First woman elected to the Yukon Territorial Council.
Born in Vancouver, British Columbia on March 6, 1918.
Died in Mayo, Yukon, on September 5, 2008
Political Affiliation: Not applicable, no party system at this time.
Legislative Career: Elected to the Yukon Territorial Council, Sept. 11, 1967 for Mayo District. Served until 1970.
Having grown up in a mining community, Jean Gordon was familiar with earning a living from natural resources. In 1938, she and her husband Wilf moved to Dawson City where they trapped, raised three bear cubs and caught and used a wolf in their dog team. They moved to Mayo in 1945 so their daughter Betty could attend school there and also meet other children her own age. It was there that Jean Gordon became active as a community volunteer, including serving as secretary and treasurer of the Mayo Community Club, bookkeeper for the Community Theatre and weekly columnist for the Whitehorse Star as well as working as an insurance agent.
Inspired to run for a seat on the Territorial Council by local concerns over water and sewer systems, Jean Gordon became the first woman to be elected in the 59-year history of the fully elected Yukon Territorial Council. She felt that her insistence in being treated as a person first and then a woman helped the Council work through their differences and resolve major issues.
After her term as Yukon Councillor for the Mayo District ended in 1970, Jean Gordon worked for Canada Manpower and the local post office as well as the family business. In addition, she started up the first Mayo Outreach office, served on the Yukon River Basin Study Group and was a member of the Yukon Territory Water Board for ten years. Her family and handicrafts continue to provide pleasure to this busy woman who remains active in her community.
Davidson, Dan. "Jean Was the Yukon's Sarah Palin." Whitehorse Star. (Sept. 15, 2008), p. 4.
Gordon, G. Jean. — Brief presented to Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada at Whitehorse, Yukon. — Whitehorse, Yukon : 1968. - 5 leaves.
Hayden, Joyce. - "Gertrude Jean Gordon". - Yukon’s women of power. - Whitehorse : Windwalker Press, 1999. - P. 55-85
Hayden, Joyce. — "Jean Gordon—pioneering in Yukon politics". — OptiMSt. — Vol. 20, no. 2 (June 1994). — p. 21
Hayden, Joyce. — "Just Call Me Charlie : The Story of Jean Gordon". — The Yukoner. — No. 15 (July 2000). — p. 16-34
MacDonald, Linda E. T. and Lynette R. Bleiler — Gold & galena : a history of the Mayo district. — Mayo, Yukon : Mayo Historical Society, 1990.