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Logo of the Empire Club of Canada.

The Empire Club of Canada, established in 1903, is a Canadian speakers' forums.

Past speakers have included:

Selected past presidents

Past Presidents have included a Governor General of Canada, a Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, three Premiers of Ontario, six members of the Clergy and two Brigadier Generals, two Major Generals, a number of Lieutenant Colonels, Colonels and Majors of the military.


External links

The Empire Club of Canada Logo

The Empire Club of Canada is a Canadian speakers' forum. Established in 1903, the Empire Club has provided a forum for over 3,500 speakers.[citation needed]

Through a variety of presentation formats, the Empire Club invites local, national and international leaders and other change-agents to address the topical issues of the day.

The club is based in Toronto and holds most of its breakfast or luncheon discussions on Thursdays.


Notable speakers

Some highly notable speakers who have addressed the Empire Club podium have included:


Many early members of the Empire Club and previously been affiliated with the Canadian Club of Toronto, a similar organization. The catalyst for the formation of the Empire Club of Canada was the Alaska Boundary Dispute which was resolved by an ad hoc International Boundaries Tribunal in October of 1903. The tribunal, consisting of three U.S., one British and two Canadian members, voted 4 to 2 in favour of awarding a large strip on the Pacific coast of Canada (later known as the Alaska Panhandle) to the United States.

While, in some circles at that time, there were strong proponents for greater independence of Canada, a prominent group of local leaders felt there was a need for a new organization that would support the British Empire, as it was felt it would be beneficial to Canada to keep strong political and economic ties with the Empire.

A group of men gathered to draft the constitution for a new club to be named The Empire Club of Canada. This organization, with a plan of weekly luncheons, which would be addressed by prominent individuals who spoke with authority on the issues of the day, and would also have the distinctive basis of the British connection in its work and policy.

Membership was restricted to British subjects—there was no legal Canadian citizenship at the time—who would pay dues of one dollar a year, with a maximum membership of 500. Within a month, membership exceeded 300. A year or two later, the club had a waiting list of those wishing to join. The first luncheon speaker on December 3, 1903 was a clergyman and professor, William Clark, who said: "I can quite understand that to many persons, the formation of a club of this kind will seem a very little thing, ... I have not the least doubt that this Club will become of great influence and power in this Dominion".

The Empire Club Foundation

The Empire Club Foundation was incorporated in January 1969 and serves as a vehicle for the publication and wide-distribution of the annual compilation of speeches. Copies are sent to a large distribution of schools, libraries, consulates and embassies.

Registered as a charity, it objectives are to promote the interest in current and public affairs and to establish a historical database of all Empire Club speeches. All Empire Club speeches since 1903 are available via the Empire Club website. In 2010 John Koopman was appointed the Chair of the Empire Club Foundation.

Past Presidents

As of 2010, the President of the Empire Club is Tim Reid. Others have included:

Year President Year President
1903-1905 Brig. Gen. The Hon. James Mason 1905-1906 Rt. Rev. William Clark
1906-1907 J.P. Murray 1907-1908 J.F.M. Stewart
1908-1909 D.J. Coggin 1909-1910 Elias Clouse
1910-1911 J. Castell Hopkins 1911-1912 F.B. Featherstonhaugh
1912-1913 Rt. Rev. James F. Sweeny 1913-1914 The Hon. Mr. Justice James Craig
1914-1915 Lt. Col. R.J. Stuart 1915-1916 Albert Ham
1916-1917 James Black Perry 1917-1918 Norman Sommerville
1918-1919 F.J. Coombs 1919-1920 R.A. Stapells
1920-1921 Arthur Hewitt 1921-1922 Brig. Gen. C.H. Mitchell
1922-1923 Sir William Hearst 1923-1924 Elias H. Wilkinson
1924-1925 William Brooks 1925-1926 Rev. N.R. Burns
1926-1927 Col. A.E. Kirkpatrick 1927-1928 Col. Alexander Fraser
1928-1929 Robert H. Fennell 1929-1930 Hugh S. Eayrs
1930-1931 John D.M. Spence 1931-1932 H.G. Stapells
1932-1933 Col. The Hon. George A. Drew
1933-1934 Major James Baxter 1934-1935 The Hon. Mr. Justice Dana H. Porter
1935-1936 J.H. Brace 1936-1937 Major G.B. Balfour
1937-1938 Major R.M. Harcourt 1938-1939 J.P. Pratt
1939-1940 F.A. Gaby 1940-1941 The Hon. G. Howard Ferguson
1941-1942 C.R. Sanderson 1942-1943 John C.M. MacBeth
1943-1944 W. Eason Humphreys 1944-1945 Charles R. Conquergood
1945-1946 Eric F. Thompson 1946-1947 Major F.L. Clouse
1947-1948 Tracey E. Lloyd 1948-1949 T.H. Howse
1949-1950 H.C. Colebrook 1950-1951 Sydney Hermant
1951-1952 D.H. Gibson 1952-1953 John W.F. Griffin
1953-1954 Arthur E.M. Inwood 1954-1955 James H. Joyce
1955-1956 C.C. Goldring 1956-1957 Donald H. Jupp
1957-1958 LCol. W.H. Montague 1958-1959 MGen. B.J. Legge
1959-1960 Harold R. Lawson 1960-1961 Hon. Alexander Stark
1961-1962 Dr. Z.S. Phimister 1962-1963 Dr. J. Palmer Kent
1963-1964 Major Arthur J. Langley 1964-1965 Col. Robert H. Hilborn
1965-1966 Col. E.A. Royce 1966-1967 R. Bredin Stapells
1967-1968 B. Graham M. Gore 1968-1969 Edward B. Jolliffe
1969-1970 H. Ian Macdonald 1970-1971 H.V. Cranfield
1971-1972 The Hon. Henry N.R. Jackman 1972-1973 Maj. The Hon. Mr. Joseph H. Potts
1973-1974 Robert L. Armstrong 1974-1975 Sir Arthur R.T. Chetwynd
1975-1976 H. Allan Leal 1976-1977 William M. Karn
1977-1978 Peter Hermant 1978-1979 MGen. Reginald W. Lewis
1979-1980 John A. MacNaughton 1980-1981 Reginald Stackhouse
1981-1982 BGen. S.F. Andrunyk 1982-1983 Henry J. Stalder
1983-1984 Douglas L. Derry 1984-1985 Catherine R. Charlton
1985-1986 Harry T. Seymour 1986-1987 Nona Macdonald
1987-1988 Ronald Goodall 1988-1989 A.A.(Tony) van Straubenzee
1989-1990 Sarah A. Band 1990-1991 Maj. The Rev. Canon Harold F. Roberts
1992-1993 Robert L. Brooks 1993-1994 Col. Frederic L.R. Jackman
1994-1995 John A. Campion 1995-1996 David A. Edmison
1996-1997 Julie K. Hannaford 1997-1998 Gareth S. Seltzer
1998-1999 George L. Cooke 1999-2000 Robert J. Dechert
2000-2001 Catherine Steele 2001-2002 Bill Laidlaw
2002-2003 Ann Curran 2003-2004 John Koopman
2004-2005 Bart J. Mindszenthy 2005-2006 William G. Whittaker
2006-2007 Rev. Dr. John S. Niles 2007-2008 Catherine S. Swift
2008-2009 Jo-Ann McArthur 2009-2010 Alfred Apps


External links



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