In Memoriam




The Ukrainian Canadian Foundation of Taras Shevchenko mourns the passing of trusted adviser and avid supporter Vasyl Balan.

Vasyl Balan was well known for his contributions to shaping the political and cultural landscape in Canada, his passion for strengthening the Ukrainian Canadian community, and his commitment to the prosperity of the young, democratic Ukrainian state.

Vasyl was a life-long activist in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada (UOCC). In his youth he was an active leader of the youth organization SUMK. Later he served on the boards of his parish St. Mary the Protectress Orthodox Cathedral in Winnipeg, St. Andrew’s College, the Consistory of the UOCC and the UOCC Foundation.

A proponent of and contributor to Canada’s multicultural policy, he worked toward the adoption of heritage language legislation in Manitoba.  He was a founding member and organizer of the Ukrainian Bilingual Program in Manitoba, Manitoba Parents for Ukrainian Education, and Osvita Foundation.

The Shevchenko Foundation is grateful for the knowledge, expertise, and mentorship extended by Vasyl to the organization on numerous projects.

Vasyl was also very conscious of the needs in Ukraine, always looking for ways to bridge two worlds. He worked as a Canadian specialist on various projects that shared Canadian expertise for the benefit of the developing, reforming Ukrainian democracy. In a fitting tribute to Vasyl’s commitment to Ukraine’s future, the University of Winnipeg, where he served as VP Finance and Administration prior to his retirement, is matching donations to the Vasyl (Bill) Balan International Students from Ukraine Bursary.

Vasyl Balan passed away in Winnipeg on March 11, 2022, after a lengthy illness.

The Board of Directors and Management of the Shevchenko Foundation express deepest condolences to his spouse Irka, son Andrij with Anastasia and Maksym, brothers Jars, Pavlo, and Boris with their families, and to all who were blessed to know and work with him. May his legacy continue to inspire future generations of our community!

Memory eternal! Вічная пам’ять! 

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