Charls Gendron

While I made a 35-year career in the Canadian Armed Forces Medical Corps and with an Operational deployment to Afghanistan, trains have been a major staple through my life.  As young as 7 years old, I was following my father on CHRA steam excursions behind the likes of 6167, 6218 and later CPR E8A1800’s across Quebec, Ontario and Vermont. I also spent countless hours building a basement layout in my home town of Trois-Rivieres, QC.

Having had a variety of military assignments, I had the chance to further my train interest in many regions of the country, and I have owned a business in model trains for the last 27 years.  Although I was a member at large of BRS for years, moving to Ottawa in 1998 gave me the chance to be more “hands on“ within the society and I have been part of the Dirty Hand Club since. I have developed great skills with that association and will admit to having a deep if not “fanatic” interest in railway preservation.

Now as President of the Society for the next two years, this interest will be put to the test as we move to a very important and new phase in our presence and involvement with what I called the “Experience” of the new Canada Science and Technology Museum. I hope to make this a rewarding experience for all.

 

Picture of Doug Wilson

I've spent my whole life in the company of trains. I'm a second generation railroader, being the son of a Lieutenant in the CN Police Department. My father joined the railway the year that I was born and as a result of my father's career, I grew up next to the tracks in such railway towns as Jellicoe, Stratford, Fort Erie and Hornepayne. 

I'm a career railroader, joining CN in 1969. I held unionized positions such Crew Dispatcher, Engine Watchman/Hostler and Train Order Operator. Having acquired that grounding, I moved into management working in the Personal and Labour Relations Department in Montreal and Toronto. I found I wasn't getting enough exposure to trains, so I went through CN's Operations Training program and worked as a Trainmaster in Capreol, Toronto Union Station, Don Yard, Sarnia and Fort Erie. I later became Manager Special Projects, working on projects such as the new St. Clair Tunnel in Sarnia. My final position at CN was Director of Interline Management, where I was involved initially in network rationalization studies and then in the creation and sale of 20 of CN's partner short lines in Canada and the United States.  I retired from CN at the end of 2000 and accepted a position as Vice President of Trillium Railway, operating short lines in the Niagara Peninsula and south western Ontario.

I've enjoyed collecting railway antiques along the way, ranging from Dining Car China all the way up to a Track Motor Car. I'm a relative new comer to Ottawa having moved here after I  retired from Trillium in 2009. Since coming to Ottawa I have been on the Board of Directors for the Bytown Railway Society and a member of Ottawa Valley Associated Railroaders. My interests include modelling in HO and I have an extensive railway photo collection. 

 

Picture of Jack Loucks

Photo courtesy of Dave Boyd.

What do you like to do in your spare time? "Puttering" (as my wife calls it). Playing guitar. Camping.

What inspires you? Witnessing our DHC volunteers in action.

Why are you in nonprofit work? What emotional reasons? I grew up in a family that helped those in need, volunteered and gave back to the community. Seeing people's genuine, heartfelt, reaction when you've helped them without expecting anything in return, is a pretty good reason.

Who is a hero of yours? Terry Fox. Every-time I think about what Terry accomplished, I'm very humbled.

What’s something quirky about you? I am also in the Drum Corps with the Ottawa Police Services Pipe Band.