Women of Impact interactive map

Women from coast to coast to coast have helped shape the country we live in. The interactive map below connects each of the Women of Impact in Canada to a geographical area of Canada associated with her personal or professional history. Explore the stories of remarkable women from your province or territory and those from other regions across Canada.

Women of Impact

Table of geographical areas of Women of Impact
City Women of Impact
Port Alberni, British Columbia Kim Campbell

Kim Campbell, Canada's first woman prime minister, was born in 1947 in Port Alberni.

Victoria, British Columbia Raven Lacerte Emily Carr Nell Shipman

Advocate Raven Lacerte, co-founder of the Moose Hide Campaign, is based in Victoria. Emily Carr, iconic painter and writer, and Nell Shipman, a pioneer in filmmaking, were both born in Victoria.

Vancouver, British Columbia Rosemary Brown Jennifer Gardy Karina Hayat Joy Kogawa Elsie Gregory MacGill Hide Hyodo Shimizu

Politician Rosemary Brown, scientist Jennifer Gardy, entrepeneur Karina Hayat, writer Joy Kogawa, aircraft designer Elsie MacGill, educator and activistHide Hyodo Shimizu and social activist Nellie Yip Quong have all called Vancouver home.

Burns Lake, British Columbia Cindy Blackstock

Cindy Blackstrock, Indigenous children’s rights advocate and member of the Gitxsan First Nation, was born in Burns Lake.

Chehalis, British Columbia Rose Charlie

Rose Charlie, a Sts'Ailes chief and Indigenous leader, was born on the Chehalis Reserve.

Surrey, British Columbia Rita Johnston

Rita Johnston, Canada's first woman premier, began her political career in Surrey.

Calgary, Alberta Elizabeth Cannon

Geomatics engineering expert Elizabeth Cannon was the first woman to lead the University of Calgary as its president.

Edmonton, Alberta Muriel Stanlsy Venne

Muriel Stanlsy Vennehas dedicated more than four decades advocating for equality for Indigenous women and children. She is the first Indigenous woman to have a provincial government building named for her, the Muriel Stanley Venne Provincial Centre in Edmonton.

Medicine Hat, Alberta Doris Anderson

Journalist, editor and feminist author Doris Anderson was born in Medicine Hat, but spent most of her working life in Toronto.

Saddle Lake Cree Nation, Alberta Nellie Carlson

Nellie Carlson, born on Saddle Lake Cree Nation, is a tireless promoter of Indigenous women's rights.

Fort MacLeod, Alberta Joni Mitchell

Legendary singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell was born in Fort MacLeod.

Limerick, Saskatchewan Lila Fahlman

Lila Fahlman, celebrated educator and social justice advocate, was born in Limerick.

Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Sylvia Fedoruk Alaa Burabit

Sylvia Fedoruk, Canadian physicist and medical researcher spent her career working in Saskatoon. Physician and international peace advocate Alaa Murabit grew up in Saskatoon.

Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, Saskatchewan Mary Greyeyes-Reid

Mary Greyeyes-Reid, the first Indigenous woman to join the Canadian Army, was born on the Muskeg Lake Cree Nation.

Piapot Cree First Nation, Saskatchewan Buffy Sainte-Marie

Acclaimed singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie was born on the Piapot Cree First Nation reserve in the Qu'Appelle Valley.

Prud'homme, Saskatchewan Jeanne Sauvé

While Jeanne Sauvé's distinguished career is strongly associated with Quebec, the former Governor General was born in Prud'homme.

Canora, Saskatchewan Sarah Ramsland Scythes

Politician Sarah Scythes was born and raised in Minnesota, settling near Canora in 1907.

Winnipeg, Manitoba Cora Hind

Journalist Cora Hind moved to Winnipeg in 1882, and soon became a correspondent for the Manitoba Free Press.

Neepawa, Manitoba Margaret Laurence

Novelist Margaret Laurence, author of Canadian classics The Stone Angel and The Diviners, was born in Neepawa.

Thompson, Manitoba Kate Rice

Explorer and prospector Kate Rice's copper and nickel discoveries led to the creation of the mining hub in Thompson.

Saint Boniface, Manitoba Marie-Anne Gaboury Gabrielle Roy

Marie-Anne Gaboury, Canada’s first woman voyageur, spent her final years in St. Boniface, which is also the birthplace of French-Canadian writer Gabrielle Roy..

Steinbach, Manitoba Miriam Toews

Author Miriam Toews was born in Steinbach, leaving for Winnipeg at age 18.

Toronto, Ontario Rosalie Abella Cheryl Arrowsmith Kit Coleman Ursula Martius FranklinAbby Hoffman

Supreme Court Justice Rosalie Abella, researcher Cheryl Arrowsmith, journalist and war correspondent Kit Coleman, physicist and professor Ursula Franklin, Olympian Abby Hoffman, physician and feminist Emily Howard Stowe, and journalist and activist July Rebick have all called Toronto home.

Kingston, Ontario Flora MacDonald

Flora MacDonald served as the Member of Parliament for Kingston and the Islands from 1972 until 1988.

Ottawa, Ontario Margaret Atwood Adrienne Clarkson Lotta Hitschmanova Mona Nemer

Margaret Atwood – world-renowned novelist was born in Ottawa. Adrienne Clarkson, the 26th Governor General came to Ottawa in 1942. Humanitarian Lotta Hitschmanova dedicated her life to USC Canada, headquartered in Ottawa. Mona Nemer was a researcher at the University of Ottawa before being appointed Canada’s Chief Science Advisor.

Mariposa Township, Ontario Elizabeth Bagshaw

Elizabeth Bagshaw, advocate for women's reproductive health, grew up in Mariposa Township in rural Ontario.

Hamilton, Ontario May Cohen Ellen Fairclough

Physician May Cohen co-founded the first-ever Women's Health Office at McMaster University in Hamilton. Politician Ellen Fairclough was born in Hamilton.

Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario Roberta Bondar

Roberta Bondar, space explorer and neurologist grew up in Sault Ste. Marie.

Wikwemikong First Nation, Ontario Jeannette Corbiere Lavell

Jeannette Corbiere Lavell, Indigenous women's rights advocate, was born into the Wikwemikong First Nation on Manitoulin Island.

Windsor, Ontario Mary Ann Shadd Cary Wafa Dabbagh

Mary Ann Shadd Cary, abolitionist and publisher opened a racially integrated school in Windsor. Wafa Dabbagh, a pioneer in the Canadian Armed Forces, began her career by mistakenly walking into a Windsor recruiting centre.

Webbwood, Ontario Barbara McCallum Hanley

Barbara Hanley was the first woman mayor in Canada when she was elected in Webbwood in 1936.

Exeter, Ontario Harriet Brooks

Harriet Brooks, pioneering physicist and student of Sir Ernest Rutherford, was born in Exeter.

Six Nations Reserve, Ontario Emily Pauline Johnson

Emily Pauline Johnson, writer and entertainer, was born on the Six Nations Reserve southeast of Brantford.

Curve Lake First Nation, Ontario Elsie Knott

Elsie Knott, pioneering First Nations chief, led the Anishinaabe Curve Lake First Nation until 1960.

Attawapiskat, Ontario Shannen Koostachin

Shannen Koostachin began a national movement for Indigenous education rights by advocating for a new school in Attawapiskat.

Lakefield, Ontario Faith Dickinson

Cuddles for Cancer founder Faith Dickinson was born and raised in Lakefield.

Port Arthur, Ontario Elizabeth Lawrie Smellie

Elizabeth Lawrie Smellie, nurse, teacher and Army colonel, was born in Port Arthur.

Dundalk, Ontario Agnes Macphail

Politician Agnes Macphail was born in Grey County, which is now the village of Dundalk.

Wingham, Ontario Alice Munro

Short story writer and Nobel Prize winner Alice Munro was born in Wingham, the setting of many of her stories.

Guelph, Ontario Linda Hasenfratz Esther Hill

Linda Hasenfratz is the CEO of Linamar, Canada’s second-largest automobile parts manufacturer, based in Guelph. Esther Hill, the first woman to earn an architectural degree in Canada, was born in Guelph.

Queenston, Ontario Laura Secord

War of 1812 hero Laura Secord settled with her husband in Queenston.

Coburg, Ontario Ann Augusta Stowe-Gullen

Trailblazing physician Ann Augusta Stowe-Gullen graduated from Victoria College in Cobourg.

Peterborough, Ontario Louise Fish

Military trailblazer Louise Fish is Director of Risk Management at Trent University in Peterborough.

Renfrew, Ontario Bertha Wilson

Bertha Wilson, lawyer and former Supreme Court Justice settled in Renfrew.

Cumberland, Ontario Cairine Wilson

Former senator Cairine Wilson was born in Montréal, settling in Cumberland after she married in 1909.

Québec City, Québec Marie-Claire Blais Léa Roback Gisèle Lamoureux

Novelist Marie-Claire Blais was born in Québec City, in the neighbourhood of Limoilou. Botanist Gisèle Lamoureux graduated from Université Laval with a master’s degree in Forest Ecology. Léa Roback was a union organizer who grew up in the Beauport borough of Québec City.

Saint-Bruno, Québec Thérèse Dallaire-Laplante

Thérèse Dallaire-Laplante, women's rights advocate, was born in Saint-Bruno.

Beauharnois, Québec Isabelle Hudon

Isabelle Hudon, an award-winning businesswoman and Canada’s Ambassador to France, was born in Beauharnois.

Chambly, Québec Emma Lajeunesse Albani

Emma Albani, international operatic superstar of the 19th century, was born in Chambly.

Abitibi, Québec Gabrielle Bouchard

Feminist advocate Gabrielle Bouchard, grew up in Abitibi, eventually relocating to Montréal.

Montréal, Québec Louise Arbour Nicole Brossard Thérèse Casgrain FrancoiseDavid Naomi Klein Betty Goodwin Heather Reisman

Montréal is the birthplace of lawyer Louise Arbour; feminist Nicole Brossard; social reformer Thérèse Casgrain; politician Françoise David; painter Betty Goodwin; journalist Naomi Klein and Indigo Books CEO Heather Reisman.

Saint-Étienne-de-Beauharnois, Québec Jeanne Brault Laurin

Jeanne Brault Laurin, Canada's first woman mechanic, spent her childhood in the family-owned garage in Saint-Étienne-de-Beauharnois.

Clarenceville, Québec Carrie Derick

Scientist and professor Carrie Derick was born in Clarenceville.

St-Timothée, Québec Suzanne Fortier

McGill Principal and Vice-Chancellor Suzanne Fortier was born in St-Timothée.

Odanak, Québec Alanis Obomsawin

Alanis Obomsawin, filmmaker and Indigenous rights activist, grew up on the Odanak reserve northeast of Montréal.

Saint-Marc-des-Carrières, Québec Chantal Petitclerc

Senator and Paralympian Chantal Petitclerc spent her childhood in Saint-Marc-des-Carrières.

Lac-Beauport, Québec Manon Rhéaume

Manon Rhéaume, champion goaltender and women's hockey pioneer, was born in Lac-Beauport.

Kahnawà:ke, Québec Mary Two-Axe Early

Mary Two-Axe Early was a courageous Indigenous rights activist from Kahnawà:ke.

Kuujjuak, Québec Sheila Watt-Cloutier

Sheila Watt-Cloutier, activist, author and political representative, was born in Kuujjuak, where she had a traditional Inuit upbringing.

Fredericton, New Brunswick Molly Lamb Bobak

Molly Lamb Bobak, painter, writer, teacher and printmaker, was a longtime resident of Fredericton.

Paquetville, New Brunswick Édith Butler

Acadian singer-songwriter Édith Butler grew up in the remote community of Paquetville.

Welsford, New Brunswick Gertrude Harding

Gertrude Harding was born on a farm in Welsford, leaving Canada in 1912 to join the militant suffragette movement in London.

Truro, Nova Scotia Portia White

World-famous operatic contralto Portia White was born in Truro, later and training at the Halifax Conservatory of Music.

Indian Brook, Nova Scotia Anna Mae Aquash

Anna Mae Aquash was a First Nations activist and teacher born into the Mi'kmaq First Nation at Indian Brook.

New Glasgow, Nova Scotia Viola Desmond Carrie Best

Civil rights crusaders Viola Desmond and Carrie Best both lived in New Glasgow.

Halifax, Nova Scotia Ann Divine Muriel Duckworth Margaret Meagher

Ann Divine helps empower women to achieve their business goals as CEO of Ashanti Leadership and Professional Development Services in Halifax. Muriel Duckworth, lifelong advocate for peace and women's rights, was a familiar face at Halifax anti-war rallies during her more than 50 years of activism. Pioneering diplomat Margaret Meagher was born in Halifax and began her career as a teacher there.

Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia Rose Fortune

Rose Fortune, Canada's first woman police officer, came with her family to Annapolis Royal at age 10.

Whycocomagh, Nova Scotia Rita Joe

Poet and songwriter Rita Joe, known as the Poet Laureate of the Mi'kmaq people, was born in Whycocomagh.

Abrams Village, Prince Edward Island Angèle Arsenault

Angèle Arsenault, acclaimed Acadian singer-songwriter and media personality, was born in Abrams Village.

Central Bedeque, Prince Edward Island Catherine Callbeck

Catherine Callbeck,former Premier of Prince Edward Island and the first woman elected to this position in Canada, was born in Central Bedeque.

New London, Prince Edward Island Lucy Maud Montgomery

Lucy Maud Montgomery, writer of the iconic Anne of Green Gables series, was born in New London.

North Rustico, Prince Edward Island Marion Reid

Marion Reid, politician and former Lieutenant Governor of PEI, was born in North Rustico.

St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador Armine Nutting Gosling

Armine Nutting Gosling, women's rights advocate, moved to St. John's in 1882 to become principal of the Church of England Girls' School.

Sheshatshiu Innu First Nation, Newfoundland and Labrador Elizabeth Penashue

Born near Churchill Falls, Innu elder Elizabeth Penashue was relocated to Sheshatshiu with members of her community in the early 1960s.

Grand Bank, Newfoundland and Labrador Grace Patten Sparkes

Grace Patten Sparkes, a teacher and political activist, was born in Grand Bank and spent her career in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Arviat, Nunavut Susan Aglukark

Award-winning singer/songwriter Susan Aglukark grew up in Arviat.

Cape Dorset, Nunavut Kenojuak Ashevak

Kenojuak Ashevak, pioneering artist, was born at Ikirisaq, and later settled in the burgeoning arts community of Cape Dorset.

Iqaluktuutiaq, Nunavut Tanya Tagaq

Tanya Tagaq, throat singer-songwriter and performer, was born in Iqaluktuutiaq before moving to Yellowknife as a teenager.

Fort Norman, Northwest Territories Ethel Blondin-Andrew

Ethel Blondin-Andrew, trailblazing politician and member of the Dene Nation, was born at Fort Norman.

Aklavik, Northwest Territories Nellie Cournoyea

Politician Nellie Cournoyea was born in Aklavik.

Tahiryuak Lake, Northwest Territories Helen Kalvak

Helen Kalvak, prolific artist chronicling the traditional lives of the Copper Inuit was born at Tahiryuak Lake, Victoria Island.

Ulukhaktok, Northwest Territories Mary Okheena

Mary K. Okheena, artist, printmaker and storyteller, was raised in the remote community of Ulukhaktok.

Dawson City, Yukon Martha Black

Canadian businesswoman, naturalist and politician Martha Black left high society to join the Klondike Gold Rush, moving to Dawson City in 1898.

Whitehorse, Yukon Ione Jean Christensen

Ione Jean Christensen, former Canadian senator, is a fourth generation Yukoner who moved to Whitehorse as a teenager.

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