Two faculty members help select Viola Desmond for new bill

Johanthan Rose (left), Barbara Crow (right).
Journal File photo

Starting Monday, Canadian civil rights icon Viola Desmond will be the new face of the $10 bill.

A panel of experts chose Desmond for the honour. The group included Queen’s professor Johnathan Rose and Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences Barbara Crow, according to a statement released by the University on Monday. 

“A currency is a public expression of national identity so it’s only appropriate that citizens should have an important role in deciding who should be on it,” Rose said in a statement.

According to the statement, both Rose and Crow said the bill’s introduction is a “turning point in Canada’s narrative.” 

Recognized for her 1946 stand against racial segregation in Nova Scotia, Desmond will be the first Canadian-born woman to be featured on a Canadian bank note. That year, she was famously arrested after refusing to leave a whites-only section in a movie theatre. The incident became the focal point of one of the highest-profile civil rights cases in Canadian history.

“What I think is incredible about the choice is that all of us can stand up to injustice, and [Desmond] did. Every single Canadian can stand up,” Crow said.

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