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Dr. Darlene Lewis

by Craig Smith

Dr. Daurene Lewis was born and raised in Annapolis Royal, Nova Scotia. She is a seventh generation descendent of Black Loyalist ‘s who settled in Annapolis Royal in 1783.


Lewis first entered political life in 1979, when she ran for a seat on the Annapolis Royal Town Council. In 1982, Lewis was appointed Deputy Mayor.


In 1984, Lewis was elected mayor of Annapolis Royal thus, becoming the first Black mayor in Nova Scotia and the first Black female mayor in Canada. In 1988 she entered provincial politics and was the first Black women in Nova Scotia to run in a provincial election.


She is also an accomplished textile artist and owned a weaving a design business in Annapolis Royal, for many years.


Lewis also holds a Master’s of Business Administration degree from Saint Mary's University. She has thirty years experience in the health care business, ranging from hospital staff, nurse to administrative positions in the provincial home care program.


Lewis trained as a registered nurse and graduated from Dalhousie University with a diploma of teaching in the schools of nursing.


Dr. Lewis has been the executive director of the Centre for Women in Business at Mount Saint Vincent University. Presently, Dr. Lewis is the principal for the Halifax Campus of the Nova Scotia Community College.


Dr. Lewis’ numerous awards include, 1993 recipient of an honorary degree from Mount Saint Vincent University, 1994 Black Cultural Centre’s Wall of Honour, 1995 Global Citizenship Award commemorating the United Nations 50th Anniversary, 1998 the Progress Club of Halifax Woman of Excellence award for Public Affairs and Communication, 2002 was YWCA volunteer award, 2002 Queen’s Jubilee Medal, and 2003 invested in the Order of Canada.

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