Judith Lawrence

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Judith A. Lawrence CM is a Canadian puppeteer associated with the long-running CBC children's television program Mr. Dressup.[1] Her best known characters were Casey and Finnegan, although she also created other occasional characters, such as Aunt Bird and Alligator Al. Judith was born in Bairnsdale, Victoria, Australia[1][2] and grew up in Ballarat, Victoria, Australia.[2] She came to Canada at age 22, earning her living as a kindergarten teacher[citation needed].

After a successful audition, Lawrence started work for the CBC, where she soon created her most famous puppet characters for the Butternut Square TV series[3] and they made the transition to Mr. Dressup. Lawrence retired as the puppeteer of the show in 1989.[4]

Lawrence also wrote many books in The Young Canada Reading Series for Thomas Nelson publishers. Lawrence co-authored a series of books for D.C. Heath on women and work.

In the 1960s she co-founded The Voice of Women. In the 1970s she was on the first National Action Committee of Women (NAC). She continued her peace and feminist views through newspapers like Broadside. She was awarded the Order of Canada in 2001 for her work as both a puppeteer and an activist.[5]

After retiring, Lawrence moved from Toronto to Hornby Island, British Columbia where she became a strong community leader for the island, a designer of the recycling depot, and a farmer/environmentalist.


  1. ^ a b Kearney, Mark; Ray, Randy (2006-09-30). Whatever happened to-- ?: catching up with Canadian icons. Dundurn Press Ltd. p. 23. ISBN 978-1-55002-654-2. Retrieved December 20, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b "Casey and Finnegan of Mr. Dressup alive and well on Hornby Island". Retrieved April 24, 2017. 
  3. ^ Society, Canada's History (2011-10-18). 100 Days That Changed Canada. HarperCollins. p. 331. ISBN 978-1-4434-0914-8. Retrieved December 20, 2011. 
  4. ^ "TV's Mr. Dressup dies after massive stroke". CP24. September 18, 2001. Retrieved December 20, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Judith A. Lawrence, C.M.". Retrieved October 31, 2012.