In our current social and political climate, individuals like Dr. Deborah Stienstra are a necessity in communities to strengthen the voice of marginalized groups and advocate for change. Her extensive research and experience complement her humanity and compassion as she works with, women, and those with disabilities, Indigenous peoples and those from racialized groups. Not only does she boldly speak and collaborate with policy makers and fellow researchers, she also “works to create spaces for stories and insights to be shared”.
The University of Guelph is honoured to have Dr. Stienstra as our new Jarislowsky Chair in Families and Work and Director for the Centre for Families, Work and Wellbeing (CFWW).
“I feel a responsibility to engage with students, researchers, policy makers, and the public to share what I learn. My research partners are those who have seen the need to tell stories and advocate for change”, says Dr. Stienstra. Her focus is to “work for transformative inclusion so that diverse women and men with disabilities, Indigenous people, and girls and boys from around the world can participate in their communities and societies”.
Dr. Stienstra was previously at the University of Manitoba where she was a Professor of Disability Studies for 13 years. She held the Royal Bank Research Chair in Disability Studies as well as the Nancy’s Chair in Women’s Studies. As part of her commitment to community engagement she worked with Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women, Council of Canadians with Disabilities, National Action Committee on the Status of Women, Feminist Alliance for International Action and the Canadian Voice of Women for Peace.
The Jarislowsky Chair in Families and Work was the first such academic Chair in Canada to address the healthy integration of work and family responsibilities as critical economic and social policy issues. Particularly, it emerges out of the growing recognition for the importance of individual and family well-being as a foundation for economic growth and strong communities. The Centre for Families Work & Well-being provides an innovative, interdisciplinary research and educational centre responding to dramatic changes in family patterns, paid work, and broader economic and political structures.
As the Jarislowsky chair and the Director for Centre for Families, Work and Wellbeing Dr Stienstra will help the college achieve its vision to be a leader in world-class integrated scholarship that addresses critical complex issues facing our world.
About the Jarislowsky Chair position:
This endowed academic Chair position was established at the University of Guelph through a leadership gift to the University's campaign from the Jarislowsky Foundation, headed by Stephen A. Jarislowsky: Chair of the investment counsel firm Jarislowsky Fraser Limited, and an outspoken proponent of business ethics and accountability within corporate governance.
The Jarislowsky Chair in Families and Work was the first such academic Chair in Canada to address the healthy integration of work and family responsibilities as critical economic and social policy issues. Particularly, it emerges out of the growing recognition for the importance of individual and family well-being as a foundation for economic growth and strong communities.
The College of Social and Applied Human Sciences wishes to extend a special thanks to Stephen Jarislowsky of Montreal for support through the Jarislowsky Foundation.