Showing 3 results

People and organizations
Women

Bigelow, Jane

  • Person
  • 1928 -

Jane Bigelow (1928 - ) was a politician and the mayor of London, Ontario from 1972 to 1978. She also served as controller on the city's Board of Control before and after her term as mayor.
She was born in Toronto in 1928 and educated at St. Clement's Girl's School and the University of Toronto where she completed a B.A. in Physical and Health Education in 1950. She trained as a teacher and taught in high schools in Ottawa, Hamilton and Edmonton.
After settling in London in 1965 with her husband and two children, she took courses at the University of Western Ontario towards a B.A. and began a master's program in urban studies. She participated in the founding of the Central London Association and the Urban League, a group that was designed to coordinate the efforts of local citizens' groups. She also became involved in the London Council of Women, serving on the committee which helped save the Broughdale Lands. Bigelow was active in local and provincial NDP organizations, serving as vice-president of the provincial party from 1968 to 1972. She organized several conventions for the party and was responsible for the Handbook for Municipal Politicians, published in 1968.
In 1969, she was elected to the Board of Control and when she was re-elected in 1971, she received the most votes out of all the controllers making her the deputy mayor. When mayor Fred Gosnell resigned for health reasons in February 1972 she took over as acting mayor. In March 1972, Bigelow was elected mayor by council and in 1973 she was elected mayor by the public in a general election. She was re-elected in 1974 and 1976 but was defeated in the 1978 election by Al Gleeson, an instructor at Fanshawe College.
As mayor, Jane Bigelow advocated for accessible day care, better public transit with special fares for senior citizens, neighbourhood improvement schemes, funding for the arts, more parks and better city planning. She was criticized for being uninterested in development. During her mayoralty, London received a triple A rating from two independent American organizations. In her last years of office, she became interested in financial planning and tax reform for municipalities. She was actively involved in several joint municipal-provincial organizations and represented London's interests at both higher levels of government. In 1974, she was invited with six other Canadian mayors to visit Israel and in 1976, she was a representative to the Habitat Conference and the Conference of Mayors held in Milan.
Some of the major issues during her term as mayor included the Talbot Square development, the London Regional Art gallery, the restoration of the Middlesex Court House and the possibility of siting a prison in London.
She was elected to the Board of Control in 1980 but did not run in 1982. She was later employed by Employment and Immigration Canada. She was honoured with several awards and recognitions for her public service.

London and Area Council of Women

  • Corporate body
  • 1894 -

The London and Area Council of Women was founded on February 14, 1894 as the Local Council of Women, London. In 1990, a motion was passed by the executive to change the name of the council from the London Council of Women (LCW) to the London and Area Council of Women (LACW). The objective of the council is, “To draw together the women of London in greater unity of thought, sympathy and purpose to further the application of the Golden Rule to society, for the development, improvement and happiness of mankind.” The logo of the council is a bow bearing the Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would that they do unto you.”
The LACW is comprised of individual members and members of its federated organizations which include women's groups, service clubs and volunteer organizations. The president of each federated organization is named a vice-president of the LACW executive and has a single vote. The executive of the LACW also includes a president, an executive vice-president and elected and appointed officers who hold positions such as treasurer, secretary, registrar and standing committee officers.
The LACW is part of a hierarchical organization of Councils of Women, answering to the Provincial Council of Women of Ontario (PCWO) and the National Council of Women of Canada (NCWC). The NCWC is a member of the International Council of Women (ICW).
Throughout its history, the LACW has held regular meetings and organized events to encourage political engagement, educate the public on various issues of importance to women, raise funds and promote culture and heritage. In addition to this, the LACW has been active in lobbying the municipal, provincial and federal governments. As a member of the PCWO and the NCWC, the LACW proposed resolutions which were debated, voted on and formalized into briefs which were submitted annually to the provincial and federal governments.

Western's Caucus on Women's Issues

  • Corporate body
  • 1980 -

Western's Caucus on Women's Issues was formed in 1980 to promote and safeguard the interests of women at the University of Western Ontario and its affiliates. Its objectives are: (1) to cultivate a sense of community among women at the university, (2) to encourage the integration of findings from feminist research into curricula at UWO and its affiliates and (3) to promote a work environment that facilitates the full professional development of all women employed at UWO and its affiliates.
The Caucus held lecture series, sponsored a women's studies essay award and hosted a brown bag lunch series to foster discussion. The group also produced several documentaries about the experiences of women and minority groups in post-secondary institutions including Breaking the Trust (1986), The Chilly Climate (1991), Backlash to Change (1996) and Voices of Diversity (2008).
In addition to this, the Caucus mobilized its membership around issues of importance to women, forming committees to address particular issues and to ensure that women would have meaningful input into initiatives undertaken by the university. The Caucus gave recommendations on the university's sexual harassment policy and race relations policy, submitted proposals for affirmative action/ employment equity and gave input during the university's strategic planning process.
The Women's Studies Committee of the Caucus on Women's Issues raised awareness about courses focused on women and ensured that library holdings supported women's studies. The committee compiled the “Directory of Women's Studies Courses” which, in the absence of a formal women's studies program, identified courses which fell into the realm of women's studies - courses which previously had not been identified as such. In 1981, courses identified as “women's studies” were offered for the first time.
The Caucus actively promoted employment equity (previously known as affirmative action) at Western, submitting in 1982 a brief on the status of women that contained a proposal for affirmative action. In 1986 Western received the Ontario government's employment equity award and in response to this, Constance Backhouse released the report, “Women faculty at UWO: reflections on the employment equity award.” Constance Backhouse researched the history of women at Western extensively in writing this report and conducted additional research on women at Western for the U.W.O. law archives and in preparation for celebrations marking 100 years of women at Western.