Jim Pattison

Philanthropist and entrepreneur Jim Pattison.

Jim Pattison was awarded the Freedom of the City award on January 23, 2014.

One of Canada’s most successful entrepreneurs

Jim Pattison left the University of British Columbia to immerse himself in business, starting out as a car salesman. From there, Jim’s extraordinary knack for entrepreneurship led him to build an international business empire that today includes car dealerships, media, advertising, food, entertainment, and finance.

The Jim Pattison Group, of which he is chairman, CEO and president, is headquartered in Vancouver and employs over 35,000 people in more than 400 locations worldwide. Pattison continues to be one of the most sought-after thinkers in the business world.

A generous philanthropist and true to his Vancouver upbringing

Together with his family, Pattison is a generous philanthropist, donating millions to causes that include health care, and many educational, faith-based and community organizations. He has also served on numerous boards and foundations, including as Chairman of Expo 86, a watershed moment in the growth and development of our city.

Pattison is the recipient of numerous well-deserved honours for his business achievements and philanthropy, including appointment as an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1987 and the Order of British Columbia in 1990.

Pattison remains a dedicated and loyal Vancouverite and can still be found playing his trumpet in support of numerous worthy causes benefitting the people of the city he loves.

About the Freedom of the City award

The Freedom of the City is the highest award given by the City of Vancouver. The City grants the award only in exceptional cases to individuals of the highest merit. The recipient is usually someone who has gained national and international acclaim in the arts, business, or philanthropy, and who has brought recognition to Vancouver through his or her achievements.

The City began honouring individuals with the Freedom of the City Award in 1936.

Recipients of the award are recognized during a special ceremony at Council, which consists of the reading and presentation of a framed scroll, the Freedom Medal, and a decal that permits free parking at City parking meters. Recipients have their names inscribed in the Book of Freedoms and are entitled to be called Freeman of the City of Vancouver.

Members of City Council nominate individuals for the award. According to the Vancouver Charter (Section 205), these nominations must be approved by unanimous vote of Council.