ABOUT THE GWCA
The Great War Centenary Association, Brantford, Brant County, Six Nations is a registered charitable organization founded in 2013 with the following objectives:
- to preserve and make available to the public, a permanent and evolving record of our community's involvement during the First World War;
- to disseminate original research using print, digital, and other media in order to make it easily accessible;
- to encourage and connect with the youth of Brantford, Brant County and the Six Nations through a series of educational programs, social media outlets, web portals and interactive community events;
- to encourage the members of our community to take an active interest in their own local history and to encourage acts of remembrance;
- to partner with local school boards, educators, businesses, organizations and government agencies to share this research with the community;
- to partner with national and international associations that will be commemorating the centenary of the First World War in order to share knowledge.
Board of Directors
Geoffrey Moyer – President
Geoffrey has been with the Brantford Public Library for over 15 years who specializes in local history and digital archiving. His personal interests lie in his communities’ involvement during the Great War and how it impacted his community following the armistice. Utilizing the Brantford Expositor and Brantford Courier newspapers, he has collected and transcribed thousands of pages of information covering various themes specific to Brant County. Some of his ongoing research includes: The men and women who served from Brantford, the County of Brant and the Six Nations; The Brant Patriotic and War Relief Association; Brantford Industry; The Brant Recruiting League; The Conscription Crisis; Union Government and Local War Memorials. For the last 8 years, Geoffrey has given presentations to various organizations and high school students dealing with Brantford, the County of Brant and the Six Nations during the First World War. Additionally, he has helped to instruct students from the Brantford Collegiate Institute how to research those who served from their school during both World Wars.
Peter Farrugia – Vice President
Peter is an Associate Professor in the History and Society Culture & Environment programs at the Brantford Campus of Wilfrid Laurier University. His research interests lie in 19th and 20th century Britain and France, particularly the study of war and peace, as well as the history of Brantford. I am especially interested in history and memory as it relates to the First World War. My current research explores the impact of two of the world's preeminent museums – the Imperial War Museum London and l'Historial de la Grande Guerre in Péronne, France – on perceptions of the Great War in Britain and France. His most recent publications include a study of the impact of pacifist writers Jean de Bloch and Norman Angell prior to 1914 (for the journal Francia), an examination of the use of monuments by local elites to promote a specific image of the City of Brantford (special edition of the Journal of Canadian Studies) and an exploration of the influence of L'Historial on the historiography of World War I in its first twenty years of existence (appearing in Laurier's own Canadian Military History).
Meghan Cameron – Treasurer
Meghan received her Honours History BA from Acadia University (1999) and then her MA (2001) in history from the University of Guelph before entering the teaching profession in 2002. Having taught secondary school civics, history and social sciences since then, she has wanted to contribute to her community and share her love of history. As a member of the GWCA, Meghan enjoys learning about local history while also helping her local community to remember its exceptional history as it pertains to the Great War. She has provided written contributions to the GWCA website and is also responsible for helping teachers develop activities and resources through the use of the site. In the future, she hopes to write and speak more about the area’s rich World War One history.
Vincent Ball – Director
Vincent is a graduate of the Master's journalism program at the University of Western Ontario and Glendon College, York University, Vincent Ball has been a reporter at The Expositor for the past 25 years. Now covering the police and business beat for The Expositor, Ball previously covered health, social services as well as education. In addition to writing stories, Ball produces videos for The Expositor's website and writes For What it's Worth, a weekly column. After work, Ball trains in the martial arts and works on other writing projects including one detailing the contributions of Brantford, Brant County and Six Nations to the First World War.
Evan Habkirk – Director
Evan is a Ph.D. candidate in the University of Western Ontario's History Department, with a teaching assistantship in the University's First Nations Studies Program. His current research interests include Six Nations of the Grand River Territory's role in the War of 1812, Rebellions of 1837-38, the Fenian Raids, and the First World War, the practice of First Nations traditional culture in the face of colonialism, cross-cultural exchanges between First Nations and colonial powers, and Canada's residential school policy. He received his MA from Trent University in 2010 with his thesis, Militarism, Sovereignty, and Nationalism: Six Nations and the First World War and is currently working on his Ph.D. thesis entitled Co-opting Militarism: Changes in Six Nations Militarism, 1814-1914, and explores the changes and continuation of Six Nations militarism from the end of the War of 1812 into the First World War.
Paula Whitlow – Director
Paula is from the Six Nations of the Grand River territory, and member of the Mohawk nation. She has spent half of her life in the museum field; beginning at the Woodland Cultural Centre as Assistant to the Registrar, then onto Chiefswood National Historic Site as Curator/Manager. She recently returned to Woodland Cultural Centre as Museum Director in 2011. Her interests lie in museology, history, heritage and culture. Just recently Paula curated the Six Nations’ commemoration of the Great War with an exhibition titled, ‘Veterans, Warriors and Peacekeepers.’ Within that exhibition more historical information and artifacts were uncovered resulting in a rich mosaic of Six Nations’ history comprehensively documented at the Woodland Cultural Centre. She continues to work with others interested in showcasing First Nations contributions during WW1. Paula sits on a number of boards and committees related to commemorative events, archives, genealogy, and Great Lakes research. Her academic pursuits began in a completely different field; attaining a double diploma with honours in native mental health and substance abuse. At the encouragement of her favourite art teacher, she delved into museum studies first in Peterborough, and then continuing on with the Ontario Museum Association, and Parks Canada’s cultural resource management courses.