Alfred H. SAVAGE (1930 - 2015)

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  • "Our sincerest heartfelt condolences to Alfred H. Savage..."
    - Maria and Helene Riedyk
  • "Dear Savage Family, My Father, the late Douglas Fluhrer,..."
    - Mark Fluhrer
  • "To Alf's Family, My husband Christopher met Alf at the..."
  • "Carrie-May.... My sincerest condolences to; You, Len,..."
  • "Dear Georgia, So sorry to hear about Alf. You may recall..."
    - Marjorie Wallens
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SAVAGE, Alfred H.
March 29, 1930 – January 24, 2015
Alfred was born and raised in Sarnia Ontario. He graduated from the Niagara Parks School of Horticulture in Niagara Falls where he met and married his beloved wife, Georgia Jean Bullock in 1952.
Alf was committed to public service. He was a horticulturist, naturalist and avid outdoorsman who enjoyed fishing hunting, canoeing and hiking. From military bayonets to antique tobacco tins, orchids to rhododendrons, Alf and Georgia's collections and gardens where remarkable.
Notwithstanding his busy professional life Alf always had time for his children, his grandchildren and his friends. Road trips, fishing trips and garden parties where frequent. Alfred was generous to a fault and he cherished the special relationships that he nurtured with his colleagues and neighbors over the years.
Alf and Georgia returned to Sarnia in 1952 where he joined his father as a partner in the family business, Savage Greenhouses and Garden Centre. Following ten successful years at the greenhouse Alf moved to the public sector joining the Sarnia Board of Education as Superintendent of Buildings Grounds and Maintenance. He sat on the City of Sarnia Planning Board and was an active member on the American School Bus Official Association.
In 1966, he was appointed Commissioner of Parks and Recreation for the Borough of York in Metropolitan Toronto and was soon after appointed to the Government of Ontario Select Committee on the Construction Sector. While in York he toured and developed case studies on European urban parks systems presenting his findings to urban planners from across Canada. During this period Alf was a Director with the Ontario and Canadian Parks and Recreation Association and an effective advocate for the development of the Canadian urban park system and active recreation.
In 1972, Alf was appointed General Manager of the City of Edmonton Parks & Recreation Department – at the time, the largest single urban park organization in North America. In 1977, he was appointed Commissioner of Public Affairs for the City of Edmonton, which included responsibility for the departments of Parks and Recreation, Fire, Police, Social Services, Health, Libraries, Planning, Real Estate, Bylaw Enforcement and Housing.
During his tenure with the City of Edmonton Alf played a lead role in the development of the North Saskatchewan River Valley Parks' System, the Muttart Conservatory, Ft. Edmonton Park and the John Jansen Nature Center. Alf was committed to the promotion and preservation of wilderness and natural spaces within the city. He served as a Director of the 1978 Commonwealth Games Foundation, was the City representative on the board of the Edmonton Exhibition Association and served as President of the Canadian Parks & Recreation Association. Alf was an enthusiastic Eskimos and Drillers fan and the Cities representative for professional sports organizations. Alf was instrumental in the development and construction of Commonwealth Stadium and the Edmonton Coliseum. Alf played a significant role in the founding of the Edmonton Rowing Club, was a charter member of the Old Strathcona Historic Foundation and a Director of the Citadel Theatre.
In 1982, Alf was appointed Chief General Manager of the Toronto Transit Commission, President of the Gray Coach Lines and Senior Director of the Toronto Transit Consultants. He was a member of the Board of the Canadian National Exposition and an advocate for Heritage Toronto. During his tenure the TTC experienced record ridership levels, opened the Scarborough RT and introduced articulated streetcars to the TTC fleet.
"Trains, Planes & Automobiles" In 1987 Alfred and Georgia took their show on the road and moved to the USA. Alf was appointed Executive Director of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority and President of Metropolitan Rail in Buffalo, New York. He lead NAFTA through a period of unprecedented challenges and growth. In 1990 he was hired by Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley as Chief Executive Officer of the Chicago Transit Authority to stabilize and revitalize the Windy Cities legendary transit system.
By 1992 Alf had completed his agenda with the CTA and returned home to Alberta. Alf and Georgia settled in Calgary, setting up shop in Springbank. Alf quickly assumed a prominent role with the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta. Weekend trips to Belt Sander Races in the US with Ralph's "Kitchen Cabinet" fit with Alf's approach to life. He served as the Executive Director of the Alberta School Bus Association and continued his life-long passion for horticulture as a dedicated volunteer, advocate, Director and Chairman of Olds College. In 1998, Alf was elected President of the PC Party of Alberta. His public service continued with him serving as Chairman of the Alberta Automotive Rates Insurance Board and as a member of the Alberta Municipal Government Board. Alf lectured extensively on urban transportation and planning including engagements in Peru, Bolivia, China and Poland. In 2008 Alf retired to Edmonton where he reconnected with old friends and enchanted new ones with his friendship, loyalty and wonderful presence.
Alfred was the son of Harry and Isabelle Savage (nee McMahon). In 2009 Alf was predeceased by his wife Georgia. He is survived by his children, Michael, Eric (Sonya), Regina (Wayne), Carrie May (Len) and LJ (Donna). He leaves behind nine grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; brother, Bruce (Elizabeth) and many loving nieces and nephews.
A Memorial Service will be held February 6 at 3:00 p.m. at the "Capital Theatre", Ft. Edmonton Park, Fox Drive. A Celebration of Alf's life will follow at the Alfred H. Savage Centre, Whitemud Park.
In lieu of flower tributes, donations to the Fort Edmonton Foundation would be appreciated. https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/fort-edmonton-foundation/
To send condolences, please visit www.connelly-mckinley.com


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Connelly-McKinley Funeral Home
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Published in The Edmonton Journal from Jan. 30 to Feb. 4, 2015
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