BIOGRAPHIES AND INTERVIEW EXCERPTS
James Gibson Lorimer | The Freeman Legacy
James Gibson Lorimer
When James Lorimer joined the Canadian Scottish Regimental Infantry in 1943, the Lorimer family became the only family in Canada to send four sons to war in the same battalion. After serving in northern Europe, Lorimer returned to British Columbia, where he worked as a longshoreman, fisherman, and shipyard worker, while earning a law degree from the University of British Columbia, and raising a young family with his wife Cicely.
In 1957, Lorimer became politically active, running for federal office. Although he lost that bid, he turned to municipal politics, and in 1966 won a seat on Burnaby Council. Two years later, he moved on to the provincial government as an NDP candidate. He represented the Burnaby-Willingdon riding provincially for many years.
As Minister of Municipal Affairs, and Minister of Commercial Transport, Lorimer doubled the number of transit vehicles, extending service to areas beyond Vancouver, and oversaw the design and construction of the SeaBus system. He also oversaw the expansion of the Burnaby General Hospital, and served as a director on the BC Hydro Board of Directors, and chaired the BC Harbours Board.
For his many years of public service, Lorimer was made a Freeman of the Municipality of Burnaby in 1990.
Lorimer died on October 25, 2012.