Arnold, Abe

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ARNOLD, ABE (1922– ), Canadian journalist, human rights advocate, and community leader. Arnold was born and educated in Montreal. After wartime service in the Canadian Army, he began a more than 50-year career combining journalism with Jewish community service. A man of deeply held progressive instincts, Arnold became English-language editor of the Toronto-based Yiddish-English weekly Vochenblat before he moved to Vancouver, where for almost 20 years he was editor and publisher of the Jewish Western Bulletin, the voice of western-Canadian Jewry.

Returning to Montreal in 1960, for five years he directed publicity and public relations for the Combined Jewish Appeal. He then moved to Winnipeg, where he served eight years as Western Regional Executive Director of the Canadian Jewish Congress in Winnipeg. Reflecting his passion for human rights Arnold was a founder and for a decade executive director of the Manitoba Association of Rights and Liberties. He had a hands-on role in drafting the Manitoba Human Rights Act of 1984, ensuring it was the strongest human rights legislation in Canada.

A self-taught historian, he was also instrumental in founding the Jewish Historical Society of Western Canada. He wrote several books and numerous articles on Canadian Jewish history. Recognizing his dedication to the community the Canadian government awarded him membership in the Order of Canada, the highest honor Canada can bestow on a citizen.

[Harold Troper (2nd ed.)]