The NWLC story begins in 1928 when a determined group of Liberal women from across Canada gathered for a national assembly, the first of its kind. They saw the need for an active and effective women’s wing of the Liberal Party of Canada, and were set on establishing an organization that would give them a strong voice within the Party.
More than 500 women delegates attended this convention and the National Federation of Liberal Women of Canada (NFLW) was born. One of the key organizers was Cairine Wilson, a long-time activist and Liberal, who soon after became Canada’s first female senator. She also served as the NFLW president from 1938 – 1948. Over the first twenty years, the NFLW worked hard to establish women’s associations across the country, and by 1947 all provinces, except for Prince Edward Island, had their own. Throughout the 1950s, the number of women’s clubs was growing at an incredible pace. In the 1960s, the NFLW grew not only in membership, but in strength. The organization formulated new policies and new directions that it would take. By the late 1960s, there was tremendous enthusiasm from women about politics and the Party. The NWLC was becoming a strong, formidable organization. Changes began in 1973 when a new organization, the Women’s Liberal Commission, was established at the national convention. Later renamed the National Women’s Liberal Commission (NWLC), it set out to try new ways of providing women with more significant and recognized roles within the Party.
Today, the NWLC is one of the major pillars of the Liberal Party. It is made up of a national president, six regional representatives, and twelve provincial/territorial presidents who oversee women’s clubs across the country.
The NWLC represents and promotes the interest of women within the Liberal Party of Canada, encourages the active participation of women at all levels of the Party.