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Ethel Smith Fanny Rosenfeld. Photo: Library and Archives Canada Wikipedia

Jewish woman athlete shortlisted for new Canadian currency

For the first time a campaign to put a woman that is not the Queen on Canadian currency has announced its shortlist. The Bank of Canada announced recently that one of five women, chosen from over 26,000 nominations, will be on new Canadian banknotes.

Among the five women on the shortlist, is Fanny “Bobbie” Rosenfeld, a Jewish athlete and Olympic champion who was active in the 1920’s and 30’s. In 1950 she was named Canada’s Female Athlete of the Half Century by the sports writers of Canada.

As reported in the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame, in the 1928 Olympic Games in Amsterdam, the first in which women athletes participated, Rosenfeld won a gold medal as lead- off leg of the Meters Relay Team that set a world record. She also won a silver medal in the 100 meter sprint.

Om 1922, while excelling in basketball, softball, tennis and ice hockey, Rosenfeld devoted herself to track and field. Three years later, she equaled the world record in the 100 yard dash.

During her extraordinary career, Rosenfeld held a variety of Canadian records. She was elected to the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in l949. In l996,to commemorate the Centennial Olympic Games, a set of stamps featuring five of the country’s greatest gold medalists was issued. It included Fanny Rosenfeld.

After retiring from athletic competition due to severe arthritis in l933,she became a prominent sports journalist at the Globe and Mail and an activist for women’s sports.

When the currency for 2018 is produced, it will mark the first time that a woman other than the Queen of England has appeared on Canadian currency. If Fanny Rosenfeld is chosen, it will mark the first time that a Jewish woman has been featured on currency outside of Israel.

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About Doris Strub Epstein

Doris Strub Epstein
Doris is a multimedia journalist with many years of experience. She has worked in radio, television and print journalism and writes on a variety of topics, especially the crucial issues in Canadian and Jewish life.

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