The Alexa McDonough Women’s Leadership Centre is a living repository for the stories – stories of success and triumph – of the women who have fought so hard over many decades, and those who continue to fight for justice and social democracy today.

Alexa McDonough, a social worker by trade and a leader in Canadian social democracy, was the first woman to lead a major political party when she led the Nova Scotia New Democratic Party from 1980 to 1994. After a successful run in provincial politics, McDonough was elected leader of the New Democratic Party of Canada. She remained leader from 1995 to 2002.

In coordination with the McDonough family, to honour Alexa's work, which embodied social democratic values and paved the way for so many women, the Douglas Coldwell Layton Foundation will be launching the 'Alexa McDonough Women's Leadership Centre.'

The Centre will include: new research and reports by women and focused on women‘s issues; provide biographies and stories of past and current women leaders who have moved our country forward in politics, labour, and activism; and an archive of photos, videos, and publications made available for public consumption and use. New leadership training events and opportunities will also be available to women through this new Centre.

On June 8th, the Douglas Coldwell Layton Foundation launched our new online Alexa McDonough Women’s Leadership Centre and unveiled the new branding to carry Alexa’s legacy into the future. As part of the launch, we have posted the leadership profiles of three trailblazing social democratic women.

Rosemary Brown Agnes Macphail Alexa McDonough

Audrey McLaughlin Shirley Douglas


If you would like to make a contribution to the Alexa McDonough Women's Leadership Centre, please click here.



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