Board of Directors


Donna Gabaccia, Chair and President

Donna Gabaccia is a Professor of History at the University of Toronto and past Director of the Immigration History Research Center at the University of Minnesota, where she developed the award-winning project “Digitizing Immigrant Letters.”  She is the author of 14 books and dozens of articles on immigration to the United States, Italian migration around the world and migration in world history. Her book,  Foreign Relations won the 2012 Theodore Saloutos Prize of the Immigration and Ethnic History Society; her most recent book Gender and International Migration received an Honourable Mention from the American Sociological Association. She is a the past president of the Social Science History Association and the recipient of the 2013 University of Minnesota Outstanding Community Service Award for faculty, which acknowledged her public history work with older and newer immigrant and refugee communities in the United States.

The granddaughter of Italian and German immigrants to New York City, she migrated to Germany where she worked (with a temporary academic work contract)
from 1982 to 1986 and she migrated to Canada in 2014. In February 2017, she acquired sufficient points to apply for permanent residency.

Angus Cole, Treasurer

Angus Cole is a Vice President at Clairvest and currently serves on the board of Clairvest’s portfolio companies. As an investment professional at Clairvest Angus is responsible for identifying and executing transactions, as well as working with executive teams to help enhance the value of businesses. Prior to Clairvest Angus led the pharmaceuticals and biotechnology for Monitor Deloitte in Shanghai where he was responsible for providing strategic advice and expertise to multinational corporations. Angus brings substantial financial and strategic expertise to the Ward Museum.

Angus is of Ojibwa and Scottish heritage.

Hadi Hussayni

Hadi Hussayni is a dedicated business professional. After spending several years as an Account Manager at GE he joined TD bank in 2013 where he has held several positions as an Analyst, Senior Analyst, Credit Manager and now Sales Manager. He holds a BComm in Finance from Concordia University and is currently pursuing his CFA designation. He is also a first generation Canadian. In 1990, Hadi’s family immigrated to Canada from Syria when he was only 4 years old. He now calls Toronto home.

Ellen Tang

Ellen Tang is a media artist and social worker in training. Her net art project It’s Chinese To Me was selected for the First Person Digital program, produced by the National Film Board of Canada and Studio XX. Her short films medicine and Girl Any More have screened at festivals across Canada and internationally. While she experiments using different tools, a preoccupation with issues of culture and identity is a constant theme in her work. As well, Ellen has experience working with newcomer and refugee youth in art and storytelling, leadership development, and advocacy. Currently, she is a graduate student in Social Work at the University of Toronto. Ellen was born in Hong Kong, and immigrated to Toronto at the age of 10.

Ceyda Turan

Ceyda is a lawyer, activist and writer currently practising Aboriginal law in Toronto. Prior to her legal studies, she worked as a researcher and policy analyst at the McGill Institute for Health and Social Policy. In 2008, she established the Alternatives International Journal in Montreal and served as its editor-in-chief.

Ceyda holds a BA in Political Science and International Development Studies from McGill University, a MSc in Development Studies from University of London SOAS and a BCL/LLB from McGill University.

Born and raised in Istanbul by Turkish and Israeli parents, Ceyda moved to Canada in 2002 to pursue her studies. She is proud of her Muslim, Sephardic and Eskenazi heritage and their migration histories and excited about the Ward Museum bringing Toronto’s migration stories to light.

Simon Vickers

Simon Vickers’s research interests include oral history, urban history, history of the left and the history of social movements. He has previously written about social housing and cooperative movements in urban Canada, and is currently studying neighborhood activist movements in twentieth century urban Canada. Simon is a PhD candidate in History at the University of Toronto. He was born in rural Newfoundland and moved with his family to San Diego, California when he was 14. After 6 years in the United States he acquired American citizenship at a naturalization ceremony in San Francisco. After three more years in the United States Simon returned to Canada to begin graduate school.

Douglas Worts

Douglas Worts (pronounced Werts) is a culture & sustainability specialist, with WorldViews Consulting, a Canadian consulting firm. For over 35 years, he has worked in and around museums, including 25 years at the Art Gallery of Ontario. Douglas specialized in experimental exhibit design, community engagement and audience research, where he explored the potential of artworks and heritage materials to stimulate viewer creativity and ‘meaning-making’. He has spoken and published widely on a range of museum, culture and sustainability-based topics. A founding members of the Visitors Studies Association, Douglas also served on the board of ICOM Canada, chaired the Alberta Museums Association national pilot of the Museum Excellence Program, reviewed numerous museums undergoing the American Association of Museums ‘Museum Assessment Program – Public Dimension’, was/is a founding editorial board member of Museums and Social Issues Journal, as well as taught graduate courses in museum education at the University of Toronto.

Born in Vancouver, Douglas’ immigration story goes back five generations to when his great, great, great grandfather, James Worts, set out from England in 1831 to start a new milling business in ‘Muddy York’ (now Toronto).  That business was transformed through the 19th century to become the largest distillery in Canada – Gooderham & Worts, Ltd.


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