Empowering The EmpoweredFeatured

Canada Unveiled Its $10 Bill That Will Feature Black Female Civil Rights Activist Viola Desmond

Black women are making their mark in this world and now we can add money to the list. Canada just unveiled their $10 bill with the new face of Viola Desmond, front and center!

(Madamenoire) The Canadian civil rights activist was honored on International Women’s Day on Thursday with an unveiling of her portrait on the $10 Canadian bill. Desmond passed away in 1965, so her sister Wanda Robson, who has been working diligently to keep her legacy alive, was there in her stead.

According to CTV News, Desmond was chosen out of 26,000 nominations. And having Desmond on the bill is historic in three ways – she will be the first black woman to be on any regularly circulating Canadian banknote; she is the first non-royal woman to be on currency; and she will be the first person to be featured on a bill with a vertical design. The Bank of Canada said that the vertical orientation allows Desmond’s face to be featured more prominently.

Image result for Viola Desmond


And as one design firm put it, “You tend to hold a wallet or purse vertically when searching for notes. The majority of people hand over notes vertically when making purchases,” Designboom author Andy Butler wrote in 2010. “All machines accept notes vertically. Therefore a vertical note makes more sense.”

As an American, I learned nothing about Desmond’s contributions to the civil rights movement growing up, but the Canadian woman caused such a radical stir that she was dubbed the “Rosa Parks of Canada.”

Click here to read the history of Viola Desmond