History


Press Release (1971) :

Canadian Government Grant Charter to CFSA

The CFSA was pleased to announce that on May 6, 1971, the Canadian Government through the Department of Consumer and Corporate Affairs granted a Canadian Charter (Letter Patent) to the Canadian Fire Safety Association РCanadienne de Securité Incendie.

Why “Fire Safety”

The term “fire safety” was chosen to include both “fire prevention” and “fire protection”. It was realized that there are subtle differences but the needs and objectives of both fields have been so inter-related, that the two terms were melded into one term “fire safety” to cover both fields of activity.

Canadian Fire Safety Needs

CFSA was formed in light of the following needs:

  1. A Canadian organization to which anyone, regardless of their qualifications, may belong, so long as they are interested in some facet of fire safety;
  2. A National body which may adequately represent the entire fire safety field for the whole of Canada;
  3. A Canadian medium, through which, by talks, lectures, panels, discussions, library and publications, the latest available information on fire safety could be collected and disseminated as needed to all interested Canadians;
  4. A central Canadian base of operations to which those in need of help for specific fire safety problems may refer; and
  5. An organization where all those engaged in the fire safety field can meet on an equal footing, so that all participants may obtain through knowledge and understanding, a congenial appreciation of how other segments of the entire fire safety field are endevouring to progress towards a common objective, the minimizing of the loses of life and property from fire, explosions and related hazards.

The following persons were elected as officers of the new organization for 1971-1972 by the founding Council:

President: Stanley T. Murray Seneca College
1st Vice President: Denis Featherstonhaugh Vipond Automatic Sprinkler Co. Ltd.
2nd Vice President: George H. Fleming Borough of Scarborough
Secretary: Susan Bertschinger Ontario Department of Public Works
Treasurer: Douglas L. Norton Canadian Kodak Co. Ltd.

One Hundred and thirty people attended the inaugural “Charter” meeting which was held on Wednesday, May 26, 1971 at the Lord Simcoe Hotel in Toronto. At the meeting, the National CFSA Constitution was adopted. Dr. Robert F. Leggett, retired director, Division of Building Research of the National Research Council of Canada gave the key address. His closing remarks are of special interest:

“In my opinion, there appears to be this real gap in the public domain. This gap that I hope your association will fill. Regarding it as a solemn trust the maintenance in the public mind of the necessity for eternal vigilance if our fire losses are to be steadily reduced. Once this Association is well established I am sure there will be many tasks which you may want to undertake that do not appropriately fall in the normal activity of the agencies I have mentioned. I therefore, wish you well as you embark on the building of another Canadian organization. Not just forming yet another society… rather using the medium of an association for carrying out for public benefit the tasks of mutual interest to your members in applying your experience and expert knowledge to assist in this never ending fight against the menace of fire. You will be showing the world that once again in this country perhaps unique amongst many countries if not of all, that it is possible for government at all levels, industry, universities, and concerned ordinary citizens can and do work together when there is a national job to be done. As there is, so definitely, in reducing steadily the loss of lives and property through fire that is uncontrolled.”

Presidents Elected since 1971

  • 1972 – 1973 S. Murray
  • 1973 – 1974 D. Featherstonhaugh
  • 1974 – 1975 D. Norton
  • 1975 – 1978 R. Morris
  • 1978 – 1980 H. Gladney
  • 1980 – 1981 K. Richardson
  • 1981 – 1983 G. Landmesser
  • 1983 – 1984 B. McLaren
  • 1985 – 1987 J. Rubes
  • 1988 – 1989 B. Hillcoat
  • 1989 – 1992 R. de Launay
  • 1992 – 1994 P. Merson
  • 1994 – 1996 R. Florio
  • 1996 – 1998 A. Speed
  • 1998 – 2000 B. Murphy
  • 2000 – 2002 J. Winton
  • 2002 – 2004 D. Johnson
  • 2004 – 2006 Alan Kennedy
  • 2006 – 2008 Janet O’Carroll
  • 2008 – 2010 Leo Grellette
  • 2010 – 2012 Susan Clarke
  • 2012 – 2014 Matteo Gilfillan
  • 2014 – Present Nick Webb