“I have been living my dream.” Tim Jones
When Tim grew up in Montreal he was the Youth Representative on the Hampstead Municipal and Recreation Association in the tiny community where he coached Bantam hockey and taught tennis. There were many volunteer opportunities and the seeds were planted which would cultivate a love for politics and volunteerism.
“My reward is seeing the benefits of what you do when you volunteer.”
Tim attended Concordia University and later moved to Aurora in 1976 and worked for Parks and Recreation at the City of North York for 25 years. As a former professional tennis instructor, he became the president of the tennis club. As the new guy in town, having only lived in Aurora for two years, he was surprised to be elected to council and served for 16 years until encouraged to run for Mayor. He was Aurora’s Mayor for 12 years.
Together with Don Cousens, former Mayor of Markham, Tim was the Founding CoChair at the conception of the Character Community Foundation of York Region in the year 2000. He was on the first Board of Governors, was Chair after leaving Mayor’s office and is now a Board of Governors member.
The Region of York headquarters on Yonge Street in Newmarket where his portrait was taken is significant because The Region of York has been an unseen pillar and part of the success of The Character Community Foundation. The first meeting was held at the venue and where the development of the attributes upon which the foundation is based was developed. The Region has supported the Foundation since the beginning.
The mandate of the Character Community Foundation is to educate the public, private, and nonprofit sectors about character development based on the 11 Character Attributes which are: Compassion, Courage, Fairness, Honesty, Inclusiveness, Initiative, Integrity, Optimism, Perseverance, Respect and Responsibility. Having experienced the political world for 28 years, the most important character traits in Tim’s view are: Respect and taking Responsibility for your actions.
“The most memorable moment for me was working with Don Cousens in getting the Character Community Foundation up and going – and incorporating the attributes into all that I attempt to do has had a profound effect on my approach to life, people and all that I do!”
Good character makes a positive difference in our neighbourhoods. A Character Community attracts people and businesses of character and their message speaks to all faiths and cultures.
“I call Don Cousens the ‘Godfather of Character’ and the Foundation would not have happened without his initiative. I am lucky that he asked me to tag along and between the two of us, we really believed in it and to still be recognised for the work that Character Community does means a lot.”
Tim has also been an Ambassador for Neighbourhood Network since 2008, a nonprofit communitybased organization that brings together volunteers with local charities and organizations to assist residents in need.
Tim’s career has led to extra give back opportunities such as being a Mayor’s Golf tournament committee member and cochair for Aurora Mayor tournaments. He has been a volunteer registrar at the Terry Fox Run since conception. At the Southlake Run and you’ll recognize him as the greeter wearing the lobster hat. He has been Master of Ceremonies for Aurora Historical Society Galas. Tim was an Aurora Sesquicentennial committee member and is on the Aurora Chamber of Commerce Golf Committee.
“I like people who are of the mind to strive for the best and make a success.” On being part of Portraits of Giving 2014 he said, “I know a number of people who have been selected for this and I think the world of them all. I am very proud to be in the company of those who have been selected both this year and in years past.”
He was awarded the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal and the Rotary Paul Harris Fellow for community work. Tim became Director of Development for CHATS in 2011.Tim intends to play golf and stay involved in the community for as long as he is able.