Key fundraiser has special connection with College


Gordon Cressy, George Brown Foundation’s new senior campaign associate,
gets firsthand insights into the college’s quality of education from his wife Joanne Campbell,
who is a full-time Chef School student.



Meet George Brown’s Friends of the Waterfront:

  • David Crombie, former mayor of Toronto
  • Jack Cockwell, Group Chair and Director, Brookfield Asset Management Inc.
  • G. Raymond Chang, Chancellor, Ryerson University
  • Hon. Jean Augustine, Fairness Commissioner for Ontario
  • Michael Decter, former Chair, Canadian Institute for Health Information and Health Council of Canada
  • Florence Wong, CEO, Yee Hong Centre for Geriatric Care
  • Dr. Paul Garfinkel, former CEO, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)
  • John Cassaday, President and CEO, Corus Entertainment
  • Martha Tory, Partner, Ernst & Young LLP 
  • Ruth Grant, former Chair, SickKids Foundation

One of George Brown’s key fundraisers gathers evidence for the quality of the College’s education almost daily – at his dinner table.
Senior Campaign Associate Gordon Cressy’s wife Joanne Campbell is currently a full-time Chef’s School student – and the skills she learns in her long days in the labs at 300 Adelaide often find their way into her cooking at home.


A good meal may boost Cressy’s appreciation for the College, but as a former Board of Governors member and one-time George Brown teacher, he’s already excited to tell the George Brown story to people who can help the College raise the money it needs to grow and expand its educational reach. “George Brown is now poised to take off,” he says, “It’s not going to be one of Toronto’s best kept secrets any longer.”

A former city Councillor, as is Campbell, Cressy has led community-building organizations such as the United Way of Greater Toronto, the Canadian Tire Foundation and the Learning Partnership, and has served as a Vice President in advancement for both The University of Toronto and Ryerson University.

Cressy helped both universities achieve their goals for growth by helping them raise millions of dollars. Now he joins the Foundation team to do the same for the College with its Campaign for George Brown – which aims to raise money from private donors to supplement government support for the College’s $250 million expansion vision.

And Gordon’s not working alone. He’s putting together a team of supporters called Friends of the Waterfront, who will extend the network of George Brown supporters in the community with highly credible peer-to-peer contacts, he says. “It’s putting George Brown on the radar screen for people who have the capability of supporting it.”

Personal appeals that touch both the heads and hearts of potential donors are a key ingredient in the early quiet phase of the campaign, Cressy says. The campaign is currently in its “quiet” phase, with a public launch planned for this fall.

Campbell, a former leader at the Metropolitan Toronto Housing Corporation and the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), needs no convincing about the value of a George Brown education. She’s been impressed by the quality of facilities and instruction at the College as well as the dedication and intelligence of her fellow students. “It’s a very supportive environment and there’s a lot of teamwork in the kitchen.”