Casgrain, Thérèse

 Thérèse Casgrain, née Forget, reformer (b at Montréal 10 July 1896; d there 2 Nov 1981). Best remembered for her leadership of the campaign for women's suffrage in Québec before WWII, she was a leading 20th-century Canadian reformer. Born to a wealthy family, she married Pierre-François Casgrain, Liberal lawyer and politician, and raised 4 children. A founding member of the Provincial Franchise Committee for women's suffrage in 1921, she campaigned ceaselessly for women's rights in Québec and hosted a popular Radio Canada program in the 1930s, "Fémina." During WWII she was one of 2 presidents of the Women's Surveillance Committee for the WARTIME PRICES AND TRADE BOARD.

In 1946 she joined the CO-OPERATIVE COMMONWEALTH FEDERATION, becoming provincial leader 1951-57. She worked within the party, strengthening international socialist links, and in Québec helped mobilize opposition to Premier DUPLESSIS. In 1961 she founded the Québec branch of the VOICE OF WOMEN to protest the nuclear threat. She was a founder of the League for Human Rights (1960) and of the Fédération des femmes du Québec (1966). In 1970 she was appointed to the Senate. In her autobiography, A Woman in a Man's World (1972), she characterized herself as a humanist.