One of the original members of the University of Calgary Faculty Women’s Club is still active in the organization and is our Inspiring Albertan this week.

When the University of Calgary Faculty Women’s Club (FWC) held its final luncheon last month, there was one person in the crowd who was there when the club was started 60 years ago.

Marjorie Norris was the wife of a professor in the Faculty of Education when the club was formed in 1956 and says it started out as a social club.

“The purpose was to have the wives of the professors, of course, recognized and have a little social contact, mainly though, honestly it was to have the wives, I think, get to know and associate and spend time with one another,” said Norris.

The university was known as the Calgary Campus of the University of Alberta at the time and there were very few female faculty members.

“I think it's safe to say the role of faculty women’s staff was quite minor because there was so few and they were working hard,” said Norris.

Polly Knowlton Cockett is a sessional instructor in the Faculty of Education and was co-president of the club.

Norris wrote a book when the club celebrated its 25th anniversary in 1981 and when the 50th was approaching in 2006, she was a big help to Knowlton.

“We spent several days in the university archives together pulling through old minutes and newsletters and articles and she was able to give me that perspective on those first 25, 30 years of the organization,” said Knowlton Cockett.

Knowlton Cockett says the club is fortunate to have Norris as a link to the history of the club.
“Marjorie helped put a real humanity over the whole of that history,” she said.

For all she has done for the University of Calgary Faculty Women's Club over the last 60 years, Marjorie Norris is our Inspiring Albertan this week.

(With files from Darrel Janz)