Gavin Henderson

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Gavin Henderson

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Gavin Henderson was born in 1911 and raised in England. In his early twenties he visited Canada with a friend. In 1934 Henderson emigrated to Canada and worked in the Eaton's art gallery in Toronto. He attended monthly meetings of the Toronto Anglers and Hunters Association. Eventually Gavin came to know Frank Kortright and when a conservation council was established Kortright offered Gavin the position of secretary in 1952. Working in the council enriched Gavin's circle of acquaintances in the conservation and preservation fields. As editor of the Council's Bulletin he read everything he could that pertained to conservation and preservation. Throughout all of this he pushed the concern of conservation to the masses. He wrote articles in the Ontario Naturalist, gave lectures and briefs to government agencies, speeches and seminars to espouse his cause. He left the Conservation Council in 1965. Henderson was appointed a member on a standing committee advisory to the Minister of Lands and Forests 1959-1970. He was also director of the National and Provincial Parks Association of Canada. (Taken from: Wareki, George Michael. "Protecting Ontario's Wilderness: A History of Wilderness Conservation in Ontario, 1927-1973." Doctoral Thesis, McMaster University, 1989.) He founded the National and Provincial Parks Association of Canada and was the first executive director from 1964 to 1974. He has sat on a number of committees and associations involved in the conservation and preservation of Canada's natural resources. In 1985, he received Parks Canada's National Heritage Award. In 1989 he received the J.B. Harkin Medal from the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society. His leadership helped save Quetico Park from large scale commercial lumbering and prevented massive resort development at Lake Louise. He helped to establish ten new national parks, two of which, the Nahanni and Kluane, were declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites. For this service to Canada Gavin Henderson was recognized and on October 27, 1993 he was invested into the Order of Canada.

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