JUNE 8, 1985

MÉTIS MODEL/ENTREPRENEUR BLANCHE BRILLON MACDONALD DIED

Born on May 11, 1931, in Faust, Alberta, Blanche was influenced by her Cree-speaking grandmother.  A model before opening her own modeling agency in 1960, she soon became involved in the Aboriginal community in Vancouver.  On the Board of The Vancouver Indian Centre, she worked with First Nations designers and discovered Indigenous models.  Blanche organized the first United Native Nations Conference and was a founding member of the Professional Native Woman’s Association.  She initiated a journalism program for Native students as well as a newspaper catering towards First Nation communities.  Blanche was honored with a Women of Distinction Award from the YWCA for her entrepreneurship and for her role as the Chief Executive Officer of the Native Communications Society of British Columbia.  She was a board member for the Better Business Bureau (BBB), the Modelling Association of America, the New Play Centre, and the Lakeside Advisory Board for Women.  

Source: Lawrence Barkwell, “Blanche Brillon Macdonald (1931-1985),” Virtual Museum of Métis History and Culture, Gabriel Dumont Institute of Native Studies and Applied Research, 4/8/2014.  Retrieved 7/2/2019, http://www.metismuseum.ca/media/document.php/14769.Blanche%20Brillon%20Macdonald.pdf
Photo:  Fred Schiffer (1917-1999), 9/30/1960.  Courtesy of Jewish Museum and Archives of British Columbia, Photo No.: JMABC L.23405

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