Peter Appleyard – Entertainment
(d. 2013) Musician and composer, member of the Benny Goodman Band, performed with Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, Mel Torme Diana Krall, Anne Murray, Oscar Peterson and Hagood Hardy. Host of CBC Television’s Peter Appleyard Presents.
Peter Appleyard is one of Canada’s best known musicians. Born in Cleethorpes, England, he began drumming in the ‘20s, with British dance bands. He moved to Scarborough in 1954, where he began playing the vibraphone.
A musician and composer, Peter’s biggest music breakthrough came in the early ‘70s, when asked to join famed jazz musician Benny Goodman.
Mr. Goodman quickly recognized Peter’s talent, making him a full band member and providing him with the opportunity to play for music icons such as Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Mel Torme. Peter has performed in many famous venues, including New York’s Carnegie Hall, and spent eight years with Benny Goodman’s band.
In 1961, Peter went on to co-host his own CBC Radio show with singer Patti Lewis and later moved to CBC Television, to star in Peter Appleyard Presents, a variety show produced in Toronto and syndicated throughout North America.
Peter has worked with many Canadian artists, including Diana Krall, Anne Murray, Oscar Peterson and Hagood Hardy.
Dr. Vicki Bismilla – Education
As a member of the Scarborough Board of Education and Superintendent of the York Region District School Board initiated 20 equity programs and committees, forming an educational infrastructure that continues today.
Born in South Africa, Dr. Vicki Bismilla is no stranger to the nation’s anti-apartheid movement or to the principals of social equity. Her childhood memories include Nelson Mandela visiting her family’s Durban home, discussing plans for the African National Congress.
After graduating from the University of South Africa with an English literature and drama degree, Bismilla, her husband and their children fled apartheid and came to Canada in 1970.
She took menial jobs to pay for teacher’s college and began teaching in Scarborough in 1972. She also completed her honours degree in English literature.
Bismilla spent 18 years with the Scarborough Board of Education, working in multicultural classrooms and rising through the ranks. She spent nine years as a principal, before becoming superintendent of education for the York Region District School Board, where she initiated 20 equity programs and committees, forming an infrastructure that continues today.
In 2005, Bismilla joined Centennial College as Vice-President Academic and Chief Learning Officer. In 2010 she completed her doctoral studies in second language education, to benefit ESL college students. Dr. Vicki Bismilla is an advocate of giving back to the community and she’s currently a board member for The Scarborough Hospital.
Lawrence Gowan – Entertainment
Juno Award winning singer song writer with six Canadian Top 10 songs, four platinum and three gold albums and one gold single.
Scotland-born singer/songwriter Lawrence Gowan has been part of the Canadian music scene since 1976. He began playing piano at age 10 and after graduation enjoyed modest local success with his first band, Rheingold. Gowan began his successful solo career under the stage name Gowan, releasing his first (and eponymous) album in 1982.
His 1985 album Strange Animal was his first Canadian commercial breakthrough, spawning hit singles “A Criminal Mind” and “Cosmetics.” His 1987 followup album Great Dirty World, saw another hit single with “Moonlight Desires.”
During a tour of England, he played an original piece with the London Symphony, at the opening of The Princess Diana Memorial Service. In 1998, he was awarded the prestigious National Achievement Award from the Society of Composers and Music Publishers of Canada and has received several SOCAN awards for songs surpassing the 100,000 air-play mark.
Gowan has one Casby Award and has been nominated for 12 Juno awards, winning two. He’s had six Canadian Top 10 songs, four platinum and three gold albums and one gold single.
Gowan joined rock group STYX in 1999 and continues to tour the USA, Europe, Great Britain and Canada with STYX today.
Jay C. Hope – Community
highest-ranking black police officer in Canadian history, when he was promoted to Deputy Chief of Ontario Provincial Police in 2004 and only the second black Deputy Minister of Correctional Services when appointed in 2008.
Jay C. Hope became the highest-ranking black police officer in Canadian history, when he was promoted to Deputy Chief of Ontario Provincial Police in 2004 and only the second black Deputy Minister of Correctional Services when appointed by Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty in 2008.
Hope has also been Commissioner of Emergency Management Ontario, Commissioner of Community Safety and an Ontario Human Rights Commission senior investigator. Currently on long-term secondment, he remains a serving police officer of more than 30 years.
Deputy Minister Hope is a University of Toronto, Scarborough Campus, graduate with a bachelor of arts in psychology and criminology. In 2009, he received an honourary doctorate of law from the University of Guelph and an honourary bachelor of arts from Seneca College.
Hope’s fondest memories are of Scarborough – attending Glen Ravine Public School and Midland High School and working at Scarborough Town Centre.
In 2001, he was awarded the African-Canadian Achievement Award and the Amethyst Award, the highest honour given to civil servants.
Hope’s most proud of the traffic programs he’s implemented that have significantly reduced death and injury to drivers and passengers.
Dr. Dhun Noria – Health and Science
surgical pathologist and Chief of Laboratory Medicine for The Scarborough Hospital. Chaired the former Metro Toronto District Health Council, responsible for the restructuring of 44 hospitals and the administration of a $17.9-billion budget. A successful business woman owning several medical-related companies in Scarborough. Order of Ontario recipient.
Indian-born Dr. Dhun Noria is a surgical pathologist and Chief of Laboratory Medicine for The Scarborough Hospital-Birchmount Campus. For more than 25 years, she’s played an integral role in the ongoing growth and development of The Scarborough Hospital.
Dr. Noria also chaired the former Metro Toronto District Health Council, responsible for the restructuring of 44 hospitals and the administration of a $17.9-billion budget. The council has since been replaced by the Local Health Integrated Network, Canada’s largest hospital network.
Dr. Noria and her husband are active in many community causes and charities, including The Scarborough Hospital Foundation. She is also a long-standing board member of the Yee-Hong Wellness Centre.
Not only is she an accomplished physician, Dr. Noria is also a successful business woman, owning several medical-related companies in Scarborough. She was awarded the 2004 Business Woman of the Year by the Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce.
A two-time breast cancer survivor, she understands the fear and emotions experienced by woman faced with fighting this cancer. She was the public face for the Ontario Medical Association Awareness Campaign and has devoted her life to improving the quality of patient care.
Dr. Harold Stein – Health and Science
(d. 2021) Expert in cataract surgery, corneal transplants, contact lenses and refractive surgery. Pioneered the development of the intraocular lens for cataract surgery. One of the first in North America to perform the procedure and to practice laser vision correction.
Born in Niagara Falls, Dr. Harold A. Stein opened his first practice in Scarborough in 1958.
Recognized by the medical community for his expertise in cataract surgery, corneal transplants, contact lenses and refractive surgery, he pioneered the development of the intraocular lens for cataract surgery. He was also one of the first in North America to use this procedure and to practice laser vision correction.
A graduate of the University of Toronto (U of T) Medical School, he’s been a full clinical professor at U of T’s Facility of Medicine since 1969, been on the faculty at Toronto’s Centennial College since 1965 and spent 35 years as Chief of Ophthalmology at Scarborough General Hospital.
A dedicated volunteer, Dr. Stein has performed delicate eye surgery in third-world countries where blindness runs rampant. He’s also worked with Dr. Maxwell Bochner of The Bochner Eye Institute in Toronto for more than 10 years.
He’s received the Lifetime Membership Award from the Ontario Medical Association, the Scarborough General Hospital Board of Governors’ Chairman’s Award, the 200 Bi-Centennial Scarborough Civic Award of Merit and the Scarborough Civic Award of Merit.
Ron Watson – Community
Former school trustee and city councilor, wrote the successful book, Keep ’Em Rolling: A History of the Canadian National Railway, which served as a basis for the engineering field studies of what is now the Rogers Centre. Toronto City Council re-named Tam O’Shanter Park, Ron Watson Park in his honour.
Ron Watson is a former school trustee and city councillor, who remembers the population of Scarborough was 250,000, when he and his wife arrived in 1956.
Ron worked in sales and marketing for a Scarborough-based company before finding his way into public service in 1964, when he was elected as a school trustee. Voted onto municipal council in 1966, he remained there, with only a few brief retirements, until 1997. Ron ran in 13 Scarborough elections and has served on dozens of boards and committees. In 1996 he chaired the year-long bicentennial celebrations for the former City of Scarborough.
In 1985, Ron Watson authored Keep ‘Em Rolling: A History of the Canadian National Railway, which was also a hit south of the border. The book later served as a basis for the engineering field studies of what is now the Rogers Centre.
In recognition of his contribution and long-service to Scarborough, Toronto City Council honoured Ron in 2005 by renaming Tam O’Shanter Park the Ron Watson Park.
Artist, author and newspaper columnist with The Scarborough Mirror, Ron is affectionately dubbed the “Mayor of Agincourt” and still resides in Scarborough.