City of Residence: Kingston
Prof. Lubomyr Y. Luciuk:
While he is being put forth as a nominee for a Shevchenko Medal in the category of Education, Prof. Lubomyr Y. Luciuk is just as easily a strong nominee in the Community Development category.
Born in 1953 in Kingston, ON, to Ukrainian displaced persons parents, he came of age at a time when Ukrainian Canadians were clamouring for a free and independent Ukraine. While the land of his parents has always held a cherished place in his heart, It was while In university that a young Luciuk, himself a product of the Third Wave, met a man of the First, who told him he was interned at Fort Henry during the First World War. It was a part of history Prof. Luciuk had never heard about.
Sensing a chance to inform himself and canada, Prof. Luciuk made it his mission to immerse himself in the matter, writing scores of books, papers, op eds and letters to the editor, co-creating activist and effective organizations like the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association to have the matter argued In public, and pressuring the government and the media on the matter.
Throughout his life and especially in the last three decades, he has devoted himself to informing, and more Importantly, convincing, Ukrainian canadians, the Canadian public at large as well as the world, of the indignities suffered by Ukrainian immigrants during Canada’s First National Internment Operations. Through his meticulous
research, his charismatic speaking engagements, his political activism and even a little stuntsmanshlp, he has helped the hromada in Canada develop for the better. That success pays dividends today and will so for years to come, as the $12-million endowment is open to any and all citizens who put forth a deserving project that commemorates the Internment operations.
ShapeOutside of the very successful Internment campaign, his myriad books and other publications (please see his CV, attached) on a variety of subjects besides internment testify to his other successes. As an expert on the Ukrainian immigrant experience (Searching for Place, 2000), Prof. Luciuk has been asked to testify numerous times before Parliament on topics like multiculturalism and immigration. Books like Konowal: A canadian Hero (1999), paved the way for the UCCLA’s erection of a statue to the WWI Victoria Cross winner in Kutkivtsi, Ukraine, and the successful location of Konowal’s war medal after it went missing from Canada’a War Museum in Ottawa. His authorship of
Not Worthy: Walter Duranty’s Pulitzer Price and the New York Times (2004), speaks to his and the UCCLA’s efforts to have the infamous reporter’s award removed for writing falsehoods about the Holodomor.
Key to remember among all these campaigns is that he was successful. Not many gave him much credit at the start of his campaign to have the government recognize the interment – some survivors urged him to let sleeping dogs lie, and contemporary cabinet ministers told him he was making things up. He persevered, and while no one person can take credit for the Government of Canada”s monumental decision to give royal assent to The Internment of Persons of Ukrainian Origin Recognition Act in 2005, if there is one person who comes close, it is Prof. Luciuk.