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Author on climb to Mt. Kilimanjaro, copyright M. Forster

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Meet the Author
Author Merna Forster, copyright M. Forster

Merna Forster is an author, historian, educator, public speaker, naturalist and photographer. She has a particular interest in women's history, natural and cultural heritage, travel and the outdoors.

Merna grew up in the Alberta foothills, where she loved to ride horses on an uncle's farm with an impressive view of the Rocky Mountains. She earned a B.A. at the University of Alberta after studying both arts and sciences, and also took drama courses at the University of Victoria in B.C. A recipient of the Richard J. Schmeelk Canada Fellowship, Merna received an M.A. in history from Laval University in Quebec City.

Merna worked with national parks and national historic sites across Canada in the areas of public education programs, outreach and visitor services. One of her favourite postings was in Haines Junction, Yukon - where she was the Chief of Visitor Services for Kluane National Park. Merna also enjoyed her many years as a Parks Canada naturalist in Jasper National Park, where she was a longtime board member and eventually president of the Jasper Yellowhead Historical Society.

Merna has worked in the field of Canadian Studies. While based in Ottawa she received the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada Commemorative Medal and served as vice-president of the Ottawa Independent Writers. In 2005 Merna was awarded The Lieutenant Governor's Celebration of the Arts Pin by Dr. Lynda Haverstock, Lieutenant Governor, Province of Saskatchewan. Merna Forster was one of the women featured in Herstory 2011: The Canadian Women's Calendar. She received a University of Alberta Alumni Honour Award in September 2012, to honour her accomplishments as a Canadian historian and her advocacy in raising awareness of Canada's unsung heroines.

She currently works at the University of Victoria as Executive Director of the Great Unsolved Mysteries in Canadian History Project, which received the 2008 Pierre Berton Award. Merna was a member of the Emily Carr Statue Committe (Parks & Recreation Foundation of Victoria), which raised the money for the Emily Carr statue.

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AUTHOR NEWS: Books

Merna's book 100 Canadian Heroines: Famous and Forgotten Faces was published by The Dundurn Group of Toronto. Ask for the book at a store near you! The publication is also available from amazon.ca, amazon.com and chapters.indigo.ca. Read more about 100 Canadian Heroines, and check out the book reviews.

100 Canadian Heroines

The second volume in the series is 100 More Canadian Heroines: Famous and Forgotten Faces, published by The Dundurn Group in September 2011. Be sure to check for it at your local bookstore, or order from amazon.ca, amazon.com or chapters.indigo.ca.

100 More Canadian Heroines

Merna's picture book Children of the Prairie was published by Baico Publishing.

Children of the Prairie

Other Publications

To purchase Maligne, Valley of the Wicked River and Jasper...A Walk in the Past contact the Friends of Jasper National Park Bookstore.

Maligne Valley guidebook Jasper historical buildings







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