Canadian Nordic SocietyCanadian Nordic Society
Based in Canada's National Capital Region, the Canadian Nordic Society celebrates the links and common interests between Canada and the Nordic countries: Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland. Since 1963 the CNS has provided opportunities to share, learn about and celebrate Nordic culture and history and Canada's Nordic connections.

The Canadian Nordic Society hosts a program of speakers, organizes events and celebrations, and publishes Nordic News, our newsletter that ensures that our members are aware of activities and news of interest.

The Canadian Nordic Society (CNS) is an organization committed to promoting among Canadians an awareness of the cultural, economic, social, political, and physical landscapes of the Nordic nations, including fostering an awareness of Canada's likeness to Nordic countries. We achieve this by providing an innovative and exciting program of activities which run from September through June. This promotion is augmented by year-round communications via our newsletter and web site.

We are proud of our long history. The Canadian Nordic Society was established in 1963. Our founding president, the late Dan Harris, was a recipient of the Order of the Northern Star by Sweden's Prince Bertil in recognition of his services in promoting Sweden in Canada. Our membership is drawn from a wide range of local residents, both Canadians and non-Canadians, including members of the diplomatic community with whom we have traditionally held close ties and who serve as honorary members in our Society.

Members of the CNS participate in a range of activities which the Society offers such as monthly luncheons; a speaker series featuring eminent Canadians and visitors including ambassadors, explorers, scientists, academics, film directors, former Prime Ministers, authors; as well as organizing other events.
If you are interested in joining the Canadian Nordic Society, come to one of our events, or fill out the form on our membership page

Mailing Address:
Canadian Nordic Society
240 Sparks Street
Box 55023
Ottawa, Ontario, K1P1A1


The Annual General Meeting of the Canadian Nordic Society was held Wednesday May 28, 2014 at the Army Officers’ Mess. The following is a brief summary of the meeting, but does not reflect the official minutes which will be produced by the Secretary at a later date.

The meeting was presided over by President George Hynnä. Treasurer Lennart Nylund reported that there were 21 members present and that 5 proxies had been received. Since the requirement was for 24 members or proxies, a quorum existed and the AGM could proceed.

The draft Agenda was approved as well as the minutes of the previous AGM after some discussion regarding Past President vs Councillor.

The president gave his report reflecting on a number of events in the past year, significantly the 50th Anniversary Dinner held last fall. He emphasized the need for members to sign up on the new email system as the existing email approach will not be continued.

The Treasurer presented the financial report. While the financial results showed a small net profit last year of about $249, this was due to several factors – a surplus from the 50th Anniversary Dinner, an anonymous donation and some prepayments of memberships for next year. His report was approved. Simon Snow, previous Treasurer, commended the Councillors for their efforts to raise membership numbers.

As a result of the new Canada Not-for-Profit Corporations Act, the Society has to develop and approve new by-laws, and the Council has worked over the past year to complete them. Vice President Bruce Miller led the presentation. The new Bylaw No.1 had been circulated to members with AGM documents but because of concerns received about section 7 (borrowing), Council met immediately before the AGM to amend the Bylaw by deleting section 7. Presented to the AGM for confirmation was the Bylaw without the previous section 7, as amended by Council. There was considerable discussion over the role and responsibilities of the Past President, with the result that changes were made to section 24 on the number of Councillors and a reference to immediate Past-President was removed.

The new by-laws were approved as amended.

The Canada Not-for-Profit Corporations Act allows small Not-for-Profit organizations to decide to dispense with the need for a professional auditor to conduct a formal audit of the financial records; however, this decision must be made annually at the AGM. The membership approved this provision, and will seek a competent person from the membership to do a review of the financial records.

The finances of the organization are quite tight even with the small surplus, and it was noted that expenses are rising beyond our control. The Vice President introduced a set of possible steps that could be taken. It was decided to introduce a meeting attendance fee of $5.00 for non-members

to attend CNS Speakers’ meetings. It was also decided to raise annual membership fees to $20 for students, $30 for a single person and $45 for a family. The membership also directed theCouncil to pursue three other potential initiatives and report back at the next AGM on the on-going financial outlook of the society.

Ed Napke urged the Council to investigate lower-cost premises and other cost-cutting measures, but this didn’t result in a formal motion.

One of the chairs of the Nominating Committee presented its slate of Councillors. Eric Bawden is stepping down from Council. A slate of 7 candidates was presented and approved. Karin Birnbaum asked what sort of effort had been made to attract Councillors from more of the various Nordic Countries. As the meeting was being conducted under the existing by-laws, only a list of candidates needed to be proposed (under the new by-laws the slate will specify the candidates by position). Carried. Then it was proposed and approved that the following approved Councillors occupy the positions designated below.

President George Hynnä
Vice-President Bruce Miller
Secretary Tim Mark
Treasurer Lennart Nylund
Councillors-at-Large Martti Lahtinen
Lennard Sillanpää
Karin Birnbaum
Eric was thanked for his contribution to the work of the Council and presented with a mug.

The President mentioned a couple of up-coming events and noted that the Society is searching for a new newsletter editor. The President then called for a motion to adjourn the meeting. Carried.

Annual General Meeting 2014

The CNS membership year is from September 1 to August 31 which means that it soon will be time to renew your membership for the 2014-2015 year. (The fiscal business year runs from April 1 to March 31, so that an audit can be completed in advance of the AGM in May). The membership dues have been increased this year: $30.00 for an individual membership; $45.00 for a family membership, $20.00 for a student membership (dues structure as approved at the Annual general Meeting, May 28, 2014). Please fill in the form, enclose a cheque and mail it to the CNS mail box indicated in the letterhead or give it to one of the Board Members listed below. Unfortunately, the form cannot be completed or submitted electronically.

It is the membership dues that enable us to have the Speakers’ Series which has been one of the distinguishing aspects of the Canadian Nordic Society program since CNS was established in 1963. While it works in close co-operation with the five Nordic embassies situated in Ottawa, CNS does not receive any financial support from any embassy or other organization.

CNS depends on its membership to enable it to continue carrying out a program of activities that promote a better understanding of the societies and cultures of the Nordic countries.

Councillors 2014-2015

Please find attached the President's Report AGM 2014

Poem composed by Her Excellency Mona Elisabeth Brother, Ambassador for Norway, and recited by her at the Gala Dinner to celebrate the Bicentennial of the Norwegian Constitution on May 17, 2014. Here is the Ambassador's Speech

Here are the CNS By-laws

CNS Logo
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