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Although Chairs are not solely the responsibility of the Department, two Chairs (shown below) are currently held by faculty whose primary appointment is to the Department.

To support the work of any of the Chairs:
  • visit Make a Gift on the University Advancement website
  • select “Direct my Donation (see gift note)” from the drop-down menu that appears in the “Gift Information” section
  • in the “Gift Notes” box, type the name of the Chair you wish to support
  • complete the rest of the form.

Chair in Indigenous Governance

The Chair in Indigenous Governance engages in teaching, research and collaborative partnerships on Indigenous governance, legal and policy issues.  The Chair reports to the Vice-President Research and Innovation.  The Chair is held by Dr. Pamela Palmater.

To support the work of the Chair in Indigenous Governance, see instructions at the top of this page.

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Jarislowsky Democracy Chair

The Jarislowky Democracy Chair for the study and advancement of democracy was made possible by a generous donation from The Jarislowsky Foundation. The $2-million gift, matched by Ryerson University, endows the chair and positions Ryerson at the forefront of teaching, research and knowledge exchange on democracy. It also provides a public forum for discussion and debate about democracy at this critical moment in its evolution. Dr. Sanjay Ruparelia currently serves as Jarislowsky Democracy Chair.

The Department has played a significant role in the life of two other Chairs.  

With the School of Social Work, the Department responded to a call for proposals from the Canadian Auto Workers (now Unifor) to create the first union-endowed Chair at a Canadian University. The CAW-Sam Gindin Chair in Social Justice and Democracy (named to honour Sam Gindin, who was about to retire as the union's chief economist) launched in 2002 with Judy Rebick as the inaugural Chair.  Its mandate was to create a hub of interaction between social justice activists and academics at Ryerson University.  The Chair, now the Unifor National Chair in Social Justice and Democracy, is the joint responsibility of the Faculty of Arts and the Faculty of Community Services, and is currently held by Kikélola Roach.

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The Jack Layton Chair was established by Ryerson University in 2012 in honour of the contribution to public service made by the Hon. Jack Layton, who was a professor in the Department during the 1970s and 1980s (click here for the announcement).  The inaugural Chair was Dr. Myer Siemiatycki, who served from the inception of the Chair until 30 Juine 2015.  The current Chair is Dr. Ken Moffatt (Social Work).