Robson, Wanda Eloise

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Robson, Wanda Eloise

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        Wanda Eloise Robson (née Wanda Davis) was born December 16, 1926, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, as one of fifteen children born to James Albert Davis and Gwendolyn Irene Davis. She attended Sir Charles Tupper School, Alexandra School, Bloomfield Junior High School, and graduated from Queen Elizabeth High School. Upon graduating high school, she began working as a lab assistant for the Federal Fisheries department in Halifax. She had three children, Stephen Neal, Jeff Neal, and Gordon Neal, and raised them as a single mother until she married Joe Robson in 1971. The couple moved to North Sydney, Nova Scotia in 1975. In 2004, Wanda completed a Bachelor of Arts (BA) at the University College of Cape Breton (UCCB, now Cape Breton University(CBU)). Wanda experienced racial discrimination throughout her life and after graduating with her BA, became an activist, speaking about being a Black Nova Scotian and telling her sister, Viola Desmond's, story. Robson's work led to Viola Desmond’s posthumous pardon in 2010 and she created a lasting legacy for herself and her sister. In 2010, Robson published Sister to Courage: Stories from the World of Viola Desmond, Canada's Rosa Parks, which recounted the courage and ambition of Viola Desmond and the Davis family. Due to her work, Wanda received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from CBU in 2012. She died in Sydney, Nova Scotia on February 6, 2022.


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