1997 Recipients

Dr. E. Margaret Fulton
Salt Spring Island, British Columbia

As a teacher, educational administrator, and outstanding advocate of women's rights, she has sought an equal place for women in a better society characterized by innovative learning, partnerships and inclusive decision-making. While Dean of Women at the University of British Columbia and President of Mount St. Vincent University, she introduced equality studies and degree programs specifically attuned to employment opportunities for women. The creator of Mount St. Vincent's Institute for the Study of Women and its Centre for Excellence in Women's Studies, she has also worked to establish programs to help women hampered from pursuing post-secondary education because of limited resources, isolation and family responsibilities.

Sheila D. Genaille
Edmonton, Alberta

A sixth-generation Metis, she has demonstrated her tireless strength as a leader and as a catalyst of the movement to respect and nourish the rights and aspirations of the women of Canada's Metis nation. As President of the Metis National Council of Women, she has been an effective advocate for a greater role for Metis women in promoting and developing policies to improve their situation. Through her leadership and her belief in community-based approaches, Metis women are strengthening their identity as Aboriginal women and are addressing the many barriers they face in achieving true equality.

Hedwidge Landry
Caraquet, New Brunswick

A community activist and advocate of the interests of Acadian women, her focus has been on empowering women, especially young women, to take control of their lives and to be active participants in society. A leading member of several organizations including Les dames d'Acadie, l'Association des collaboratrices et partenaires en affaires, and la Fédération nationale des femmes canadiennes-françaises, she has been instrumental in organizing programs for adolescent girls, political action sessions for women, a women's health project in partnership with the provincial government, and training sessions for women on a variety of economic issues.

Nancy Ruth
Toronto, Ontario

Canada's pre-eminent feminist philanthropist, she has been a determined equality-seeker and an effective force for substantive and lasting change for the benefit of women. The founder of many organizations dedicated to women's advancement, including LEAF, the Canadian Women's Foundation, the Charter of Rights Coalition, the CoolWomen Web site, and Nancy's Very Own Foundation, she has been, and continues to be, a visionary, a leader, a tireless worker, a generous donor, fund-raiser and mentor in the cause of women's achievement of equality.

Dr. Marguerite E. Ritchie, Q. C.
Ottawa, Ontario

For more than 50 years, she has used her legal training and knowledge to promote the human rights of women in all areas of society. These activities have placed her centre stage at some of the most significant struggles in women's history over the past five decades. Her pioneering initiatives include direct involvement in changes to the discriminatory aspects of federal laws and regulations in the areas of public service hiring and employment, jury selection and divorce residency provisions. She has also been legal advisor to the Royal Commission on the Status of Women, to Aboriginal women in their landmark efforts to secure equal rights, and to other individuals and organizations working to advance the status of women in Canada.

Date modified: