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Landmark Merger Creates The Historica Canada Canada’s Largest History and Citizenship Organization
Toronto, September 8, 2009 - The Historica Foundation of Canada and The Dominion Institute are pleased to announce that they have merged to create The Historica Canada. This new organization, launched today, is dedicated to advancing history, citizenship and identity in Canada.
The landmark merger brings together two venerable charitable institutions: The Historica Foundation of Canada, founded in 1999 through the generosity of Charles R. Bronfman and Lynton "Red" Wilson, and The Dominion Institute, founded in 1997 by Rudyard Griffiths, the Hon. Michael Chong and Erik Penz. All of the co-founders will remain involved in The Historica Canada as members of the Board of Directors.
The new organization, which will operate in both official languages, becomes the country's largest independent advocate of history and citizenship.
The mission of The Historica Canada is to encourage the study of this country's history, to deepen its understanding of the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, and to promote a greater awareness of being Canadian. Among its programmes are Encounters with Canada, which brings thousands of high school students to the nation's capital each year to expose them to our national institutions; The Canadian Encyclopedia, the authority on all things Canadian, which receives millions of hits a year online; and The Memory Project, a speakers' bureau of 1,500 veterans who share stories of their service and sacrifice with young Canadians.
The Historica Canada is led by Andrew Cohen, who has been named president. Mr. Cohen is an award-winning journalist, best-selling author and professor of journalism and international affairs. He has worked in Washington, London and Berlin, and now writes a weekly column for The Ottawa Citizen, syndicated in Canwest newspapers. His books include While Canada Slept: How We Lost Our Place in the World and Extraordinary Canadians: Lester B. Pearson. He is joined by Marc Chalifoux, the former executive director of The Dominion Institute, who has been named executive vice-president.
"Today we launch The Historica Canada, with new leadership, new ideas and new resources," said Avie Bennett, the chairman of the Board of Directors. "We are delighted that our two organizations are one. This brings together the best of each. For the last decade, The Historica Foundation of Canada and The Dominion Institute have promoted history and citizenship in different but complementary ways. Through advocacy and innovative education programmes, public opinion surveys and public forums, books, film, radio, television, newspapers and the Internet, they have celebrated the country's experience, both present and past."
"The merged organization will not simply be one plus one equals two; it will be much more than that," said Mr. Penz, the retiring chair of Dominion Institute's Board of Governors. "The Historica Canada will be the voice of a new national effort to encourage Canadians to understand who they are and where they came from. The Historica Canada will reflect the best of its founding organizations. Through groundbreaking programmes, such as the widely popular Historica Minutes, Historica has reached millions of Canadians. Through its surveys, history report cards, books and projects with veterans, immigrants and aboriginal Canadians, The Dominion Institute has helped deepen our consciousness of Canada."
"We want to be the future of the past in Canada," said Mr. Cohen. "We will bring our message to the classroom and the public square. We will forge alliances with others who share our mission and our passion. In celebrating history and identity, we will champion a more aware, engaged Canada."
The head office of The Historica Canada is in Toronto, with operations in Ottawa and Edmonton. To find out more visit historica-dominion.ca.
The Historica Canada
The Historica Canada