Dinner and Roast
Humour and good-natured political jousting will be on the menu during a charity roast of former Ontario Premier Bill Davis who led the province from 1971 to 1985.
The Progressive Conservative icon will be the Guest of Honour at the Children’s Treatment Centre’s Dinner and Roast at the Best Western Parkway Inn on Oct. 30.
“ We’re very pleased the Honourable William Davis has offered his support to the Centre in such a significant way,” says Event Chairman Sean Adams. “ We’re a community-based, community-supported agency and money raised from events such as the Dinner and Roast are crucial in maintaining the services we provide to abused children and their families.”
Those participating in the Roast are Senator Sharon Carstairs, former Liberal Opposition Leader in the Manitoba Legislature; Senator Mike Duffy, former CTV Broadcaster; Robert Fisher, a Cornwall native currently with CBC Radio and former Queen’s Park Bureau Chief for Global TV; Ed Lumley, former Cornwall Mayor and Federal Liberal Cabinet Minister; and Senator Hugh Segal, who served as a Senior Aide to Premier Bill Davis. Tickets can be ordered by calling the Children’s Treatment Centre at 613-9334400.
Politically active from a young age, Bill Davis graduated from the University of Toronto in 1951 and went to Osgoode Hall Law School. He played football during his university years with teammates Roy McMurtry and Thomas Leonard Wells, who both served later in his cabinet.
First elected to the Legislature in 1959 to represent the Constituency of Peel, Davis rose quickly through party ranks and was appointed by Premier John Robarts as Minister of Education in 1962. He oversaw a dramatic increase in education spending, streamlined Ontario’s inef- ficient school board system, and established the TVOntario educational television network. He also presided over the establishment of Ontario’s 22 community colleges and two new universities, Trent and Brock.
In 1971, Davis became party leader and premier. Under his leadership, the province’s health system expanded, the Ontario Human Rights Code was strengthened, and bilingual services were greatly increased. Davis was also a key player in the passage of Canada’s Constitution in 1982.
Still ahead in the polls, Davis retired in 1985. He was made a Companion of the Order of Canada that same year and has served on many corporate boards since leaving politics. He played a crucial role in the merging of the Progressive Conservative and Canadian Alliance parties to form the Conservative Party of Canada, and remains one of Ontario’s most-respected politicians.