About

About the Foundation

The Lambda Scholarship Foundation was created during an era of struggle, resistance, and hope.

Vision

The Lambda Scholarship Foundation seeks to advance research related to Two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, questioning, plus (2SLGBTQ+) and queer, trans, Black, Indigenous, people of colour (QTBIPOC) in the Arts, Social Sciences, and STEM fields.

Our goal is to increase the number of Lambda Awards across the country, strengthen existing ones, and establish new awards for marginalized youth involved in projects, organizations, and actions aimed to fight against discriminatory and oppressive experiences.

For these educational projects, we seek the enthusiastic involvement of donors, campaign organizers and participants.

We endeavour to draw public attention to our award recipients as active community members with valuable knowledge and world-views seeking to transform society at local, national, and international levels in collaboration with established and other marginalized groups and organizations. 

Lambda Scholarship Foundation funds are managed on behalf of our donors according to specific agreements with each participating university and high school. Lambda is volunteer-driven in order to keep administrative costs low, ensuring that the money raised goes to the recipients of our awards.

History

The Lambda Scholarship Foundation started as a club called the Lambda Business and Professional Group in 1985 where gay and lesbian entrepreneurs and professionals met to network and socialize. At monthly meetings, members were asked to donate money for causes related to the gay and lesbian community in Ottawa.

As the membership and knowledge of the club’s existence grew, the organizers decided to reconceptualise the organization into the Lambda Foundation for Excellence in 1992, aimed at showcasing the queer community’s achievements in social and political arenas.

The Lambda Foundation for Excellence changed its name again in 2003 when it acquired charitable status as the Lambda Literary and Scholarship Foundation. Wilde About Sappho, the new scholarship foundation’s literary fundraiser, became one of Canada’s most popular queer literary activities. In 2014, the foundation changed its name yet again to its current title, the Lambda Scholarship Foundation after a government directive asking charitable foundations to re-apply for status and to ensure differentiation from other notable organizations, such as the Lambda Literary group in the United States.

The records of the Lambda Scholarship Foundation’s history have been deposited at the City of Ottawa Municipal Archives.

The Lambda Scholarship Foundation started as a club called the Lambda Business and Professional Group in 1985 where gay and lesbian entrepreneurs and professionals met to network and socialize. At monthly meetings, members were asked to donate money for causes related to the gay and lesbian community in Ottawa.

As the membership and knowledge of the club’s existence grew, the organizers decided to reconceptualise the organization into the Lambda Foundation for Excellence in 1992, aimed at showcasing the queer community’s achievements in social and political arenas.

The Lambda Foundation for Excellence changed its name again in 2003 when it acquired charitable status as the Lambda Literary and Scholarship Foundation. Wilde About Sappho, the new scholarship foundation’s literary fundraiser, became one of Canada’s most popular queer literary activities. In 2014, the foundation changed its name yet again to its current title, the Lambda Scholarship Foundation after a government directive asking charitable foundations to re-apply for status and to ensure differentiation from other notable organizations, such as the Lambda Literary group in the United States.The records of the Lambda Scholarship Foundation’s history have been deposited at the City of Ottawa Municipal Archives.

History


Board of Directors

Patrizia Gentile

President

Patrizia is associate professor in Human Rights & Social Justice/Women’s and Gender Studies at Carleton University.

She co-authored The Canadian War on Queers: National Security as Sexual Regulation (UBC Press 2010) and co-edited Contesting Bodies and Nation in Canadian History (UofT Press 2013) and We Still Demand: Redefining Resistance in Sex and Gender Studies (UBC Press 2016).

Cameron G. Aitken

Vice-President

Cameron hails from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, and moved to Ottawa in 2012 to pursue a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Communication Studies and Sociology from Carleton University. 
These experiences motivated him to pursue his Masters of Arts in Gender Studies (2016-2017), funded by the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary. His research focused on the potential for community within digital cruising applications used by MSM (men who have sex with men) populations in the Ottawa Valley.

He is an intrepid volunteer (having worked with Sault Pridefest, the Superior Heights GSA, the Sault Comedy Guild, and the CEU LGBT Club) and a former Educator with with the Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity. He is looking forward to his time with Lambda and supporting LGBTQ2+ research in Canadian academia.

Cameron G. Aitken

Vice-President

Cameron hails from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, and moved to Ottawa in 2012 to pursue a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Communication Studies and Sociology from Carleton University. 
These experiences motivated him to pursue his Masters of Arts in Gender Studies (2016-2017), funded by the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary. His research focused on the potential for community within digital cruising applications used by MSM (men who have sex with men) populations in the Ottawa Valley.

He is an intrepid volunteer (having worked with Sault Pridefest, the Superior Heights GSA, the Sault Comedy Guild, and the CEU LGBT Club) and a former Educator with with the Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity. He is looking forward to his time with Lambda and supporting LGBTQ2+ research in Canadian academia.

Tuan Vu

Treasurer

Tuan Vu is an associate actuary and a consultant in information system implementation. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and a Master’s in Mathematics from the University of New Brunswick; and a MBA from McGill University. He has worked in diverse industries including banking, insurance, hydroelectric utility, manufacturing, high tech, and public sector organizations.

Michael Graydon

Secretary

Dr. Michael Graydon is an assistant professor of Sociology at Algoma University. After working in the area of HIV prevention education at the community, provincial & federal levels for most of the 1990s, Michael returned to university to complete his undergraduate & graduate work at Carleton University in Ottawa. With his dissertation research Michael continued to consider queer community, completing an analysis & social history of the Gays of Ottawa organization 1971-1985. His ongoing interests include, social movements, community, masculinity, sexuality, and varied social histories.

Michael Graydon

Secretary

Dr. Michael Graydon is an assistant professor of Sociology at Algoma University. After working in the area of HIV prevention education at the community, provincial & federal levels for most of the 1990s, Michael returned to university to complete his undergraduate & graduate work at Carleton University in Ottawa. With his dissertation research Michael continued to consider queer community, completing an analysis & social history of the Gays of Ottawa organization 1971-1985. His ongoing interests include, social movements, community, masculinity, sexuality, and varied social histories.

Jefferson Morris IV

Director of the Board

Jefferson holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, Sociology, and Sexual Diversity Studies from McGill University. He attended the University of Glasgow graduating with honours with a Master of Science in Equality & Human Rights. He is passionate about social justice, (multicultural) feminism, LGBTQ+ rights, sexual health, education, youth empowerment, and sexual and gender diversity.

Sara Bannerman

Director of the Board

Sara Bannerman is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Studies and Multimedia at McMaster University. She was a volunteer on the education committee for the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity in 2017-2018. As a graduate student, she ran a Queer Grad Students’ Group in Ottawa from 2004-2009. Leading up to 2005, she took part in the activities of Canadians for Equal Marriage, and prior to that, she hosted and produced a weekly queer radio program called ‘Queer Street’ at Queen’s University between 1995 and 1998. She also founded and organized the Queen’s University’s Coming Out Discussion Group between 1996 and 1998, and served on the board of Queen’s University’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Association around the same time. Her academic research focuses on platform governance, privacy, and international copyright.

Sara Bannerman

Director of the Board

Sara Bannerman is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Studies and Multimedia at McMaster University. She was a volunteer on the education committee for the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity in 2017-2018. As a graduate student, she ran a Queer Grad Students’ Group in Ottawa from 2004-2009. Leading up to 2005, she took part in the activities of Canadians for Equal Marriage, and prior to that, she hosted and produced a weekly queer radio program called ‘Queer Street’ at Queen’s University between 1995 and 1998. She also founded and organized the Queen’s University’s Coming Out Discussion Group between 1996 and 1998, and served on the board of Queen’s University’s Lesbian Gay Bisexual Association around the same time. Her academic research focuses on platform governance, privacy, and international copyright.

Dillon Black

Director of the Board

Dillon Black (they/them) is an unapologetically queer, non-binary, feminist anti-violence and 2SLGBTQI+ rights activist. Dillon grew up in Ottawa and became politicized after experiencing a hate-motivated sexual and physical assault at the age of 19.