Announcing: The Great Canadian Dyslexia Project

Great Canadian Dyslexic Project

We have The Great Canadian Baking Show. The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup. The Great Canadian Bumble Bee Count. The Great Canadian Reading List.

So why not this?

The Great Canadian Dyslexia Project (Trademark pending!), brought to you by the Dyslexic Library.

Why do we need another “Great Canadian” thing?

It’s simple: most lists of “famous” dyslexics” are dominated by Americans or Brits.

What about us Canucks?

You will find a few accomplished and openly dyslexic Canadians on these lists:

  1. Former Member of Parliament/social activist Paul Dewar
  2. “Shark” Kevin O’Leary
  3. Hockey player Brent Sopel
  4. Musician Marc Jordan


Do the math: Given that 1 in 10 people are dyslexic, and Canada has a population of 37 million, there should be 3.7 million people in Canada with dyslexia.

So where are they?

Say dyslexia, eh?

Celebrities don’t speak publicly about dyslexia for the same reason us common folk stay quiet: shame and lack of support at school and at work.

But times are changing. Dyslexia is more commonly characterized as a different way of thinking than a disability. Dyslexics are now known to be some of the world’s greatest thinkers, inventors and creators. And we also know that early identification, the right support and reading instruction removes barriers to learning for dyslexic children at school.

Be part of the change here in Canada. Add your name, and help build a list of Great Canadian Dyslexics.


We need a more dyslexia-positive nation.

We need educators and employers to support and recognize dyslexic weaknesses and strengths.

We need Canadian role models.

We need dyslexics to share their #madeinCanada #madebydyslexia stories.

What makes a Great Canadian Dyslexic or a Canadian dyslexic great?

1. Our celebrity adverse nation prefers the term “Great” to describe successful authors, artists, scientists, politicians, bankers, entrepreneurs. People like Margaret Atwood, Pierre Berton or Tommy Douglas are all “Great Canadians.”

2. All dyslexics are “Great”, whether famous or not: strong, smart and resilient people despite the fact we receive little to no support at school or work.

Submissions wanted!

Please send me names of anyone you think should be included on the list of “Great Canadian Dyslexics.”

Remember, “Great” is not just about fame and fortune, it’s also about accomplishments and attitude. It could be anyone who has had an influence on you, the community or further afield. It could be your mom or dad, sister or brother, friend or teacher, colleague or coach. It could be you!

Four criteria:

1. Person has to be dyslexic

2. Person has to be “out” about it

3. Person has to be Canadian or have a Canadian connection (lived in Canada at some point in their life, related to a Canadian, etc.)

4. Person has to be 18 or over

How to submit:

You can submit your nominations in the comment section below, by twitter @dyslexiclibrary, or email to

Please answer these questions, in 500 words or less, and send a photo if possible:

  1. Person’s name (what is your relationship to them? are you a fan, or do you know them?)
  2. Place of birth and where they currently call home
  3. How would you describe them? (actor, teacher, poet, mother, mentor?)
  4. What impact did/does dyslexia have on this person’s life (good, bad, both?)
  5. Why do you think this person is “great”? (this could be school or work related, a specific accomplishment, or a quality you admire)

Deadline is June 1, 2019.

I’ll be posting names, profiles and photos as we go.

My ultimate goal: a Great Canadian Dyslexic heritage minute!



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