Koerner - Vancouver
Walter Koerner was born in Czechoslovakia and it was there that,
through his family's lumber business, he developed his expertise
in the forest industry.
In 1939, Dr.
Hoerner and his brothers immigrated to Canada and founded the Alaska
Pine and Cellulose Company of which he was President. The company
flourished until in 1957, it became Rayonier Canada Limited with
Dr. Koerner was President and later Chairman of the Board until
his retirement in 1973.
company was instrumental in promoting the use of hemlock, previously
considered undesirable. Through expert techniques, his company made
the wood fully competitive in Europe and expanded its use until
it has become one of the leading wood species used in British Columbia.
has always supported the need for good forest management and has
greatly contributed to numerous studies and hearings concerned with
retirement he has devoted his efforts to improving the quality of
life for British Columbians: * in the health care field, as Founding
Chairman of the University of British Columbia Hospital; * and in
the arts community, as one of the Province's leading benefactors.
He is honorary Life President of both the Vancouver Art Gallery
and the Vancouver Symphony Society.
Over a span
of more than fifty years, Dr. Koerner has been a most notable philanthropist,
donating millions of dollars to educational institutions and other
public organizations and endeavors.
Among his many
honours, Dr. Koerner is a Companion of the Order of Canada, and
holds an honorary Doctor of Laws from U.B.C.