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History of the Labrador Society


small twig marker The seeds of the Labrador Society were planted back in March of 1990 when Bill Rompkey invited Nora Terriak and Ruby Michelin-Fournier to his office on Parliament Hill to plan a "Labrador Night". That first "Labrador on Parliament Hill" evening was held on April 9, 1990.

Small twig marker The December 2004 "Christmas on Parliament Hill" evening marked the fifteenth year that Bill, along with the Labrador Society, welcomed Labradorians and friends of Labrador to the yearly Parliament Hill social.

logo During 1990, Bill, Ruby, and Nora had tentative discussions regarding the formation of a "Labrador Association of Ottawa", and it was decided that a steering committee be formed with the goal of developing the association's organization.

logo In the spring of 1991, nearly seventy people attended the first Labrador Reunion/Social which was held at the Newfoundland Pub. At this meeting Bill explained the underlying, serious intent of the gathering: "the desire to form some sort of an association which could help or encourage the promotion and visibility of Labrador arts and artists.

logo A steering committee consisting of Mike Martin, Ernie Davis, Jeannette and Dave Waters, Sam Metcalfe and Ruby Michelin-Fournier was formed and during the autumn of 1991, they met several times to discuss the setting up of the association and to get the association off the ground. The "Labrador Society" was officially launched November 10 1991, and was led by Mike Martin for a number of years, establishing a strong and lasting foundation.

logo First Board of the Society

President: Mike Martin
Vice President: Ruby Michelin-Fournier
Secretary: Karen Brinson
Treasurer: Hannie Fitzgerald
Directors: Ernie Davis, Jeannette Waters, Patricia Martin, Gill Michelin, Sam Metcalfe.
Caroline Rompkey became a director in May 1992.

Other First Meeting Attendees: Lloyd Brinson, Jerry Fitzgerald, Adrian Michelin, Siegfried and Frieda Hettasch, Charlotte and Otto Madsen, Allan and Rita Michelin, Cora and Herman Jensen, Dorothy and Garth McElree, Dave Waters.

logo The next Labrador Reunion/Social evening, following the official start of the society was in March 1992, held at the Canadian Forces Base Rockliffe.