OTTAWA, January 21, 2019
Today, Canadians across the country are marking Lincoln Alexander Day, which commemorates one of the most highly respected figures in Canadian history. The Honourable Lincoln MacCauley Alexander was Canada’s first Black Member of Parliament, Cabinet minister, and Lieutenant-Governor of Ontario.
Born in Toronto in 1922 to immigrants from the Caribbean, Mr. Alexander dedicated his life to fighting for racial equality in Canada. Throughout his long and distinguished career, during which he served at both the provincial and federal levels, he vigorously defended the causes of education, race relations and youth. Rising above existing prejudices and racism, Mr. Alexander was instrumental in shaping the diverse and inclusive country we know today.
To honour Mr. Alexander’s remarkable achievements and unwavering commitment to serving his country and community, the Parliament of Canada designated January 21, the date of his birth, as Lincoln Alexander Day. Mr. Alexander died in 2012 in Hamilton, Ontario, and was given a state funeral.
As Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism, I encourage all Canadians mark Lincoln Alexander Day by learning more about the legacy of this great Canadian and about the significant role of Black Canadians in our country’s history.