark, a trailblazing academic leader; the Community of the Sisters of Charity, founders of the Mount in 1873; Myra A. Freeman, CM, ONS, dedicated educator and the first female Lt. Governor of Nova Scotia; Dale Godsoe, CM, women's advocate and community volunteer; Ruth Goldbloom, OC, ONS, community leader, volunteer, and philanthropist; Martha Jodrey, OC, champion for children with learning disabilities; Rita Joe, PC, CM, Mi'Kmaw poet and songwriter; Aldéa Landry, CP, CM, businesswoman and former Deputy Premier of New Brunswick; Daurene Lewis, CM, the first black woman in Canada elected as Mayor; Belle MacDonald, devoted nurse and mother; Janet MacMillan, celebrated public relations professional; Joanne McCrea, dedicated community volunteer; the Honourable Nancy Ruth, CM, Senator, woman's advocate and philanthropist; Margaret Fawcett Norrie, the first woman Senator from Nova Scotia; Elizabeth Parr-Johnston, CM corporate leader and former president of the Mount; Rose Schwartz, businesswoman and Nova Scotia Business Hall of Fame inductee; and Annette Verschuren, OC, an outstanding business leader.

About Mount Saint Vincent University
Recognized as a leader in flexible education, applied research, and a personalized approach to education, Mount Saint Vincent University has been nationally recognized among undergraduate universities in Canada for our success in Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grants and for having one of the lowest student-to-professor ratios. The Mount is committed to being a model of creative teaching and research that nurtures socially responsible global citizens.  For additional information about the University, visit


Dr. Susan Apostle-Clark

Sponsored by The Honourable Senator Nancy Ruth, CM.

Dr. Susan Apostle-Clark, a leading academic in Canada, is a former Dean (Human & Professional Development) and sociology faculty member of Mount Saint Vincent University. She was instrumental in hiring the first incumbent of the Mount's Nancy's Chair in Women's Studies, and for the establishment of the Institute for the Study of Women (now the Institute for Women, Gender and Social Justice).

Community of the Sisters of Charity

Sponsored by the Sisters of Charity - Halifax.

The Sisters of Charity will honour all members of the community through one of the installations, showcasing the impact the Sisters have had in social justice, education, health services, and the spiritual community. True trailblazers for the advancement of women, all members of the community have been an inspiration and impacted the lives of many individuals around the world.

Dr. Martha Jodrey, OC

Sponsored by Bruce Jodrey.

As an educator and activist, it has been Dr. Martha Jodrey's personal passion to ensure that all students from Primary to PhD have a level playing field with an equal opportunity to advance their education and skills. Dr. Jodrey envisioned a system of support including the addition of the Mount's endowed Chair in Learning Disabilities to help ensure that no student will be lost. Her dream is now a reality.

Dr. Aldéa Landry, CP, CM

Sponsored by The John and Judy Bragg Family Foundation.

Dr. Aldéa Landry, CP, CM, received the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from Mount Saint Vincent University in 2004. Dr. Landry was the first Acadian woman to be appointed to the Cabinet of the Province of New Brunswick, and later served as Deputy Premier and President of the Executive Council. Increasing the level of education in the Acadian Peninsula has been one of her greatest passions.

Belle MacDonald

Sponsored by Colin, Jack, and Mickey MacDonald.

Daughter of a lobster fisherman, she was born on a remote island off Newfoundland. She passed Grade 12 by correspondence and became a registered nurse. Upon immigrating to Canada in 1945, she took charge of the Neonatal Unit at the Halifax Infirmary, restoring life and health to thousands of premature infants, and at the same time raising her seven children, teaching them her values of hard work, honesty, and love of family.

Margaret Fawcett Norrie

Sponsored by The Honourable Margaret Norrie McCain, OC, ONB.

Margaret Rosamond Fawcett Norrie was born in Upper Sackville, New Brunswick in 1905. Senator Norrie was appointed to the Senate of Canada for Colchester-Cumberland, Nova Scotia on April 27, 1972 following nomination by Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. She was the first woman appointed to the Senate in Nova Scotia and retired as Senator in 1980.

Janet MacMillan

Sponsored by Elizabeth and Fred Fountain, CM.

Janet MacMillan is a member of the first graduating class of Mount Saint Vincent University's Public Relations degree program ('81), and has continued to serve the University as a volunteer leader, mentor, and guest lecturer over the years, leading up to her recent position as Chair of the University's Board of Governors. She is a partner of NATIONAL Public Relations, a leading communications firm with deep roots in the region and country.

Myra A. Freeman, CM, ONS

Sponsored by Margaret McCain, OC, ONB; Annette Verschuren, OC; and anonymous donors.

Educator and former Lt. Governor of Nova Scotia Myra Freeman began her lifelong commitment to community service in her hometown of Saint John, New Brunswick. Sworn in as the first female Lt. Governor of Nova Scotia, she continues to play an important role in countless charities, boards and foundations, with a particular focus on youth-related issues. She was awarded the Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal in 2003, and appointed a Member of the Order of Canada in 2008.

Dale Godsoe, CM

Sponsored by Margaret McCain, OC, ONB; John Risley, OC; and anonymous donors.

Education, women's issues, arts and culture - these are but a few of the areas where Dale Godsoe's tireless commitment to creating positive change has been felt. From the Provincial Autism Centre to Symphony Nova Scotia, her leadership at the board level is beyond compare. A former Chair of the Mount's Board of Governors, she was awarded an honorary degree in 1997, and became a Member of the Order of Canada in 1998.

Ruth Goldbloom, OC, ONS

Sponsored by Friends of Ruth Goldbloom.

Ruth Goldbloom's unparalleled contributions to Atlantic Canadian communities will be felt for decades. Co-founding the Pier 21 Society in 1990, she went on to raise $16 million to build a museum on the pier that went on to earn a designation as a National Museum of Immigration in 2009. A former Chair of the Mount's Board of Governors, she has been awarded seven honorary doctorate degrees and held the position of Officer of the Order of Canada.

Rita Joe, PC, CM

Sponsored by BMO.

The Poet Laureate of the Mi'kmaq people, Rita Joe told the stories of Aboriginal Canadians throughout seven books published between 1978 and 1999. Bravely writing of her experience in residential schools, she sought to inspire others to adopt new, more positive views of minority groups. She was made a member of the Order of Canada in 1989, and was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the Mount in 1998.

Daurene Lewis, CM

Sponsored by Dale Godsoe, CM, and anonymous donors.

A former Executive Director of the Mount's Centre for Women in Business, Daurene Lewis was an accomplished politician, nurse, educator, and textile artist. Elected in Annapolis Royal in 1984, she became the first black female mayor in Canada before going on to lead several higher education institutions in the Halifax region.

Joanne McCrea

Sponsored by Ben McCrea.

Continuing a family legacy of community service and goodwill, Joanne McCrea is a tireless volunteer and the backbone of her family. A quiet advocate for many important causes in our community, her passion for helping others has been, and will continue to be felt across the region.

The Honourable Nancy Ruth, CM

Sponsored by friends of Senator Nancy Ruth.

The Honourable Nancy Ruth, CM, has truly become synonymous with women's advocacy in Canada. Founder of several organizations including the Women's Legal Education and Action Fund and the Canadian Women's Foundation, she is the inspiration behind the Nancy's Chair in Women's Studies, established at the Mount in the mid-1980s.

Dr. Elizabeth Parr-Johnston, CM

Sponsored by Emera.

From being the sole woman at the corporate board table to paving the way for countless women to pursue corporate governance roles, Dr. Parr-Johnston's dynamic career has been an inspiration. President of the Mount from 1991 to 1996, her impact continues to be felt on campus today. She was awarded the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada Medal, the Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal, and is a Member of the Order of Canada.

Rose Schwartz

Sponsored by Friends of Ruth Goldbloom.

Immigrated to Canada from Russia, Rose Schwartz settled in New Waterford, Cape Breton where she ran a successful family business, Schwartz Clothing. While contributing tirelessly to the well-being of her community, she also raised six children including, of course, Ruth Goldbloom. She was inducted into the Nova Scotia Business Hall of Fame in 2011.

Annette Verschuren, OC

Sponsored by Purdy Crawford, OC; Elizabeth Parr-Johnston, CM; and John McLennan.

Outstanding Canadian business leader and champion of corporate responsibility, Annette Verschuren has led major Canadian and international retailers. After co-founding Michaels by launching 17 stores in 26 months, she became the President of The Home Depot, overseeing the company's growth from 19 stores in 1996 to 180 in 2011. She was made an Officer of the Order of Canada for her role as champion for corporate social responsibility.

SOURCE: MSVU 2012-2013 Capital Campaign

For further information:

Ben Boudreau
Manager, Communications & Marketing
t: (902) 457-6439 c: (902) 441-0505

Profil de l'entreprise

MSVU 2012-2013 Capital Campaign

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