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Dr. Daurene E. Lewis

May 3, 2000

Daurene is a seventh generation descendant of Black Loyalists who settled in Annapolis Royal in 1783. In 1984, she was elected Mayor of Annapolis Royal, becoming the first black mayor in Nova Scotia, and the first black woman mayor in North America. In 1988, she entered provincial politics, and was the first black woman in Nova Scotia to run in a provincial election.

Dr. Daurene E. Lewis trained as a registered nurse, and graduated from Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, with a Diploma in Teaching in Schools of Nursing. Daurene also holds an MBA from Saint Mary’s University. She has 30 years experience in health care and business ranging from hospital staff nurse to administrative positions in the provincial home care program, textile artist and business owner to the Executive Director of the Centre for Women in Business at Mount Saint Vincent University.

    Daurene has an impressive list of volunteer experience and community involvement. This has included:

  • a founding member of the Valley Regional Hospital Foundation Board,
  • Board of Governors Nova Scotia College of Art and Design,
  • Board of Directors Black Cultural Centre,
  • Advisory Board Henson College’s Dalhousie County Project which promoted participation of Indigenous Black and Mikmaq individuals in municipal government

Daurene has also served on the executive of the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities, Gerontology Association of Nova Scotia, Advisory Committee to establish the Provincial Arts Council, and was appointed in 1992 to the Premier’s Monitoring Committee for the Implementation of an Economic Strategy. Daurene served on the National Advisory Committee and chaired the Nova Scotia fund raising committee to establish the James Robinson Johnston Chair in Black Canadian Studies at Dalhousie University.

Dr. Lewis’ numerous awards include, in 1993 was the recipient of an honourary degree from Mount Saint Vincent University, 1994, Black Cultural Centre's Wall of Honour, 1995, Global Citizenship Award commemorating the United Nations 50th Anniversary and in 1998 the Progress Club’s Woman of Excellence award for Public Affairs and Communication.

    Daurene is currently on:

  • the Board of Directors Canadian National Institute for the Blind, Nova Scotia-PEI Division,
  • Board of Governors Dalhousie University (Chair, Audit Committee),
  • Nova Scotia Barrister’s Society’s Bar Council Discipline Sub-committee and Formal Hearing Panelist,
  • Canadian Race Relations Foundation Advisory Board,
  • Minister of Justice’s (NS) Queen’s Counsel Selection Advisory Committee,
  • Board of Directors Metro United Way,
  • Board of Directors Prior Learning Assessment,
  • Board of Directors YMCA,
  • Provincial Health Council,
  • Board of metropolitan Immigrant Settlement Association (IEOP),
  • Black Business Initiative Board of Directors, and
  • Federal Advisory Committee on Supreme Court Judicial Appointments for Nova Scotia.

Daurene enjoys travel and has enjoyed several business/pleasure trips to Asia in recent years.

This feature was first published on’s predecessor site CoolWomen.


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