Harkin, James Bernard
James Bernard Harkin, environmentalist (b at Vankleek Hill, Ont 30 Jan 1875; d at Ottawa 27 Jan 1955). He worked in Ottawa as a newspaperman 1893-1901 and then served as secretary to Clifford SIFTON
and Frank OLIVER
, successive ministers of the interior. When a distinct parks branch was established by the ministry in 1911, Harkin became its first commissioner. With skilful eloquence he promoted the concept of unspoiled but publicly accessible wilderness, believing that parks represented the moral value of outdoor recreation, a haven from degenerate cities. His boundless energy pushed the parks system into 25 years of expansion. An acknowledged leader in wildlife conservation, he was instrumental in framing the Migratory Birds Convention Act in 1917.
Links to Other Sites
Face to Face: The Canadian Personalities Hall
"Face to Face" features outstanding Canadians whose ideas and contributions have transformed this country. Click on the photos in "Meet the Personalities" to see their biographies. From the Canadian Museum of Civilization.