Governance & History

OurDigitalWorld is a not-for-profit organization governed by a Board of Directors whose members have long histories with the project and connection with similar projects in and around Canada. The ODW steering committee works closely with the staff to guide and advise on development paths and service enhancements. ODW is staffed by a dynamic, virtual team whose collective experience amounts to decades of work in software and system development, archives and digitization project management in public, school and academic organizations.

The back story

ODW formed on the foundation laid by its predecessor Our Ontario, which was a service of Knowledge Ontario. Formed in 2006, the Our Ontario project was fully funded by the Ontario Ministry of Culture through Knowledge Ontario, a provincial initiative that sprang from the “Memory” project, originally known as the Ontario Digital Library.

OurOntario.ca first portal interface

OurOntario.ca first portal interface

The support and environment at Knowledge Ontario provided Our Ontario with the time and support to incubate a suite of services that enact the underlying philosophy that ODW follows today: to make information digital, findable, and a collaborative effort. OurDigitalWorld acknowledges the leadership and support that Knowledge Ontario provided from 2006 to 2012.

‘The Memory Project’ will provide easy access to electronic collections through the development of a unique centralized gateway to digitized local history and special focus collections from libraries, archives and museums across Ontario. This project will allow Ontarians to easily find collections that will meet their needs for scholarly and genealogical research, to find out more about Ontario and its communities and to locate specialized collections that may have previously been known only to local citizens and students.

- Ontario Digital Library Business Plan, October 20, 2003

Board & Steering Committee

Larry Moore with Walter Lewis

Larry Moore (left), Chair of ODW Board and former OLA Executive Director with Walter Lewis (right), Information Architect and Technical Lead, OurDigitalWorld. Photo by Diane Bedard/Knowledge Ontario

Art Rhyno

Art Rhyno, ODW Board member

Peter Ellinger (right) with Brian Bell and Patricia Jenkins (left)

Peter Ellinger (right), ODW Steering Committee member, with Brian Bell and Patricia Jenkins (left)