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In memoriam ‑ Wallace McCain

- May 17, 2011


Dalhousie wishes to extend condolences to the family and friends of Wallace McCain, one of Canada’s most influential entrepreneurs and a celebrated philanthropist, who passed away last Friday at the age of 81.

A business titan driven as much by his generosity as by corporate acumen, Mr. McCain played a key role in building multinational McCain Foods with his three older brothers, later acquiring, in co-operation with the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, Toronto-based Maple Leaf Foods Ltd., where he spent the last 17 years as chairman. But perhaps his greatest legacy will be his philanthropy in conjunction with his wife, Margaret Norrie McCain. The couple gave millions of dollars to early childhood education, post-secondary education, arts organizations, engaged churches and public hospitals.

Long a dedicated friend of Dalhousie, Mr. McCain received an honorary degree from the university in 2007 and in 2001 established the Maple Leafs Foods scholarship which provides two scholarships annually to students entering the Bachelor of Applied Science (Food Science) Program.

"Wallace McCain is an outstanding Canadian who not only was a smart international businessman, but one who firmly believed in the value of family, higher education and giving back to his community,” said Floyd Dykeman, Vice President, External Relations. “In over twenty years of conversations with Wallace, I came to understand his full out commitment to these areas. On a personal level, perhaps what I enjoyed most about Wallace was his great sense of humour  and his positive energy, which could literally fill a room."

"Wallace was a great friend and ally of Dalhousie,” said President Tom Traves. “But he was also a beacon of possibility for our region, proof that with commitment, passion and dedication, there are no limits to where our entrepreneurial spirit can take us. That spirit lives on, as does the generosity by which Wallace gave back to so many wonderful causes. His impact will be felt for generations to come.”

Services will be held Friday in Toronto at 2 p.m. EST. For more information, and to read a collection of tributes to Wallace McCain, visit http://www.wallacemccaintribute.ca/


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