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Douglas–Coldwell Foundation

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The Douglas–Coldwell Foundation is a left-wing Canadian think tank devoted, in the words of its slogan, to "promoting education and research into social democracy." It was founded in 1971, and is based in Ottawa.

Douglas–Coldwell Foundation
Douglas-Coldwell Foundation.png
Formation1971 (1971)
Legal statusCharitable organization
HeadquartersOttawa, Ontario, Canada
Region served
Karl Bélanger Edit this at Wikidata

The Foundation was named for and inspired by Tommy Douglas, the first federal leader of the New Democratic Party from 1961 to 1971, and M. J. Coldwell, leader of its predecessor Co-operative Commonwealth Federation from 1942 to 1960. Both had desired a Canadian counterpart to the Fabian Society.

In 1987, it merged with the Ontario Woodsworth Memorial Foundation of Toronto, named for Coldwell's predecessor as CCF leader, J. S. Woodsworth.

The foundation has underwritten biographies of Douglas, Coldwell, Clarence Gillis, Stanley Knowles, and Grace MacInnis, and scholarships and lectureships at Canadian post-secondary institutions. The foundation also gives out yearly grants totalling up to $25,000 for projects supporting its mandate of "promoting education and research in social democracy."

The foundation is a registered charitable foundation, contributions to which are tax-deductible in Canada; it accepts memberships and solicits donations from individuals and organizations in the general public. While predominantly associated with NDP members and activists, and concerned in part with the history and future of the party, it is an independent group with no administrative connection to any political party.

Tommy Douglas was the foundation's first president. Kalmen Kaplansky led the think tank in the 1980s and 1990s. Karl Bélanger became president of the foundation in November 2016.[1]


  1. ^ The Douglas-Coldwell Foundation elects Karl Bélanger as President Douglas-Coldwell Foundation, November 24, 2016.

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