Rosemary Brown

Rosemary BrownPCOCOBC, née Wedderburn (June 17, 1930 – April 26, 2003), was a Canadian politician. She served as a Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) in the British Columbia legislature from 1972 to 1986, making her the first Black Canadian woman to be elected to a Canadian provincial legislature.

In 1975, she became the first black woman to run for the leadership of a Canadian federal party (and only the second woman, after Mary Walker-Sawka), finishing a strong second (with 41+% of the votes on the fourth and final ballot) to Ed Broadbent in that year’s New Democratic Party leadership convention. After departing politics, she became a Professor of women’s studies at Simon Fraser University. In 1993, she was appointed Chief Commissioner of the Ontario Human Rights Commission, and served until 1996. In 1995, she was awarded the Order of British Columbia and in 1996 was named an Officer of the Order of Canada. Brown was sworn to the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada as a member of the Canadian Security Intelligence Review Committee from 1993 to 1998. This board is the overseer for the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, or CSIS. She also served on the Order of Canada Advisory Committee from 1999 until her death in 2003.

She died of a heart attack on April 26, 2003 in Vancouver, British Columbia.

‎Canada Post featured Brown on a Canadian postage stamp released on February 2, 2009.[1]

Rosemary Brown