Evans, Joseph Cooper

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Evans, Joseph Cooper

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  • Assistant Registrar, 1945-1948; Registrar, 1948-1958; Director of Alumni Affairs, 1958-1970; Consultant in Alumni Affairs to the President, 1970-1973.

Joseph Cooper Evans was born in Bradford Ontario in 1904 and attended school in Bradford and Barrie. Following graduation he attended Toronto Normal School, then returned to Bradford as a teacher for two years. At the end of the 1935 school year he sought employment with a commercial firm in Toronto. A year later he left the firm to continue his education at the University of Toronto.

In the autumn of 1926, he entered University College as a freshman, graduating with a general B.A. three years later. While there, he took an active interest in sports, especially hockey and lacrosse, winning a championship T in the former and a first T in the latter. He was also active in the Delta Upsilon fraternity.

Following graduation he joined an investment firm in Toronto, McLeod, Young & Weir. After three years he moved to the United States as a trainee in chain store management, and rose to the position of assistant store manager with the W.T. Grant Co. By 1934 he was back in Canada, attending the Ontario College of Education. This led to an eight-year teaching career in Carlton Public School in Toronto.

When World War II broke out he went into training as a Reserve Officer with the University of Toronto, COTC. He was commissioned the following year and saw active service from 1942 until hostilities ended. He then returned to Toronto to begin a new career at the University of Toronto.

He was appointed Assistant Registrar in 1945 and four years later he succeeded A.B. Fennell as Registrar, a position he held for the next decade. In 1958 he accepted the new post of Director of Alumni Affairs and a year later resigned as Registrar to devote his time to it. Evans retired in 1970 but continued as a consultant in Alumni Affairs to the President until 1973.

In the interim, he maintained his interest in sports and military matters. He served on the Athletic Directorate for 12 years from 1961 and was also chairman of the University of Toronto Loan Committee for the Department of Veterans Affairs. He was also a member of the Advisory Committee of Canadian Universities to the Minister of National Defence and to the Minister of Immigration with reference to the resettlement of Hungarian student refugees after the 1956 uprising.

In 1935 he married Mabel Black from South Carolina; they has a son and two daughters. The son, Donald, broke with family tradition by attending the University of Western Ontario. But Sally Jo and Frances both received degrees from the University of Toronto, as had Evans’ father and five brothers and sister.


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