|On June 30, 1965, the Canada Post Office issued the Canadian Flag commemorative stamp honoring the inauguration of the maple leaf flag.
The Women’s Canadian Club was formed by Roma Ault, the wife of the 1965 Canadian Consul General, Orville Ault, after she recognized the need for Canadian women and wives of Canadians in the San Francisco area to meet for enjoyment and to further relations between the US and Canada. The first meeting was held on February 15, 1965, the same day that the new Canadian flag was unfurled and presented to a group of San Francisco Canadian women by the Premier of British Columbia, Mr. W.A.C. Bennett.
Following the flag ceremony, Canadian women were invited to join the Consul General and his wife at the consulate residence in San Francisco. It was at this informal meeting that the Women’s Canadian Club became a reality with a Board of Directors selected and Roma Ault accepting the position of Honorary President. As of 2015, one of the original board members continues to be an active participant in the club.
The club’s name was changed at some point in its history and is now known as the Canadian Women's Club of the San Francisco Bay Area.
The club initially met on the third Wednesday of each month from October to May, and luncheon meetings were held in the theatre of the Canadian Travel Film Library on Sansome Street in San Francisco, with a speaker or film from the National Film Board of Canada following the regular meeting. For its first full-scale meeting on May 19, 1965, which included members and guests, the luncheon was held in the Empire Room of the Fairmont Hotel with San Francisco radio and television personality, Rolfe Peterson, as its guest speaker.
Some guest speakers of note during the early years included:
May 1969 Dianne Feinstein
April 1970 Jim S. Nutt, Consul General of Canada
April 1971 Georgia Hesse, Travel Editor, San Francisco Examiner
Philanthropy was always an endeavor of the club with its initial goal of providing funds for room and board as a scholarship to a Canadian student living at the International House while attending the University of California at Berkeley. Today, philanthropy continues to be a large part of the club’s "raison d'être." Many non-profit organizations in the immediate San Francisco Bay area have benefitted and will continue to benefit from the fundraising efforts of the Canadian Women’s Club.
In 2010, some younger members of the club were cognizant of the need to have functions in the evenings and on weekends as most were unable to attend monthly daytime luncheon events. This awareness led to the formation of the "Young Canadian Women’s Club," a subset of the Club. To conform to the digital atmosphere and times, they officially and aptly renamed their group, CWC 2.0. A consequence of the busy schedules of this group's leadership is that CWC 2.0 was disbanded in 2019. We would love to see this group re-emerge under new leadership.
CWC continues to thrive, and its membership has grown in diversity and numbers. The club welcomes Canadian women, women with Canadian ties, and women who have an avid interest in Canada.