Who Is John McGivney
Date Edited: December 16, 2016
In Memory of Our Founding Father, John McGivney
Mr. McGivney dedicated his life to volunteering and was a volunteer in Windsor from 1955 to 2014.
September 27, 1922 - May 8, 2014
John McGivney Bio - updated May 2014
The Governor General's Caring Canadian Award (2012)
In recognition of his outstanding and selfless contribution to his community and to Canada, Mr. McGivney was awarded the Governor General's Caring Canadian Award (2012). John McGivney has volunteered with the Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) for more than 57 years, eventually serving as president. He spearheaded the needs assessment and fundraising for a centre for children with disabilities and neurological disorders in Windsor/Essex County. He was also the founder and past president of the Children's Rehabilitation Centre of Essex County, which has been renamed in 2006 to bear his name.
President/Past President 1955 to 2014
Rotary Club of Windsor (1918)
As President of Rotary Club of Windsor (1918), Mr. McGivney spearheaded the needs assessment and fundraising for a centre for children with physical disabilities and neurological disorders. After several years of fundraising the Children's Rehabilitation Centre of Essex County opened their doors in 1978. In September 2005 Mr. McGivney was bestowed with a Life Membership from Rotary (1918) for being a positive role model, in "Service above Self" and a mentor for members of the club.
In June 2006, Mr. McGivney was honoured by his peers at Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) with the prestigious Eli Goldin Lifetime Achievement Award for outstanding community service.
John McGivney Children's Centre
(formerly The Children's Rehabilitation Centre of Essex County)
Member Board of Directors 1978 to 2011
Mr. McGivney devoted his heart and soul into this community for children and continued to actively serve the Centre in a variety of capacities. In 1999 the Centre's Board of Directors honoured Mr. McGivney's efforts and the major role he played in developing the Centre by establishing the John McGivney Scholarship Fund that is awarded yearly to students attending college or university that were former students of the Centre. In June 2006 the Centre chose to honour Mr. McGivney by renaming The Children's Rehabilitation Centre of Essex County the John McGivney Children's Centre.
University of Windsor Board of Governors 1975-1984
Member, Chair/Vice-Chair of the Management Committee for Program 25; Co-Chair of the Employees division of the Campaign; Vice-Chair of the Management Committee for Program 25, a project to raise $6,150,000 from the community for a $64,000,000, five year building program for the University of Windsor. As a result many University buildings enjoyed by students and faculty today were built from money raised from Program 25. Mr. McGivney has made outstanding contributions to the governance of the university, its community relations and its strategic directions. He was involved with various University functions and has been honoured with an Honorary Degree from the University of Windsor.
In October 2007, Mr. McGivney was honoured as a recipient of the 2007 Clark Award. The Clark Award was established in 1994 in honour of the late Charles C. Clark, Sr., Q.C., former Chancellor of the University of Windsor, to recognize outstanding service to the University of Windsor and the community.
Windsor Chamber of Commerce
Past President 1980
St. Mark's by-the-Lake Anglican Church. Finance Chairperson
Numerous volunteer work in multiple capacities
Mr. McGivney was someone who has always believed it is better to give than to receive. Over the years, Mr. McGivney has consistently acted on his belief through his numerous contributions to community organizations such as The Rotary Club of Windsor (1918), Windsor Police Commission, Windsor Chamber of Commerce, the University of Windsor, his church, Princess Anne School and the John McGivney Children's Centre. The Centre is in existence in large part through his efforts. For over 33 years the Centre has provided high quality multi-disciplinary programs and services to thousands of children with physical disabilities and their families throughout Windsor and Essex County. Mr. McGivney was instrumental in establishing the Centre and in helping its services expand to meet the growing needs of vulnerable children in our community. He was a pivotal catalyst as the Centre embarked on a long awaited extensive capital expansion.
Mr. McGivney had assumed a number of prominent and diverse leadership roles within many community organizations since his arrival in Windsor in 1955. His commitment to enhancing the quality of life for the residents of Windsor and Essex County was remarkable. The positive and sustainable impact of his involvement is evidenced across many sectors in our community by the thousands of children with physical disabilities and neurological impairments that benefit daily from the medical, rehabilitation, educational and support services they receive at the John McGivney Children's Centre; by the thousands of students at the University of Windsor that continue to benefit from the capital and operational enhancements led and supported by Mr. McGivney during his term on the Board of Governors; by the many children and other vulnerable individuals that benefit from the support received as a result of Rotary projects led and/or facilitated by Mr. McGivney, by the congregants of St. Mark's by-the-Lake Anglican Church, by the individual students whose lives were touched through his participation in the Read to Students Program at Princess Anne School and by all of us who enjoy the ability to live freely in our country through his service as a pilot in World War II flying missions to Africa, Palestine, England, Arabia and Egypt.
Mr. McGivney came to our community in 1955 and accepted a position as corporate counsel with Chrysler Canada in 1956. He purposefully also chose to become an active and engaged member in community, legal and business circles. Mr. McGivney's professional knowledge and expertise allowed him to skillfully assume key leadership roles with a number of local not for profit organizations thereby assisting them in the valuable work they accomplish on behalf of the citizens of our community. Examples of such involvement include his many years of volunteer commitment to the governing boards of The Rotary Club of Windsor (1918), the Windsor Chamber of Commerce, the University of Windsor and the Children's Rehabilitation Centre of Essex County, recently renamed the John McGivney Children's Centre.
In order to successfully undertake and achieve the many accomplishments listed within this biography, Mr. McGivney developed and fostered multiple partnerships within and across many sectors both locally and provincially. Partnerships between the Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) and the provincial ministries of health and education were necessary in order to initially undertake the development of the Children's Rehabilitation Centre of Essex County that has to date provided services to thousands of children and families since its inception in 1978. It was necessary to foster and maintain these partnerships throughout the thirteen year period from the identification of the need for this Centre in our community in 1965 to the date of its opening in 1978. Mr. McGivney continued to support these partnerships throughout his 33 years of commitment to the Centre's Board of Directors. A long standing partnership between the City of Windsor and the Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) has been facilitated by Mr. McGivney through his long standing commitment to Rotary's Art in the Park Committee. Mr. McGivney's leadership and participation on this committee has facilitated the long term partnership with the City that has resulted in substantial funds being raised to assist in the ongoing restoration of Willistead and local children's charities supported by Rotary.
St. Gregory School Article
Windsor Star Archive Article