Kristin Ives, Curator/Education Coordinator at the Essex Region Conservation Authority was named as President of the Ontario Historical Society (OHS) at its Annual Meeting on November 2. She has served on the OHS Board since 2013, most recently, as its Vice President.
“I am honoured to have been elected as President of the Ontario Historical Society,” said Ms. Ives. “The Society has had a great influence on my professional development as a historian, and on the way in which I view our remarkable Province through the individual stories shared illustrating each community’s unique culture and heritage, as well as through our collective experiences over time. I am grateful to the now Past President, Dr. Michel Beaulieu, for his incredible example of advocacy, leadership and service to our over 800 affiliated societies, member organizations, and member institutions. I look forward to the opportunities and challenges that this role brings, and I am eager to learn more about the incredible work being done across our province in the heritage and culture sector, and for my new role in helping to preserve and share those stories widely.”
Kris has been an integral part of the ERCA team since 2000, first as the Assistant Curator of the John R. Park Homestead and then as Community Events Coordinator, before being promoted to the Curator/Education Coordinator in 2014. Under her leadership, the Homestead has been recognized as the Best Museum or Heritage Space in Windsor/Essex for three years. She has curated dozens of interactive exhibits about the human and natural heritage of the Essex Region, including notable educational pieces on the Passenger Pigeon, Monarch Lifecycles, the Science of Maple, the restoration of the Detroit River and many more. She also serves on the Ontario Museums Association Regional Museum Network, the South-Western Ontario Heritage Council, the Conservation Ontario’s Watershed Interpreters’ Network, and is a former Chair of the Libro Credit Union – Windsor-Essex South Council. She volunteered for Museum Windsor from 2000 to 2020 and served as its Chairperson for a decade.
Founded in 1888, the OHS is a not-for-profit corporation and registered charity bringing together people of all ages and cultural backgrounds interested in preserving aspects of Ontario’s history. In 1899, the Legislative Assembly of Ontario granted OHS the legal power and responsibility to incorporate not-for-profit historical organizations. The Society is the only not-for-profit in North America with this legal tool to establish and incorporate other not-for-profit historical corporations.
The OHS is an inclusive, extensive membership-based historical organization, dedicated to working with all cultures, all religions and with Indigenous Peoples. It is the largest organization of its kind in Canada that is growing through grassroots community engagement focused on the protection and promotion of Ontario’s history.
“We are so incredibly proud of Kris and she is most deserving of this honour,” said ERCA CAO Tim Byrne. “She has been integral in inspiring a passion for our region’s history for more than 100,000 students over her more than 20 years as an educator, and preserving and interpreting the precious artifacts – including the historic home of John and Amelia Park, for the next generation of conservationists. Her role as President of this provincial organization is a testament of her professionalism, and a significant benefit for all historic properties in the Windsor-Essex-Pelee Island region.”
The Essex Region Conservation Authority is a public sector organization established by the Province in 1973, and governed by local municipalities to deliver programs and services that further the conservation, restoration, development and management of natural resources in watersheds in the Windsor-Essex-Pelee Island region.