CEDA Managers Throughout The Years


Jan 14, 2022

For at least 80% of its life, CEDA employed full-time managers to run the association. Through the years their duties and titles changed, although precise details have been hard to ascertain. Here is a short list of these people.

194? To 1953 — Richard Edmunds

Mr. Edmunds’ title appears at various times as Secretary, Secretary Treasurer, Secretary Manager and Manager. Whether these titles were “official” or merely the choice of the scribe of the various documents is not known. (The exact year of Mr. Edmunds’ employment is debated by those who worked with him, hence the question mark in the date.) Mr. Edmunds resigned in May 1953.

1953 to 1959 — Norman Franks

At the time of Mr. Edmunds’ rather quick departure, the Executive had already started to look around and had located Mr. Franks, an employee of Canadian general Electric. Mr. Franks was approached, and evidently must either have retired or recently left CGE because he was hired immediately with the title of manager, a designation he still carried when he left the association in 1959. According to Past President Don Hughes, the reason Mr. Franks retired was a very human one. Mr. Franks had lost his wife in 1956 and was living the lonely life as a widower. Good fortune and romance entered his life again and he married a very lovely “widow lady.” It is said they both settled down to wedded bliss and lived happily the rest of their lives in retirement.

1959 to 1968 — Dougald McKellar

When Mr. Franks announced late in 1958 that he wished to retire following the 1959 CEDA annual conference, the Executive looked around the Industry to see if there was a person of sufficient stature who could run the association. Mr. McKellar (at that time a vice president of Northern Electric) indicated that he would be willing to take early retirement and take on the job if he were the successful candidate. Because of his extensive electrical background and industrial knowledge, he was considered the ideal choice and he commenced working with Mr. Franks early in 1959. In July of 1959 he took over as manager of CEDA and carried the title of General Manager until he retired in 1968. Mr. McKellar died in the late 1970s.

1968 to 1975 — Norman McKellar

The two McKellars were not related. Upon the second retirement of McKellar Senior, an ad was placed looking for a replacement, but, as so often happens, the new man came through someone at Zenith, knowing that the second McKellar was available and inviting him to apply for the job. Norman was hired as General Manager and continued in that position until his resignation in 1975. He continued to be involved with CEDA, although in a different manner. For instance, he wore a member’s hat as a partner in the firm of Spence Electrical Products Company Limited, operating in the Metropolitan Toronto area.

1975 to 1980 — Richard Taylor

Richard was hired with a new title, Executive Director, and was the first person to manage the association who brought with him a background of association management. Prior to joining CEDA he had served with the Canadian Institute of Plumbing and Heating. He resigned on May 31 1980 to take up a position with the merchandising group COPEL, where he served as president.

1980 to 1981 — Stanley G. Wild

Stan was hired as Executive Director, a position he served in until May 1981, at which time his title was changed to President. He thus became the first full time, paid president of CEDA. His background in association work went back to the late 1950s and included the Ontario Camping Association, Integra Foundation, Geneva Center for Autistic Children, Industrial Cartage Association, and Canadian Warehousing Association.

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