Adriana Davies: Inaugural Recipient of Heritage Writers’ Reserve Award

The Edmonton Heritage Council (EHC) announces Adriana Davies as the inaugural recipient of the Heritage Writers’ Reserve award.

Dr. Adriana Davies is invested into the Order of Canada in Ottawa, 2010

Dr. Adriana Davies is the first recipient of the Heritage Writers Reserve award from the Edmonton Heritage Council.  This initial award of $10,000 to Dr. Davies supports the publication and distribution of From Sojourners to Citizens: Alberta’s Italian History. The manuscript covers over 140 years of Italian history in Alberta, through demographic, ethnic, labour, gender, urban, and rural perspectives. It includes detailed research in oral histories, family and local histories, memoirs, and newspaper accounts. It is a work that will enrich the narrative and particularize the settlement experience of Italians in Alberta.

“Dr. Davies comes at this work with passion and experience gained over decades of distinguished scholarship,” says David Ridley, EHC’s Executive Director. “Edmonton’s Italian community has long been committed to preserving its cultural heritage, and Adriana plays a major role in these efforts. The histories collected in this book will resonate across communities and social strata, as emigrants to this country face recurring challenges around getting established while faced with prejudice and exclusion. We at EHC are privileged to support this project and look forward to its anticipated publication by Guernica Press in the Winter or early Spring of 2021.”

Dr. Davies has spent forty years documenting Alberta’s Italian communities, starting with an oral history project and historical booklet entitled Italians Settle in Edmonton, marking the 25th anniversary of the Santa Maria Goretti parish in 1983. From 1983 to 1999, she served as Executive Director of Alberta Museums Association. She spent the following decade as the Heritage Community Foundation’s Executive Director and editor-in-chief of the Alberta Online Encyclopedia, where she documented and presented Alberta’s rich public, economic, and social history for formal and informal learners. She continues to preserve, exhibit, and promote her ethnocultural heritage as a freelance culture and heritage consultant and as a guest lecturer in heritage, culture, and museum studies at post-secondary institutions across the province.

The Heritage Writers’ Reserve award provides Edmonton’s writers, researchers, and historians with funding to advance the publication and dissemination of book projects that explore aspects of Edmonton’s history and heritage. The award can be received at different stages of project development, with the goal of sharing the final outcomes of prior research and writing work with the community. Writers may use the prize to fund editing, book design, publication, touring, or promotion. Recipients are selected based on demonstrated career recognition within the heritage sector and a preliminary review of the manuscript.


About Edmonton Heritage Council

We connect people to the stories of our city through our leadership, support, and programs. We do this by helping Edmontonians research, preserve, interpret, and advocate for our heritage. Learn more here.

Contact: Joe Hartfeil

E: P: 780-429-0166 ext. 299

See this announcement in PDF form. A bio of Dr. Davies and book prospectus are also available.