To Serve the Community: The Story of Toronto's Board of Trade
Published: December 1974© 1974
296 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 in
Ebook - PDF
There is little doubt that Metropolitan Toronto would be a very different place today if it were not for the continuous active concern and influence of its Board of Trade. Rooted in the common soil commerce and industry, the Board and the community have grown along parallel lines over the past 140 years; their histories are inseparable and the story of the Board of Trade inevitably reveals and defines the forces which shaped Toronto and are responsible for its present character. To Serve the Community tells this story for the first time. Based on contemporary records, it is a soundly factual, immensely readable account of the Board's activities and development from inception to the present day.
Originally a convocation of businessmen who needed a meeting place to conduct trade, discuss matters of mutual concern, and protects their working environment, the Board gradually expanded its scope over the years. As Toronto grew, so too the Board branched out, taking a keen interest in all aspects of the growth and establishing itself as an influential body deeply concerned with the well-being of the community as a whole.
Within the formal structure of the organization, sections were formed responsible for a variety of commercial interests. Areas such as transportation, harbour development, immigration, education, urban planning, tourism, banking, charities, taxes, tariffs, municipal administration, and more were profoundly affected by the opinions and actions of the Board. Although essentially an organization of Toronto businessmen, the Board has never taken a parochial stance, but has involved itself in provincial and national matters, recognizing that wider issues invariably affect the condition of its immediate jurisdiction. Members have actively participated on many commissions, committees and representative delegations, always keeping the view-point and interests of the private sector in the forefront of community development. Perhaps the most significant achievement of the Board has been its ability to attract consistently to its service so many dedicated and capable people prepared to volunteer their time and abilities to the broad concerns of their community.