New building only one on a Canadian university campus dedicated throughout to honouring women

Halifax, NS – Community champion Ruth Goldbloom, OC, ONS, poet and songwriter Rita Joe, PC, CM, and Daurene Lewis, CM, accomplished politician, educator and artist, will soon be among the 17 Inspiring Women honoured in a permanent installation at Mount Saint Vincent University.

The Mount, founded for the continued education of women, will showcase each of their stories as a source of inspiration in the new Margaret Norrie McCain Centre for Teaching, Learning and Research. The McCain Centre will be the only building on a Canadian university campus dedicated throughout to honouring women.

“The Sisters of Charity established the Mount 140 years ago to give young women a place to learn and grow,” says Dr. Ramona Lumpkin, president of the Mount. “We’re very proud to keep that tradition alive today by celebrating women of all walks of life, including our founders, and sharing their inspiring stories with our community.”

The installation has been made possible by generous donors, each choosing to recognize a woman who has inspired them. These donors include Jack, Colin, and Mickey MacDonald who collaborated to pay tribute to their mother, Belle MacDonald, and Elizabeth and Fred Fountain who honoured their friend Janet MacMillan, Partner with NATIONAL Public Relations.

“While the generosity of our supporters has been truly humbling, it has been their common belief that these women should, and will, be recognized that has propelled this project forward,” says Dr. Lumpkin. “We’re thrilled to shine a well-deserved spotlight on these impressive individuals.”

The Mount’s 17 Inspiring Women include Susan Clark, a trailblazing academic leader; the Community of the Sisters of Charity, founders of the Mount in 1873; Myra A. Freeman, CM, ONS, dedicated educator and the first female Lt. Governor of Nova Scotia; Dale Godsoe, CM, women’s advocate and community volunteer; Ruth Goldbloom, OC, ONS, community leader, volunteer, and philanthropist; Martha Jodrey, OC, champion for children with learning disabilities; Rita Joe, PC, CM, Mi’Kmaw poet and songwriter; Aldéa Landry, CP, CM, businesswoman and former Deputy Premier of New Brunswick; Daurene Lewis, CM, the first black woman in Canada elected as Mayor; Belle MacDonald, devoted nurse and mother; Janet MacMillan, celebrated public relations professional; Joanne McCrea, dedicated community volunteer; the Honourable Nancy Ruth, CM, Senator, woman’s advocate and philanthropist; Margaret Fawcett Norrie, the first woman Senator from Nova Scotia; Elizabeth Parr-Johnston, CM corporate leader and former president of the Mount; Rose Schwartz, businesswoman and Nova Scotia Business Hall of Fame inductee; and Annette Verschuren, OC, an outstanding business leader.

About Mount Saint Vincent University

Recognized as a leader in flexible education, applied research, and a personalized approach to education, Mount Saint Vincent University has been nationally recognized among undergraduate universities in Canada for our success in Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council grants and for having one of the lowest student-to-professor ratios. The Mount is committed to being a model of creative teaching and research that nurtures socially responsible global citizens. For additional information about the University, visit


Visit our Inspiring Women Initiative to learn more about these 17 stories.
Download our Backgrounder for short bios, and donor information.

For more information contact:

Ben Boudreau
Manager, Communications & Marketing
t: (902) 457-6439 c: (902) 441-0505