About us - the who and why
While a leader in the Ottawa Area Girl Guides in the 1990's, the part of the Guiding Program on Famous Canadian women was not an easy area to research. Dawn Monroe developed a series of activities for her own Guide unit. Other leaders asked for copies of the activities. It saved Guide leaders a lot of individual work to share these activity pages. Wanting to learn more about web pages on the internet Dawn decided to do something practicable as a learning project. Famous Canadian Women was born!! The idea of using birthdays as a way of interesting young people in Canadian Women of achievement came next. It proved to be an interesting challenge. As the fun of research progressed, the amount of information accumulated did not always provide birth dates. How else could this knowledge of Canadian women be shared? What ways would be fun for people to learn about Canadian women? Stamp collecting is the world's most popular hobby? Why not cash in on a trend? In the main database there were lots of first achievements so Famous Firsts was set up. Timelines and quotes are always fun so they were added in 2004. Still more names existed in the ever growing research pages. The desire to post information on more women saw the section On-The-Job set up as the main information file in the fall of 2004. The fun and challenge of researching for more information on accomplished Canadian women from history continues... who knows what can be posted...
October 27 1945, Toronto, Ontario. The local public library started out as a
library room in her house when she was growing up and progressed to be part
of Scarborough Public Libraries. (now Toronto public Library). Dawn earned her weekly allowance
and had her first student job working at the Highland
Creek Public Library. After
studying Canadian history at the University of Guelph, she attended the Library School at the University of Western
Ontario earning a Master's Degree. Hired by the federal government in
Ottawa, Dawn worked at
the National Library of Canada before moving to the Library at the National
Archives of Canada. In 1991 she began working for Employment and
Immigration Canada and ended her career by working as Manager, Library
Services Citizenship and Immigration Canada. On the leisure side of life she
was introduced to the sport of archery while at university and this would bring her to meet
her husband Jerry Monroe, whom she married in 1974. She taught and
coached archery to youth at the RA Centre from 1972 through 2000. Her in
Girl Guides interest was
reactivated when her own two daughters became Brownie age.
Retiring from the Canadian government in 2004, Dawn enjoyed continuing
researching and working on her web site, and
being with her family that now included a new generation. Dawn and Jerry
relocated to Cochrane, a small town in Northern Ontario, in 2006 where Dawn
worked as C.E.O. of Cochrane Public Library for a year and a half. Volunteering is still part of life for Dawn. She has served on the Cochrane
Centennial Committee (2009-2010), the Cochrane Board of Trade (2006-2012), the Cochrane Agricultural Society (2006-2013). In the fall
of 2010 and again in 2014 Dawn ran unsuccessfully for Town Council but
thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Since 2005 Dawn has served as a volunteer costumed
historical interpreter at the Cochrane Polar Bear Habitat and Heritage
Village where she edited and produced the Heritage
Village Herald for five years.
In 2018 she became president of the United Church Women of Manitou
Conference (now Canadian Shield U C W which covers Northern Ontario)
In 2022 Dawn was pleased to have reached 4,100 'mini bios' on the Famous
Canadian Women web pages. According to Dawn this is only scratching the
surface of Canadian women of accomplishment and so the research continues...
Jerry Alan Monroe. Born December 31, 1943, Toronto, Ontario. Raised in downtown Toronto, Jerry left school early in search of a career. He married for the first time on his 19th birthday and held various jobs in the cartage industry and as a printer. He had also become the father to three children. Divorced, he started out on his own path again and met a woman interested in the sport of archery. Deciding to take up competitive archery he also decided to marry the archer he had met. After their two daughters were born, he became "Mr. Mom" and maintained a craft and engraving business as working hobbies. He took an interest in home computing and learned from reading and doing until he obtained a proficiency with web sites. He has always enjoyed reading and learning and is currently having fun with e-bay sales and having Dawn home with him. He also enjoys being grandpa to granddaughters from his 1st marriage and being a special "Poppa" to his two grandsons. He manages the web sites for Famous Canadian Women. He is enjoying being Grandpa to his 8 grandchildren and is accepting the fact that he is also now a great-grandpa.