Marva Wisdom

Senior Fellow, Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy



Marva Wisdom is the director of the Black Experience Project (GTA), a seven-year research study of the lived experiences of the Black community living and working in the region. She is also an external lead advisor for the City of Guelph’s long-term community plan and is president and managing director of Canadian Black History Projects.

Her volunteer work spans three decades and include founding president of the Guelph Black Heritage Society which acquired a historic British Methodist Episcopal Church associated with the Underground Railroad; vice chair of the Canadian Centre for Diversity; fundraising cabinet member of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights; chairing two United Way campaigns with record-breaking results; and serving 14 years on the YMCA-YWCA Guelph Board, the last two as chair.

She has been the Prime Minister’s appointment to co-chair two policy platform committees and held a three-year elected term as a national policy chair, shepherding equity-seeking policy priorities such as same-sex marriage, decriminalization/ legalization of marijuana, universal early childhood education and Indigenous rights.

Her recognitions include the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, YWCA’s Woman of Distinction Award, Toronto Police Exemplary Service Award, Jamaican Canadian Association’s Community Volunteer Leadership Award & CIBWE Top 100 Canadian Black Women to watch.

Ms. Wisdom has her Master of Arts (Leadership) from the University of Guelph and served on its College of Economics & Business’ MA Leadership Advisory Board, receiving the college’s inaugural Alumni with Impact Award.

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