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Charles Boyer Brown

Recipient of Gold Key Award (1959)

Freemen - Charles Boyer Brown

Charles Boyer Brown was born on June 16, 1894 in the town of Ongar, Essex, England. He came to Canada as a young child with his parents Jean and Percy Brown. In 1903, the family settled in New Westminster and by 1911, Charles had joined the Burnaby municipal staff working as an office boy.

The outbreak of World War One interrupted Charlie’s career as he immediately enlisted with the Royal Engineers and served from 1915 to 1918. While overseas he met and married Lillian Bernice Bryan and they returned to Canada together after the war and Charles resumed his position in municipal administration.

For a short time, Charles was appointed as the Municipal Assessor, but in 1927 he became the Assistant Municipal Clerk. In 1933, Charles was made Municipal Clerk, a post he held until he retired in 1959. Charles has also been credited with playing a significant role in administering the city while it was under the rule of the provincial commission from 1932-1942.

Recognized for his expertise in civic affairs, Charles was appointed by the provincial government to a committee formed to review and revise the Municipal Act. He was also a member of the BC Municipal Officers’ Association from its formation in 1936 and was made its chair in 1953. While these civic duties occupied much of his time, Charles still managed to participate as a volunteer on many sport and youth clubs in the city and served as the secretary for the Kingsway Rotary Club.

In recognition of his outstanding contributions to Burnaby, both paid and volunteer, Charles was presented with the Gold Key award in 1959, the same year he finally retired from municipal administration. During Charles’ lifetime, many changes took place in the Municipality that he loved. He saw Burnaby grow in population and progress and he could be proud of the significant part he played in that growth and development.

Charles Brown died on August 11, 1981.

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