Jack Saywell had a strong connection to Lake Cowichan, BC

“University Professor Emeritus John Tupper (Jack) Saywell, noted Canadian historian and member of the Founders Society of York University, died on April 20, in Toronto. He was 82,” reads a recent release from the York University newsletter [YFile], wrote Rolli Gunderson in BC’s Lake Cowichan Gazette June 6, in an obituary that included a photo of Saywell as a baseball player in 1947.

Here, in the Town of Lake Cowichan, the name Saywell represents a whole lot more than just a park, wrote Gunderson. Not to deny it, Saywell Park is an attractive park, which is positioned in a prominent and very scenic area of town centre near the beautiful Cowichan River.

The Saywell name first appeared here in 1937, with the arrival of John F.T. Saywell, who was hired as the area’s first high school principal. Soon, his family, which included wife Vera, a kindergarten teacher, and their two sons, John (Jackie) and Bill, were fully integrated into the community.

After graduation from Lake Cowichan High School in 1954, the oldest son Jack Jr. left the lake to attend the University of Toronto. It was the first step towards a long and distinguished career that spanned a lifetime.

His brother Bill recently commented, “Many still refer to Canada’s third largest university (York) as the house that Jack built,” adding, “He was very young, very creative, extremely hard-working and terribly intelligent, and he really did a magnificent job in creating the foundation of York University.”

In 1980, York conferred on Saywell its inaugural University Professorship for service and scholarly achievement. In his later years, Professor Saywell left York’s administration and returned to scholarly work researching, writing and supervising graduate students in the history department.

He retired in 1997 at age 70, and is survived by his wife Suzanne Firth [director, Office of Communications, Media & Public Relations in the Schulich School of Business], his four children, 12 grandchildren and his brother William (Bill) Saywell and his family.

Jackie Saywell (as he was known in his Lake Cowichan years) always retained his connection to Cowichan Lake, and was known throughout his lifetime as “the kid from Cowichan Lake, British Columbia.”

Osgoode grad ran up Mount Kilimanjaro

Farah Esmail [JD ’98], seven-year veteran corporate counsel at a growing education-technology company in Baltimore, began her term as treasurer and president-elect of the Association of Corporate Counsel, Baltimore chapter in January, wrote Baltimore, MD’s Daily Record May 31, adding her Osgoode Hall Law School credential in a sidebar list.

ACC is the largest regional bar association in the [US] and in the world for in-house lawyers, serving over 25,000 members in more than 70 countries.

Esmail has worked since 2004 at Connections Education LLC, a school management company that provides distance education products and services to schools across the country and in China…. She will leave Connections at the end of its fiscal year in June to relocate to Toronto, where she plans to pursue corporate counsel work.

Adventure travel is nothing new for this avid runner and East African native. Born and raised in Kenya until she was 16, Esmail said she and her family always wanted to climb Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro, the world’s highest free-standing mountain. In November, Esmail, her father and a number of extended family members took on the challenge.

OSC’s new vice-chair is an Osgoode prof

The Ontario Securities Commission has filled a hole in its full-time staff by appointing Mary Condon as vice-chair, replacing Lawrence Ritchie who was seconded to the Canadian Securities Transition Office, wrote The Globe and Mail June 6.

Condon has been a commissioner for more than three years and will assume the new position for two years. She is also a professor at [York University’s] Osgoode Hall Law School and is an expert on securities law.