Daily Almanac for Saturday, November 26, 2022

On this date in 1997,Thelma Chalifoux was the first Metis woman to become a Canadian senator (Alberta) Here is Thelma Chalifoux (file photo)


Thelma J. Chalifoux (February 8, 1929 – September 22, 2017) was a Canadian teacher and senator.

Métis Association

Chalifoux joined the Métis Association in the late 1960s during the early growth of local-level activism within Métis communities. Upon joining, Chalifoux strove to fix major issues affecting the Metis by advocating within governmental bodies. She argued that there were inadequate levels of social welfare programs despite clear indications that Métis communities were among a large majority of those in Canada not meeting their basic needs. Chalifoux, advocated for the increase of affordable shelter, food, and higher welfare grants and subsidies for Métis families. She later focused her efforts on the formation of the Welfare Unit, a group of investigators that looked into complaints concerning the Alberta Government Welfare Department’s dealings with Métis communities and families. Her efforts exposed welfare injustices like those that occurred at Fort Chippewa concerning the lack of funds given to various families in desperate need of assistance. Her investigations revealed accounts like that of a widow parenting “five children [and was given] $60 a month to live on.” She took a special interest in helping disadvantaged Métis women who had fallen through the cracks of government bureaucracy and otherwise would have remained voiceless.


Chalifoux was appointed to the Canadian Senate on the advice of Prime Minister Jean Chrétien on November 26, 1997, making her the first Indigenous woman and fourth Metis person to serve in the Canadian Senate, following Richard HardistyWilliam Albert Boucher, and Gerry St. Germain. She held the position until 2004 when, at the age of 75, she retired and returned to Alberta. The following year Alberta Venture magazine ranked her number 8 on their list of 50 Greatest Albertans.

After her retirement, she founded the Michif Cultural and Resource Institute now the Michif Cultural Connections Company, an organization dedicated to preserving and sharing Métis history of Alberta. Chalifoux was the first woman to receive the National Aboriginal Achievement Award – known today as the Indspire Award – in 1994.

Chalifoux died at the age of 88 surrounded by her family on September 22, 2017, after a period of failing health.

On May 8, 2018, the Edmonton Public School Board of Trustees voted to name the new Thelma Chalifoux School (grade 7- 9) in Larkspur in her honour.

(courtesy Postertech.com)


Question of the Day

Is there a level of caffeine that could kill a human being?

Yes. A lethal dose is 10 grams, or about 100 cups of coffee consumed within 4 hours.

Advice of the Day

Misfortunes and twins never come singly.

Home Hint of the Day

Did you run out of toilet-bowl cleaner? Substitute household (5 percent) bleach or vinegar.

Word of the Day


Civilian garb as opposed to a military uniform.

Puzzle of the Day

Why is the horse the most curious feeder in the world?

He eats best when he has not a bit in his mouth.


  • Mary Walker (doctor) – 1832
  • Karl Ziegler (chemist) – 1898
  • Frances Dee (film star of the 1930s and 40s) – 1907
  • Cyril Cusack (actor) – 1910
  • Eric Sevareid (newscaster) – 1912
  • Charles Schulz (creator of Peanuts comic strip) – 1922
  • George Segal (sculptor) – 1924
  • Robert Goulet (actor) – 1933
  • Tina Turner (singer) – 1939
  • Bruce Paltrow (director & producer) – 1943
  • John McVie (musician) – 1946
  • Dale Jarrett (race car driver) – 1956
  • Natasha Bedingfield (singer) – 1981
  • Trevor Morgan (actor) – 1986


  • Tommy Dorsey (bandleader) – 1956
  • Stan Berenstain (co-creator of The Berenstain Bears book series) – 2005


  • The first lion was exhibited in the U.S., in Boston, MA– 1716
  • Oldest social college fraternity in continuous existence, Kappa Alpha Society, founded at Union College in Schenectady, New York– 1825
  • Public streetcar service began in New York City– 1832
  • First major football game played indoors, Chicago Coliseum, Illinois– 1896
  • Archeologist Howard Carter opened second doorway to tomb of Tutankhamen– 1922
  • The movie Casablanca premiered in New York City– 1942
  • France’s first satellite, Asterix 1, launched– 1965
  • Comedian Milton Berle married Lorna Adams– 1991
  • Thelma Chalifoux was the first Metis woman to become a Canadian senator (Alberta)– 1997
  • A buoy recorded a 75-foot wave off Cape Mendocino, California– 2019


  • A late-season hurricane brushed the east coast with gales and heavy rain– 1888
  • A blizzard struck North Dakota– 1896
  • 1.5 inches of rain fell in 1 minute in Barot, Guadeloupe, setting a world record– 1970

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