The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Announces 2012 Inductees
OTTAWA, September 27, 2013 – The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame (CRHF), a virtual exhibit that recognizes the people, municipalities and innovations that have advanced the Canadian rail sector, today announced this year inductees. The individuals below have given to the industry over the course of their careers, and their induction into the CHRF will solidify their place in Canada’s long and vibrant railway history.
Leaders: Mackenzie “Mac” Norris
Communities (Leader): Ralph Grant
Technology: Glen Fisher
The City of Brockville pulled out all stops for the Induction of the community into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame on May 14, 2013.
Town Crier Lawrence Levere read an official proclaimation to kick off the ceremony with Brian Porter, member of the Brockville Railway Tunnel Committee, at the podium acting as Master of Ceremonies. Brockville's Mayor David Henderson accepted the plaque from the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame committee member Doug Smith.
Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Canadian Railway Hall of Fame (CRHF) Accepting Nominations
OTTAWA, January 29, 2013 - The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame (CRHF) is currently accepting nominations to recognize individuals, communities and technologies that have been instrumental in building the freight and passenger infrastructure that plays such a vital role in Canada's economy.
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Announces 2011 Inductees
OTTAWA, December 11, 2012 – The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame (CRHF), a virtual exhibit that pays tribute to the heroes, leaders and communities of the Canadian railway industry, today announced its 2011 inductees. Across all three categories, each honouree’s profound efforts have made a resonating impact and have fostered the growth of Canada’s thriving railway sector for years to come.
This year’s inductees:
Leaders: Paul Côté, former president of VIA Rail Canada.
Heroes: Cliff Mackay, former President and CEO of the Railway Association of Canada
OTTAWA — Sir Wilfrid Laurier called him “the greatest railroad genius in Canada.” A century ago, Charles Melville Hays was a larger-than-life tycoon whose ambition and decisions helped shape the country and its capital city. But apart from railroad enthusiasts and Titanic buffs, few Canadians today know his name.
Hays was largely responsible for cajoling the reluctant British directors of the Grand Trunk Railway into building Canada’s second transcontinental rail line as well as iconic railway hotels in Ottawa, Winnipeg and Edmonton. He founded Prince Rupert, B.C. at the western terminus of the Grand Trunk Pacific rail line, which he virtually willed into existence.
(Charles Melville Hays: One of the Railway Hall of Fame's first inductees)
Shortly before retiring to his first-class cabin on the Titanic on the night of April 14, 1912, Charles Melville Hays offered a fellow passenger a chillingly timely prophecy about the intense trans-Atlantic steamship rivalry then under way between the White Star, Cunard and Hamburg-American lines.
"The time will come soon," Hays told Col. Archibald Gracie, "when this will be checked by some appalling disaster."
An hour later the Titanic hit an iceberg, and within three hours, the 55-year-old Hays and 1,513 other souls were dead. As an Ottawa Journal headline indelicately put it a day after the sinking: "Men of international fame perished like rats in a trap."
Hays, an American by birth, was perhaps the best known of the 82 Canada-bound passengers who lost their lives on the Titanic's maiden voyage (48 others survived). He was president of the Grand Trunk Railway, builder of Ottawa's Château Laurier Hotel and the city's new central train station and the driving force behind the country's second transcontinental rail line, then under construction.
(Charles Melville Hays: One of the Railway Hall of Fame's first inductees)
Recognizing Achievement in the Canadian Railway Industry:
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame celebrates those individuals, communities, and technologies that have made valuable contributions to Canada’s railway industry.
As a virtual industry hall of fame, nominations for induction are received via the internet. Nominations from the railway industry and public are welcome. Each year, the Hall of Fame announces inductions to its various categories, followed by public presentations to selected inductees.
Help make the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame a continued success. Your interest and participation is encouraged and welcomed.
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame is seeking nominations for 2011
Can you think of candidates for the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame?
Are there individuals you know who have made a significant impact to the railway-industry at large? Perhaps those who have represented the industry with class and integrity. Who do you think deserves to be honoured as an “every-day” hero, or an industry leader? Can you think of any technologies, or individuals who have been involved with their development that should be honoured?
You have up to March 30, 2012 to make a nomination online.
Winnipeg Inducted into Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
Railway Association of Canada President Cliff Mackay (pictured right) recently presented a commemorative plaque to Councillor Grant Nordman, St. Charles Ward, (left) recognizing the City of Winnipeg’s induction into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame for the year 2009 in recognition of outstanding achievement as a community in the Canadian railway industry
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame honours Canadian achievement in the railway business — specifically related to the development and ongoing role of Canada’s vibrant railway industry. It fulfills a need to recognize various technology, communities and individuals that have been instrumental in the development of this vital Canadian transportation system.
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Accepting Nominations for 2010
OTTAWA – The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame (CRHF) is currently accepting nominations to recognize individuals, communities and technologies that have been instrumental in building the freight and passenger infrastructure that plays such a vital role in Canada’s economy. The CRHF pays tribute to honorees in four categories:
Railway Hall of Fame Recognizes the Industry’s Performers
CALGARY, ALBERTA – A railway leader, heroes, community and modern technology were inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame today in Calgary at the industry’s annual general meeting and tradeshow.
Cliff Mackay, RAC President and CEO, said: “The industry is part of the nation’s present and future, as well as its past.” Canada’s railways transport 75 per cent of surface freight in the country, 68 million passengers annually and generate only three per cent of transport’s greenhouse gas emissions.
The Railway Hall of Fame was created in 2002 by the Railway Association of Canada with the support of its 50 member railways, the Canadian Northern Society of Alberta and the Canadian Association of Railway Suppliers. Since then, almost 100 nominees have been inducted on its website at www.railfame.ca.
Mr. Jesse Nowicki of Medicine Hat, beloved husband of the late Marguerite Nowicki, passed away peacefully at his residence on Saturday, October 4, 2008, at the age of 93 years.
He was predeceased by his wife Marguerite in 2000. Jess is survived by his daughter, Barbara Dunphy; sister, Doreen Goerlitz (Garnet); cousin and close friend, Glen Chapman (Carol); his grandson, Jim Dunphy (Betsy); granddaughters, Joey Johnson (Charlie), Katy Meadows (Andrew) as well as his nine great-grandchildren, Matthew, Anna, Coleman, Austin, Tate, Camden, Justin, Samantha, and Bennett.
Jess was a third-generation railroader whose family helped build the railway westward, and devoted his life to educating about Canada's railways. Well known as the 'Trainman' on the Park Car of the Canadian between Field and Medicine Hat, he would often give impromptu history lessons to passengers. Jess was also active in the community, receiving the heritage diesel locomotives for Riverside park.
A highlight of his life was being inducted into the 'heroes' category of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame during a visit by the CPR Holiday Train in Medicine Hat in 2006. Jess lived a long and wonderful life and will be dearly missed by his family and friends.
A Celebration of Jess' life will be held at Cook Southland Funeral Chapel, 901 - 13 Street S.W., Medicine Hat on Tuesday, October 14, 2008, at 1:00 P.M.
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
D.M. (Don) Bain, noted railway author and historian passed away on July 1, 2009 in Calgary. As an inductee of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame in 2007, Don was noted for his love of railways and related transportation subjects, having been the catalyst behind a now excellent series of reference books that started with volume 1 of "Canadian Pacific in the Rockies," published in the late 1970's.
A raconteur of considerable wit, Don was the ultimate dinner companion with
seemingly limitless knowledge (and humour) about a wide range of subjects.
The Canadian Railay Hall of Fame was honoured to have recognized Don's part
in telling the story of the contribution of the railway industry, and in particular that of Canadian Pacific. Our sympathies are with his family.
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Inducted Into Canadian Railway Hall of Fame (2008)
OTTAWA – Three railroaders were inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame today to mark their milestones as Leader, Hero and for Industry Achievement. They made definitive contributions to the industry during their careers. One is still active, one is retired and the third is being honoured posthumously.
Keith Hunt, a native of Frome, Ontario in 1923, rose from an apprentice electrician to corporate vice-president of CN. Jim F. Munsey, born in Edmonton, began his railway career as a Morse code telegrapher. He worked in various operational management positions across Canada, including as regional safety manager for the CN Management Region during the 1980’s.
Steve Harvey, a native of Montreal and an 18-year employee of GO Transit working as a System Safety Officer in Toronto, has been awarded a Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Industry Achievement Award for his work in promoting rail safety to the public.
The community of Capreol, a CN divisional point in northern Ontario for the past 90 years, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in August to mark its birthday during a family reunion, other events and the community’s restoration of steam locomotive 6077.
For its program C’est ça la vie that features common aspects of the way Canadians live, think and sometimes spend, the French CBC interviewed Gérald Gauthier on the passion of many Canadians for the rail industry, and more specifically on how the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame honours Canadian achievement in the railway business — specifically those related to the development and on-going role of Canada’s vibrant railway industry.
Capreol Inducted into Canadian Railway Hall of Fame on its 90th Birthday
Capreol, ON – Capreol, a CN divisional point in northern Ontario for the past 90 years, was inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Saturday night. The event involved a series of festivities, from sports to music and eating competitions, from dancing to a town-wide yard sale.
Prompted by a reunion of the Prescott Family, the community organized a massive restoration and re-painting of steam locomotive 6077, with the finishing touches completed this past weekend by volunteers, as part of its 90th birthday party. Tony Marquis, General Manager, Operations for CN’s Champlain Division in eastern Canada, made the announcement on behalf of the Railway Hall of Fame tonight. A native of Capreol, he is a third-generation railroader and a former locomotive engineer.
The Town of Mount Royal inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
The Town of Mount Royal was recently inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame.
Mayor Vera Danyluk received the plaque on behalf of the community, presented by Roger Cameron, Vice-President of the Hall of Fame and Director, Public Affairs, Railway Association of Canada. Special guests at the presentation in council chambers included members of council and community leaders.
TMR was created by CN forerunner, the Canadian Northern Railway, to finance the electrified Mount Royal Tunnel project, opened in 1918.
Ron E. Lawless, former President of CN and VIA Rail, received the Order of Canada from Her Excellency the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean, Governor General of Canada, during the Order of Canada Investiture Ceremony today at Rideau Hall in Ottawa. The recognition was for his community service as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Old Brewery Mission, past president of Bishop’s University and Governor Emeritus of Concordia University. Mr. Lawless was inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame in 2004 in recognition of his 52 years of service to the railway industry.
Photo: Sgt. Eric Jolin, Rideau Hall
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Ron Bailey Inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
Jim Hawthorne (left), President, Railway Veteran’s Organization and Shawn Smith (right), representing the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame, present an inductee plaque in the Leadership category of the Hall of Fame to Ron Bailey, retired civil railway engineer in Edmonton, Wednesday, December 12, 2007.
Bailey began his railway career in 1946 but created his legacy as Chief Engineer for CN's Mountain Region in the 1970's and 1980's. (CPimages PHOTO/Railway Association of Canada)
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Historic Anniversary for the Railway Association of Canada
Ottawa - The Railway Association of Canada will mark the 90th anniversary of the creation of the Canadian Railway Association for National Defence today, October 23. The organization was created to expedite the flow of freight cars back from the U.S. to help the Canadian war effort during the first world war. The name was changed to the Canadian Railway War Board. Because the concept worked so well, the War Board was dissolved and the Railway Association of Canada was established on December 1, 1919.
Representatives from Canada’s railways first met in Montreal to create a volunteer, national board to coordinate related industrial activities regarding the war on October 23, 1917. Its purpose was to “render the most efficient possible service to the national cause.” The timeline of the Association’s activities was to be for the duration of the war, and gave general authority to formulate a policy of operation for all or any of the railways.
OTTAWA, Oct. 15, 2007 – The Confederation Train, a rolling exhibit with its distinctive O Canada horn that crossed Canada during Centennial year in 1967, is among this year’s inductees into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame. The selection helps honour the heroes, technologies, leaders and communities of the Canadian railway industry.
Others include Calgary author Donald Bain and CPR photographer Nicholas Morant. Railway civil engineers, represented by the late J.E. Schwitzer of CP and CN retiree Ron Bailey of Edmonton, are being recognized for their engineering feats in harsh weather and terrain. The Town of Mount Royal, QC, was created as a model community by the Canadian Northern Railway, a predecessor of CN, to finance construction of the tunnel that still carries commuters into downtown Montreal through Central Station.
Lawless named to Order of Canada for Public Service
Ron E. Lawless of Beaconsfield, Quebec, former President and CEO of CN and VIA Rail Canada, was appointed a member of the Order of Canada on June 29 for Public Service by Governor-General Michaelle Jean..
He is also past-president of Bishop’s University, Governor Emeritus of Concordia University, continues to be active on the Board of Directors of Montreal’s Old Brewery Mission and was named to the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame as an industry leader in 2004.
Monday, April 30, 2007
All Aboard For Nominations to Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
Ottawa - Heroes, technologies, leaders and communities have all played an important role in Canada’s railway industry, and the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame is asking the public to make nominations in those categories.
The hall of fame, which is a virtual exhibit featured at www.railfame.ca, celebrates the many people, technologies and communities that have played significant roles in the Canadian railway industry. Through the annual nomination process, the public has a chance to make suggestions for induction.
(from St. Albert Gazette, by Bryan Alary, Staff Writer)
Revered as a priest, teacher and peacemaker, Father Albert Lacombe’s name is synonymous with the title of community leader. Perhaps overlooked in the annals of history is his legacy as a former president of the Canadian Pacific Railway.
Lacombe’s contributions to the railway industry earned him the posthumous honour of induction into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame. The award was presented at last Monday’s council meeting.
Hall of fame volunteer director Shawn Smith said Lacombe’s abilities as a peacemaker were instrumental in allowing the CPR to pound railway spikes west of Calgary. He brokered peace between the Blackfoot and Cree nations, and later convinced the Blackfoot to allow the CPR to extend the rail line through their territory.
Jess Nowicki Inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
Former CPR employee Jess Nowicki of Medicine Hat was inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Monday night during a visit by the CPR Holiday Train to his home community. Making the presentation on behalf of the Hall of Fame was CPR Yard Manager Matthew Crowley.
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Ordinary Canadians with Extraordinary Stories Lead 2006 Inductees to Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
OTTAWA -- Ordinary Canadians whose everyday work contributed to the railway industry in Canada are leading the group of 2006 inductees into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame– a virtual exhibit that honours the heroes, technologies, leaders and communities of the Canadian railway industry.
“This year’s inductions illustrate the important role that ordinary Canadians have played in helping the Canadian railway industry grow and prosper,” said Les Kozma, director and chairman of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame. “Without these people, our industry would never have made it to where we are today.”
Nomination Process Closes After Excellent Suggestions from the Public
OTTAWA - The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame would like to thank the public for its nominations of the leaders, heroes, communities and technologies of the Canadian railway industry, said Les Kozma, president and chairman of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame.
“Once again we had a great response from the public after our call for nominations,” said Kozma. “It is obvious how much the Canadian railway industry is appreciated in this country, and every year we can count on an excellent round of nominations.”
The nominations will now be handed over to the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame selection committee to choose this year’s inductees. The announcement is expected in the fall, with induction ceremonies varying around other railway events. In previous years, inductees have been awarded at dinners in Montreal and Toronto, and community events in western Canada.
Sounding the Horn for Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Nominations
OTTAWA - The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame is asking the public for this year’s nominations of the heroes, communities, technologies and leaders that have made significant contributions to the success and development of Canada’s freight and passenger rail industries.
“The annual nomination process is important for the hall of fame,” says Les Kozma, the director of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame. “It provides Canadians with an opportunity to highlight some of the people, communities and technologies they feel have played an important role in the development of Canadian railways.”
Inductees are announced publicly and featured on the hall of fame’s website, where Canadians and people from around the world can view and learn more about the Canadian railway industry’s most important people, places and technologies.
There has been a lot of work done to upgrade, simplify the access and improve the content of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame. The results will be self-evident, according to Hall of Fame Chairman Les Kozma.
The Hall of Fame seeks annual public nominations for leaders, heroes, communities and technologies that helped make freight and passenger railways the backbone of the Canadian economy. It was created in 2002 with the support of the RAC’s 60 freight and passenger railways, communities, museums, corporate sponsors. The site is now available at www.railcan.ca, as well as at www.railfame.ca.
Nominations for the awards come from the public.
Saturday, May 27, 2006
Opening of Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Pavilion
Big Valley, AB - Speaking Notes of Honourable Shirley McClellan, Deputy Premier and Minister of Finance
...It’s my pleasure to be here – not only as Minister of Finance and as Deputy Premier on behalf of Premier Ralph Klein – but as your MLA.
The railway industry has played a significant historic role in not only the development of our province over the past century, but also in the development of our nation, connecting communities, people and goods in the most efficient way possible.
While end products and key drivers of our economy – such as oil and gas – get a lot of attention these days, it is important for all Albertans (and Canadians) to remember that railways continue to play a huge, but often unrecognized, role in the economy — by moving those goods and raw materials to export and to market.
Big Valley, AB - Speech by Paul Clark, VP Communications & Public Affairs, CPR
...On behalf of Fred Green, CPR's President and CEO, the executive committee and our 15,000 employees across North America, I am pleased to be here to participate in this important event. Thank you for extending an invitation to our company.
This year is Canadian Pacific Railway's 125th anniversary of incorporation and it is only appropriate that we are here today for the official opening of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Pavilion that commemorates the accomplishments of the leaders and builders in Canada's storied rail industry.
Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Pavilion to open in the Village of Big Valley, Alberta, Saturday May 27
Big Valley - The Canadian Northern Society will host the public as well as special guests when they celebrate the official opening of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Pavilion on Saturday, May 27 beginning at 5:00 p.m. Featuring the inductees of the virtual hall of fame, the pavilion will be an outdoor, interpretive centre, located in the Village of Big Valley, Alberta.
Canadian railway employees have been recognized as heroes and were inducted, among others, into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame today. The wartime railroaders were praised for their incredible feats of bravery and round the clock contribution to the war effort in this, the Year of the Veteran as enlisted men and women, and for moving troops and materiel across Canada, to ports and overseas.
“The inductions are part of a series of annual events and activities that showcase the role that freight and passenger rail plays in Canada’s economy,” said Bruce R. Burrows, Acting President and CEO of the Railway Association of Canada.
The virtual Hall of Fame was created in 2002 with the support of the RAC’s 60 freight and passenger railways, communities, museums, corporate sponsors and the public at large.
Airchime inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
Locomotive horn manufacturer Airchime of Langley, B.C. was inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame in Montreal recently. Shown are, from the left, Roger Cameron, Vice-president of the Hall of Fame and Director, Public Affairs, Railway Association of Canada; Gord Patterson, President of the Canadian Association of Railway Suppliers, and Bill Challenger, President of Airchime.
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame is seeking public nominations for leaders, heroes, communities, and technologies that helped make freight and passenger railways the backbone of the Canadian economy. Deadline for entries is August 12. Those selected will be announced in September.
“The inductions are part of a series of annual events and activities that showcase the role that freight and passenger rail plays in Canada’s economy,” said Bruce R. Burrows, Acting President and CEO of the Railway Association of Canada. The Hall of Fame was created with the support of the RAC’s 60 freight and passenger railways, communities, museums, corporate sponsors and the public at large.
Francois C. Hebert, Vice-President of Network Strategies for CN and Ron Bilodeau, Vice-President of CPR’s Government Affairs inducted CN pensioner Omer Rochon, and CPR pensioner Terry Gilead into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame Tuesday (Dec. 6, 2005) during a meeting of the Canadian Railway Club in Montreal.
The event was in recognition of the service by thousands of railway employees and veterans who helped the allies win the peace during World War Two. Key railway shops were converted to turn out tanks, guns, munitions and ships, in addition to keeping locomotives, freight and passenger cars rolling. The railways set up pilot training schools, and pioneered transatlantic ferrying of bombers to Britain. Almost 43,000 CN and CPR employees enlisted, 1,500 of them were killed in service to their country, and thousands more were injured.
Brent Cheek (on right), Director of Standards for RailAmerica and a member of the board of directors of the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame presented a certificate to Mayor Stephen Mandel (on left) inducting the City of Edmonton into the Hall of Fame Saturday night during Alberta's Legacy Centennial Ball.
Induction of Ron Lawless, Former President and CEO of CN into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
Ron Lawless of Montreal, former President of CN and VIA Rail, was inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame today (Thursday )in front of his peers by Rob Ritchie, President of Canadian Pacific Railway and Chairman of the Board of the Railway Association of Canada. Left to right are Mr. Ritchie; Bruce Burrows, acting president of the RAC, and Mr. Lawless.
Ron Lawless too has been part of Canada’s rail heritage, and like its railways, successfully re-invented himself along the way. Ron led the team that introduced domestic and, later, international containerization to CN and its freight customers. He successfully prepared the railway for privatization in the mid-nineties.Today, intermodal transport is the North American railroad industry’s biggest single commodity, and is its fastest growing traffic segment.
Ron’s railway career spanned 52 years. He remains active in the community as President and Chairman of the Board of the Old Brewery Mission — which has been caring for the Montreal community’s destitute since 1889. He is also past-president of VIA Rail Canada and of Bishop’s University, and is a Governor Emeritus of Concordia University. Ron remains a very competitive golfer, who still loves to win.
Former Prime Minister Sir. John A. MacDonald and Ron E. Lawless of Montreal, former President and CEO of Canadian National Railway, have been named to the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame.
Other 2004 inductees include Airchime of Langley, B.C. in the technology category. The company has been developing, manufacturing and marketing railway locomotive, industrial and marine sound-signal products for world markets since its’ founding in 1929.
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame is seeking public nominees for leaders, heroes, communities and technologies that helped make freight and passenger railways the backbone of the Canadian economy. Deadline for entries is June 4. Those selected will be announced in September.
The inductions are part of a series of annual events and activities that showcase the role that freight and passenger rail played, and still plays, in Canada’s economy, said Bill Rowat, President and CEO of the Railway Association of Canada. The Hall of Fame was created with the support of the RAC’s 60-some freight and passenger railways, communities, museums, corporate sponsors and the public at large.
To submit a name for consideration, use the form available on the Railway Hall of Fame Web site and give your reasons why you believe your nominee, invention or community deserves recognition. Additional information on the industry is available on the RAC’s website.
Historical and contemporary railway industry leaders, singer and songwriter Gordon Lightfoot, communities, tunnels and bridges where the steel wheels roll have been selected for induction in this year’s Canadian Railway Hall of Fame.
The annual Industry Achievement Award will go to Serge Belzile who recently retired as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Quebec Railway Corporation. He grew it from one small short line in the Charlevoix Region of Quebec to a major regional railway in Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes.
Gordon Lightfoot, whose Canadian Railroad Trilogy fired the imagination of a generation, will receive the Hall of Fame’s Special Award this year. The original ballad tells the tale of the building of the Canadian Pacific Railway, and is one of 400 songs that he’s written and recorded, said Bill Rowat, President and CEO of the Railway Association of Canada.
Public nominations are made in four categories: Leaders, Heroes, Communities and Technologies, through the Internet, and an annual selection process, said Les Kozma, Chair of the virtual Hall of Fame. The project originated with the Canadian Northern Society, a registered charity incorporated in Alberta and based in Big Valley. It has been implemented with the support of the RAC’s 60 freight and passenger railways, communities, museums, corporate sponsors and the public at large.
Pierre Berton Inducted into Canadian Railway Hall of Fame
Canadian author Pierre Berton was inducted into the Canadian Railway Hall of Fame for popularizing the construction and history of Canada’s first transcontinental railway today during ceremonies at the Toronto Railway Club.
Mr. Berton works in all branches of communication, but his books on building the Canadian Pacific — The National Dream (1970) and The Last Spike (1972) — were later adapted as a television series. The Last Spike earned him a third Governor-General’s Award in 1972. Mr. Berton is also a Companion of the Order of Canada, a member of the Canadian News Hall of Fame, and has written 48 books.
Bill Rowat, President and Chief Executive Officer of the 60-member Railway Association of Canada, presented the special plaque to Mr. Berton on behalf of the Railway Hall of Fame.
The Canadian Railway Hall of Fame is giving Canadians a chance to honour the railroaders, their machines and their communities that make freight and passenger railways a vibrant part of the Canadian economy. Nominations can be made for Leaders, Heroes, Communities and Technologies. Deadline for entries is June 1.
Hall of Fame chairman Les Kozma said: “Leaders are those who had or have a significant influence in the construction, development, or promotion of the Canadian railway industry. Heroes include explorers, pathfinders, and individuals who have made a significant or special contribution to the industry while being involved in the maintenance and operation of Canadian railways.”
“Technology features significant equipment and structures that played a role in the development of the industry in Canada. Finally, all communities across Canada deemed to have historical significance to the railway system could qualify,” he said.
Bill Rowat, president and CEO of the Railway Association of Canada, said that, last year, the Railway Hall of Fame recognized such key figures in the industry as veteran locomotive engineer Harry R. J. Home of Jasper, well known for his efforts in preserving ex-CNR Mountain-type steam locomotive 6060; Roger Cyr and Ben Lévesque, the founders of the public safety program Operation Lifesaver; the City of Banff that started as a modest railway station stop and became an international tourist attraction, and the automatic air brake technology — a safe train braking concept invented more than 100 years ago.
Railroaders, their machines and their communities that helped link Canada’s freight and passenger railways into a vibrant continental network are being honoured in a virtual Railway Hall of Fame.
“Today’s announcement of the initial inductees range from Pierre Berton, author of The National Dream and The Last Spike books on building the Canadian Pacific Railway, to the current presidents of Canadian National and the CPR. Paul M. Tellier turned CN into the North American railway industry leader. Robert Ritchie restructured his railway into a successful stand-alone enterprise based on strong community and international business links,” said Bill Rowat, president and chief executive officer of the Railway Association of Canada. The inductions are part of a series of events and activities this fall to showcase the role freight and passenger rail plays, and can play, in Canada’s economy.
Others who received the first annual industry achievement awards are Peter Armstrong of Vancouver, president and CEO of Rocky Mountaineer Railtours, who created a successful specialty train service featuring the breathtaking beauty of the Canadian Rockies, and Tom Payne of Edmonton, creator of the first modern short line railway in Canada.