“Canada Firsts”

Eine kleine Auswahl von “Canada firsts” …

Es gibt so viele berühmte Namen in den verschiedensten Disziplinen, jedoch ist uns oft nicht bewusst, dass es sich bei den englischen Namen nicht um Amerikaner oder Briten handelt, sondern um Kanadier. Um das Bewusstsein zu stärken, was Kanadier in den verschiedensten Bereichen erreicht haben bzw. wo es prominente “Canada firsts” gibt, dient die folgende kleine uswahl:

“Canada firsts”   |   Canadian Artists   |   Canadians in Business   |   Canadians in Sports

a Canada firstLaw Society of Upper Canada: World’s First Statutory Lawyers’ Governing Body
On July 17, 1797, the Law Society of Upper Canada was founded in Niagara-on-the-Lake. The Law Society of Upper Canada’s purpose is to regulate admission to the legal profession and ensure that those called to the bar follow proper procedures and ethics. The Law Society of Upper Canada is the largest in Canada with around 30,000 members.

a Canada firstFirst Labour Day
Canadian trade unionists organized the first day celebration on April 15, 1872 when around 10,000 Torontonians constituted the “workingman’s demonstration” in order to listen to speeches calling for the abolition of the law stating that trade unions were criminal conspiracies that restricted trade.

a Canada firstJerry Wright: Inventor of Computer Navigation System
Wright, born in 1917 in Liverpool, Nova Scotia invented with eight other experts the so-called R-Theta computer, a machine that fit into small fighter plane cockpits and continuously displays the location and distance from the home base. The R-Theta computer, developed in the 1940s remained an air-navigation standard until the 1970s. Wright holds around thirty patents in the area of navigation tools

a Canada firstThomas Ahearn: Inventor of Electric Cooking Oven 
Ahearn, born in 1855 in the Le Breton Flats part of Ottawa, had a natural skill with inventing and communications where he was concentrating on electric applications such as small streetcars in Ottawa, electric heaters or brush cleaners. In 1892 Ahearn invented the electric cooking oven. Moreover he installed the first streetlights in Ottawa and his original power company, now named Ottawa Hydro still exists.

a Canada firstJames Gosling:  Inventor of the JAVA Computer Language 
Gosling, born in 1955 near Calgary, began in the early 1990s to develop a universal programming language which was originally called “Oak”. “Oak” was then renamed “Java” and can be used with any platform such as OS, Unix or Windows.

a Canada firstDaniel David Palmer: World’s First Chiropractor
Palmer, originally from Port Perry, Ontario, accidentally discovered chiropractic treatment and started to explore the manipulation of the spine to solve health problems. Palmer also established the Palmer College of Chiropractic and was teaching his theories and practices in this field.

a Canada firstJohn Hopps: Inventor of the Cardiac Pacemaker
Hopps, born in 1919 in Winnipeg, developed with the help of his expertise in electrical engineering the cardiac pacemaker. This device fires a single electrical pulse at appropriate rates to control a heart at a normal to lower body temperature and return a fibrillating heart to a normal rate. Hopps’s invention was made public in October 1950 at the annual congress of the American College of Surgeons in Boston.

a Canada firstTofy Mussivand:  Inventor of the Artificial Heart
Mussivand, born in Turkey in 1944 came to Canada in 1965, continued Canada’s contributions to heart health by inventing an artificial human heart. Furthermore, Mussivand founded the Medical Devices Evaluation Network, an international network of 164 members, which was created to assist in the development and evaluation of medical devices for industry, hospitals, governments, users and patients.

a Canada firstDavid H. Hubel: Nobel Prize For Discoveries in How Vision Works
Hubel, born 1926 in Windsor, Ontario, was awarded with his colleague Torsten Wiesel of Sweden, half of the 1981 Nobel Prize in Medicine for the breakthroughs in research into the ability of the brain to interpret the code of images sent from the eyes.

a Canada firstKelvin Ogilvie: Inventor of the “Gene Machine” and the First to Synthesize RNA
Ogilvie, born in 1942 in Summerville, Nova Scotia, discovered in 1988 the process for synthesizing the ribonucleic acid or RNA, a molecule that builds proteins in cells, essentially following the genetic instructions contained in the DNA. Furthermore, Ogilvie developed the drug Glanciclovir.

a Canada firstMichael Smith: Nobel Prize Winner For Discovery of Process For Mutating Genes
Smith, born in England, has been living in Vancouver since 1956 and his work led to the discovery of a process to substitute a synthetic strand for one of two strands of matching nucleotides that make up DNA in any organism. The synthetic strand can be different in many ways from the natural strand and can be used to create a variety of mutations. Smith was awarded with the 1993 Nobel Prize in Medicine.

a Canada firstJohn Peters Humphrey: Drafter of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Humphrey, born in Hampton, New Brunswick, studied law and was called to the Quebec Bar. In 1946 he was appointed Director of the United Nations Division of Human Rights. In this position, Humphrey wrote the draft of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted on December 10, 1948, as a resolution of the United Nations General Assembly.

a Canada firstLester B. Pearson: 1957 Nobel Peace Prize Winner
Pearson, born in 1897 in Newtonbrook, Ontario, led Canada as prime minister, and on an international level at the United Nations. Pearson participated in several international conferences, became the High Commissioner for Canada in England, participated in the establishment of the United Nations and played a key role in the establishment of the NATO. In 1957, in recognition of his contribution to international politics and especially for his role in resolving the Suez crisis, Pearson was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

a Canada firstRobert Mundell: 1999 Nobel Laureate in Economic Sciences
Mundell, born in 1932 studied Economics at the MIT and the London School of Economics. After teaching at Stanford University and John Hopkins University in Bologna, Mundell worked for the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Later on Mundell taught at Chicago and from 1974 onwards at Columbia University. His major contributions to Economics are his Theory on Optimum Currency Areas, his contributions to supply-side economics, the so-called Mundell-Fleming Model or the Mundell-Tobin Effect. In 1999, Mundell was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences.

a Canada firstLouise Arbour: Chief Prosecutor of UN War Crimes Tribunals
Louise Arbour is another Canadian who reached the top of the UN system. A law professor at Osgoode Hall Law School and a former Justice of the Ontario Court of Appeal, Arbour was offered the job of Chief Prosecutor for the UN’s international war crimes tribunals in former Yugoslavia and Rwanda in 1995 by then UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros Ghali. In May 1999, Arbour indicted Slobodan Milosevic for crimes against humanity, the first time an international court had charged a head of state in power of war crimes. In June 1999, Arbour was appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada.

a Canada firstWalter Chell: Inventor of the Bloody Caesar Drink
As an immigrant from Montenegro, Chell spent three months in 1969 perfecting the Bloody Caesar cocktail when working for the Westin Hotel chain in Calgary. The drink, described as Canada’s national cocktail was first made with clams and mixed with tomato juice, vodka, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper.

a Canada firstWilliam Ricker: Developed the Ricker Curve to Track Fish Populations
Ricker, born in 1908 in Waterdown, worked for the Ontario Fisheries Research Laboratory before becoming a professor of zoology at Indiana State University. However, Ricker returned to Canada in order to become Chief Scientist of the federal Fisheries Research Board. In the 1950s, Ricker developed the Ricker Curve, a means of determining what average maximum catches should be set for fisheries in different regions in order to sustain fish populations at healthy levels.

a Canada firstGeorge Klein: Multiple Mechanical Engineering Inventions
Klein, born in 1904 in Hamilton, has been called one of Canada’s most prolific inventors. Klein studied mechanical engineering at the University of Toronto and worked on many innovative projects, where he for example played a major role in designing the NRC’s wind tunnel, moreover researched the properties of snow and designed efficient plastic-coated aircraft skis for bush aircraft. Furthermore, Klein invented and developed sights for guns and safety mechanisms for detonation devices. Close to the end of the Second World War, Klein steered a team in designing the Zero Energy Experimental Pile (ZEEP), the first atomic reactor outside the U.S., located at Chalk River, Ontario. However, Klein’s most well-known invention is the Storable Tubular Extendible Member (STEM), a retractable antenna, developed by Klein in the early 1950s to guide aircraft to bombing targets. Around the same time, Klein invented the electric wheelchair for the use by quadriplegics and wheelchairs today are based on his design.

a Canada firstBertram N. Brockhouse: Nobel Prize Winner For Invention of Atomic Particle Analyzer and Studies
Brockhouse, born in 1918 in Lethbridge, Alberta, worked for the National Research Council in Ottawa and graduated with a Ph.D. in Physics in 1950. After that, Brockhouse worked at the Chalk River Nuclear Facility north of Ottawa, where he focused on experiments involving the physics of solids such as metals and crystals, an area called solid-state physics. In 1962, Brockhouse became professor of physics at McMaster University in Hamilton, where he continued his experiments. For his invention, which is now used worldwide to study the structure of crystals, his experiments, and the development of methods for analyzing results of neutron-scattering experiments, Brockhouse shared the 1994 Nobel Prize in Physics with the American Clifford G. Shull.

a Canada firstRaymond U. Lemieux: First to Synthesize Sugar and other Substances
Lemieux, born in 1920 in Lac La Biche, Alberta, studied the degradation of the antibiotic streptomycin and due to this work, he became the first person in the world to synthesize sucrose. In 1955, Lemieux invented a chemical reagent, the first of many reagents he would go on to invent. In 1973, Lemieux worked on the synthesis of human blood and eventually he synthesized the carbohydrate sequences for seven different blood group determinants.

a Canada firstSidney Altman: Nobel Prize For Discovery of Catalytic Properties of RNA
Altman, born in 1939 in Montreal, studied physics at the MIT before exposing the new field of molecular biology as well as examining the characteristics of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). Through the 1970s Altman studied how the genetic code of DNA was transcribed into RNA. Altman and the American Thomas Cech discovered, independently from each other that the DNA itself acts as a biocatalyst for the transcription process. For their discovery of the catalytic properties of RNA, Altman and Cech were awarded jointly the 1989 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

a Canada firstRichard E. Taylor: Nobel Prize For Discovery in Particle Physics
Taylor, born in 1929 in Medicine Hat, Alberta, specialized in mathematics and physics at the University of Alberta. In 1961, Taylor participated in the construction of the two-mile-long Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, used for electron-scattering experiments. When the experiments were conducted there, it was found that electrons moving at high velocities collided with an inner structure in protons and neutrons. The evidence for the inner structure was believed to confirm the existence of quarks as the building blocks of protons and neutrons and, therefore, of all matter on Earth. For leading the research team to these discoveries, Taylor shared the 1990 Nobel Prize in Physics.

a Canada firstRudolph A. Marcus: Nobel Prize For Electron Transfer Theory
Marcus, born in 1923 in Montreal, received his Ph.D. in chemistry in 1946. After that, Marcus joined the then-new postdoctoral program at the National Research Council in Ottawa and thereby started his theoretical work in chemistry. From 1956 to 1965, Marcus developed his theory based on the transfer of an electron between two molecules. An increase in energy is needed in the molecules and their nearest neighbours to enable the electrons to jump between the molecules. The size of the energy barrier determines the speed of the chemical reaction. Marcus’s theory allowed calculations and explanations to be developed of the energy barriers of many chemical reactions involving electron transfers. For his contributions to the theory of electron transfer reactions in chemical systems, Marcus was awarded the 1992 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

Famous Canadian Artists:

  • Leonard Cohen Musician and poet
  • Mary Pickford Co-founder of United Artists film studio and one of the original 36 founders of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences
  • Mack Sennett Foremost director of slapstick comedies
  • Johnny Wayne and Frank Shuster Comedians
  • Roy Ward Dickson Inventor of the game show
  • The Crew-Cuts World’s first rock-and-roll hit
  • Neil Young, Bryan Adams, Justin Bieber Singer/song writers 
  • Joni Mitchell, Céline Dion, Alanis Morissette, Shania Twain  Singer/song writers
  • Nestor Burtnyk Inventor of computer animation programs
  • Christopher Plummer, Ryan Gosling, Pamela Anderson, Donald & Kiefer Sutherland, Jim Carrey, Keanu Reeves, Leslie Nielsen  Actors
  • Le Cirque du Soleil
  • Emily Carr Artist, painter
  • Margaret Atwood  Poet, novelist
  • Alice Munro 2013 Nobel Prize in Literature
  • Yann Martel  Novelist (Life of Pi)
  • Glenn Gould  Classical pianist
  • James Cameron  Film director (Titanic, Avatar)
  • Oscar Peterson Jazz pianist
  • Diana Krall  Jazz pianist and singer

Famous Canadians in Business:

  • Jack Warner Founder of Warner Bros. Hollywood Studios
  • Louis B Mayer Founder MGM Hollywood Studios
  • Galen Weston Owner of Selfridges, Chairman Holt Renfrew, controlling interest Loblaw’s, and others
  • Kenneth Thomson 2nd Baron Thomson of Fleet, media mogul (Thomson Reuters)
  • Lord Beaverbrook British wartime Cabinet Minister, media mogul
  • Frank Stronach Austro-Canadian, Magna International auto parts supplier
  • Joseph-Armand Bombardier Bombardier transport, inventor of the snowmobile
  • Olivia Poole Inventor of the Jolly Jumper
  • Ron Foxcroft Inventor of the Fox 40 whistle used in sports
  • Duthie Books World’s first on-line bookstore
  • Peter Lymburner Robertson Inventor of the square-head screwdriver
  • Frank Gehry Architect
  • Conrad Black Media mogul
  • John Molson Founder Molson Breweries
  • Isadore Sharp Founder Four Seasons hotel chain
  • Samuel Bronfman Founder Seagram?s spirits
  • Alexander Graham Bell Inventor of the telephone
  • Marshall McLuhan Scholar, coined the terms ‘global village’, ‘the medium is the message’

Famous Canadians in Sports:

  • Terry Fox One legged athlete and cancer research activist
  • Baseball Invented by Canadians in 1838 in Beachville, Ontario
  • James Naismith Inventor of basketball
  • Percy Williams World’s fastest man in the 1920s
  • Donovan Bailey & Bruny Surin World sprint record-holders in the 1990s
  • Mark McKoy 50-metre hurdles world-record holder in 1986 [later on he competed for Austria]
  • Montreal Canadians Most successful professional sports team
  • Hespeler Hockey Oldest hockey-stick company in the world
  • Bobby Orr Only hockey defenceman to lead the NHL in scoring
  • Wayne Gretzky “The Great One”, regarded as the greatest ever hockey player
  • Gordie Howe Known as ‘Mr. Hockey’, regarded as one of the greatest players
  • Maurice Richard  The ‘Rocket’, first NHL player to score 50 goals in one season
  • Manon Rhéaume First woman to play professional hockey
  • Lucille Wheeler World champion in downhill skiing and giant slalom in 1956
  • Nancy Greene First to win overall and giant slalom titles in the same season in 1967

Diese Auszüge sowie mehr über berühmte Kanadier findet sich im Buch von Duff Conacher (1999): “More Canada firsts – Another Collection of Canadian Firsts and Foremosts in the World”, McClelland & Stewart Inc.; ISBN: 978-0-7710-2244-9 (0-7710-2244-1)