We, in North Durham, are fortunate to have so many organizations interested the betterment of people in the forefront of their mission. One association, prevalent in many various events, is the Rotary Club. This year, for the second time in his life, Terry Coyne takes on the presidency of this great group of individuals, who do so much for our town.
Having just finished the third annual Ribfest, which was a complete success, Rotary is already looking for new challenges. They proudly fulfilled their recent commitment of raising $150,000 for the Oakridge Hospice and supporting the Port Perry Library, Camp Scugog, UOIT, Durham College, Lakeridge Hospital, and Operation Scugog, to name a few.
Rotary was formed in 1905, and now boasts 1.2 million members around the world. Their biggest claim to fame was the almost total eradication of polio, through constant fundraising and dedication. The two major fundraisers for the local organization, are the Port Perry Rotary Spring Gala, and the Port Perry Waterfront Ribfest, both of which require a tremendous amount of volunteer time.
If you had an opportunity to visit Ribfest, you will have noticed the close attention paid to details. Tables were constantly wiped and refuse was separated into recycling bins by volunteers. They even brought a falconer in, to keep the seagulls at bay. Five Ribbers accompanied 23 other vendors, all positioned around the 994 chairs at 134 tables. 170 volunteers were there to guarantee a flawless event, and 12 bands entertained the crowds.
The event was successful and Terry, with fellow Rotarians and spouses, presented a cheque of $50,000 to the Oakridge Hospice. Another presentation was made to the Hospital Auxiliary, of more than $8,000, from donations at the gate. The money will go toward increasing the comfort of patients and their families.
So who is the man serving a second term as president?
Terry Coyne was born in the small town of Thessalon, about an hour outside of Sault Ste. Marie, on the north of Lake Superior. His mother, who worked at Eaton’s and his dad, employed by White Rose Oil, moved the family to Sault Ste. Marie, where Terry attended elementary and high school.
Always the entrepreneur, Terry, while in public school, bought seeds from a catalogue and sold them to people in his neighbourhood. In high school he delivered telegrams, bagged groceries at Loblaw’s and worked as a yard checker for the CPR. He had to track the railway cars that entered and left the yard.
After attending the Lake Superior State College, now known as University of Superior, Terry was offered a position with Algoma Steel, as an electronic repairman. In the late sixties, Terry met a nurse from St. Thomas, who was visiting a friend in the Sault, and in 1970 he and Nancy were married.
Ten years later Terry, Nancy and their three kids, packed up and moved to Simcoe, Ontario, where Terry started to work for American Can. From there he was transferred to Whitby, where he and a friend, founded Terdun Materials Management, a firm which did quality control for American Can.
With a recession looming in the wings, Terry and his business partner purchased Pineridge Sports Shop, on Queen Street in Port Perry, where Brocks for Kids is today. The store sold everything from skates to golf clubs, uniforms to running shoes.
In 1993 Terry sold his holdings in Terdun and looked after Pineridge full time. He decided to change direction, after an American firm flooded the Canadian market with sporting goods. He began to focus on the promotional side of the business and moved the store to the Bank of Montreal plaza on Scugog Street.
In 2006 Terry relocated Pineridge Impress, as it was now known, to North Port Road.
That was also the time Terry joined Rotary in an effort to improve his networking and business contacts. In 2010/11 he became president of the group and is a true advocate for the organization.
The Port Perry club is 30+ members strong, and is always looking for people wanting to contribute time to the community.
Along with helping less fortunate around the world, Rotary has a seat at the United Nations, and is an advocate for world peace.
Closer to home, the group also organizes an exchange program where young people from local areas are given opportunities to stay in a foreign country for a year. The organization partners with: the Oak Ridges Hospice of Durham; Lakeridge Health, Port Perry, to rebuild and update our community hospital; Community Care Durham North, to provide comfort and cheer at Christmas, and many others.
Terry Coyne is planning on spending more time with Rotary and his family, which now include five grandkids and a grand dog. Congratulations to Terry and the Port Perry Rotary Club, for making our community a better place to live.
Jonathan van Bilsen is an award winning photographer, published author, columnist and keynote speaker. Follow his adventures at photosNtravel.com
Jonathan van Bilsen
Join Jonathan van Bilsen in the Standard as he begins a series of feature articles on prominent residents of North Durham in his new column, The Story Behind The Person.