The Honourable Flora MacDonald
Following many years of distinguished leadership in federal politics, Flora MacDonald, P.C., C.C., O.Ont., O.N.S., has devoted herself to improving the lives of others in Canada and around the world. Through her humanitarian work—particularly in the areas of human rights, peace, human security, refugee advocacy, environmental conservation, and social and international development—she has become a leading figure in the movement to alleviate human suffering worldwide.
In 2007, she founded Future Generations Canada, a registered not-for-profit organization committed to teaching and enabling sustainable community change. FGC integrates environmental conservation with development, and is designed to facilitate three-way partnerships among communities, government, and nongovernmental organizations.
Her work has been recognized by numerous awards: the Jordanian El Kawkab Medal by King Hussein for significant contribution to public service, 1993; Companion of the Order of Canada, 1998; the Pearson Peace Medal 1999; the Churchill Society’s Award for Excellence in the Cause of Parliamentary Democracy, 2002. In 2004, she received the Padma Shri Award (India’s highest award to civilians) from the President of India for distinguished service in the field of public affairs—the first Canadian to be accorded this special recognition.
Flora MacDonald has served as a chair on the board of organizations, including: the International Development Research Centre (1992-1997), HelpAge International (1996-2001), Shastri Indo-Canada Advisory Council (1997-2004), the World Federalists of Canada (2000-2004), Partnership Africa Canada (2002-2004). She is also a member of the Carnegie Commission on the Prevention of Deadly Conflict, and Doctors Without Borders. Currently she is on the board or advisory council of the following organizations: Canadian Council for Refugees, CARE Canada, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (Patron), Friends of the Library and Archives Canada, Partnership Africa Canada, UNIFEM Canada, iEARN-Canada, World Computer Exchange, and National Museums of Scotland.
Among her many achievements, in 1979, the Honourable Flora MacDonald became the first woman in Canadian history to serve as Secretary of State for External Affairs, in Prime Minister Joe Clark’s government. She has also served as Minister of Employment and Immigration (1984-1986), and Minister of Communications (1986-1988). She holds honourary degrees from a number of universities in Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom.
-- Bio of Flora MacDonald as published on the 2008 Sol Kanee Poster.
The 2008 Sol Kanee Lecture for Peace and Justice took place on November 19, 2008.
The Honourable Flora MacDonald presented on the topic "Peacebuilding, Development, Hope...The Other Afghanistan."
The transcript of the lecture can be found here: 2008 Sol Kanee Lecture transcript