(Click on the image below to see ASRA's history in photos)
Founding Members: (back) Don Seaman, Marcel Chartrand, Pauline Dupont & Solange Malo; (front) Simone Paquette, Denise Carroll, Laure Beaulieu, Lucille L’Heureux & Thérèse Huot.
The retirees’ Association was created in 1996, thanks to the initiative of Denise Carroll, who served as president until 2001.
The first meeting of the founding members was held on February 9, 1996, in the original space that was donated to the Association by the University at 559 King Edward Avenue, before moving to 192 Laurier Avenue in 1999, then to the Lees campus in 2012, then back to the main campus at 598 King Edward in 2020.
On September 11, 1996, the University’s Administrative Committee provided the Association with an initial financial contribution of $10,000, as well as a computer, to assist in the establishment of the Association.
The founding members then met with the University’s legal counsel to learn about the legal aspects of forming an association and the membership fee upon registration. A distinctive logo was designed for the Association and presented to the University Rector (President) for approval. Subsequently, the constitution of the Association was drafted.
The very first name of the Association was 'Support Staff Retirees Association'. This name was later changed to 'Administrative Staff Retirees Association' when the name of the active employee group was changed.
The first social gathering to which the retirees were invited was a breakfast at Nate’s Deli Restaurant on Rideau Street in Ottawa on December 6, 1996. This type of gathering proved so popular that, since then, the ASRA has been organizing regular social events for all its retirees, alternately on the Ontario and Québec sides of the Ottawa River.
The Association’s Board immediately began tackling important issues such as obtaining representation on the University’s Pension Committee and free tuition for retirees. Since then, the Board has consistently advocated for the needs of retired administrative staff to obtain improvements to retiree benefits.