While there are countless examples of people who have made Peterborough their home and quickly made a positive difference in the lives of others, few can hold a candle to the varied contributions made by Terry McLaren.
Arriving in Peterborough in 1995, Terry was appointed deputy chief of what was then the Peterborough-Lakefield Community Police Service before being named Chief of the department two years later. When he retired from that position in the summer of 2008, Terry had completed 37 years in policing – 24 of those years with the Niagara Police Service.
Terry’s service to his new community began in earnest when he became a member of the Kiwanis Club of Peterborough. Serving three terms as president of the service club, he also chaired a number of committees. Terry’s Kiwanis work brought forth a number of honours for him – Kiwanian of the Year in 2011, the Kiwanis Distinguished Service Award in 2012 and, in 2013, the Citizen of the Year Award from the Kiwanis Foundation of Canada and the Kiwanis Life Membership distinction.
If that was the extent of Terry’s service that would be impressive enough – but it’s just the tip of the proverbial iceberg, with his work on behalf of the YWCA and Ontario Special Olympics standing out. For the former, Terry was co-chair of the Week Without Violence Committee for seven years and served as a cabinet member for the Safe Haven Capital Campaign that led to the building of a new women’s shelter. For the former, he was host and co-Chair of the Ontario Special Olympics Spring Games in 1999 and was host of the Ontario Special Olympics Summer Games in 2004.
Earlier, in 1998 he volunteered for, and was a member of the Ontario Spring Games Committee.
Truth be known, there are few major community events that haven’t benefited from Terry’s involvement. In 1996, Terry was a member of the Memorial Cup Committee that oversaw the Canadian junior hockey championship tournament; he was a member of the Peterborough Regional Health Centre Strategic Planning Committee for four years; he volunteered with the Peterborough Festival of Trees; served as past-President of the Peterborough Family YMCA; and from 2008 to the present is a volunteer off-ice official with the Ontario Hockey League.
Terry’s community service has been duly recognized. Along with three Community Betterment citations from the City of Peterborough, he was a finalist for the United Way’s Scholfield Award of Distinction; was inducted into the Ontario Special Olympics Hall of Fame; and was invested as a Member of the Order of Merit of Canada of Police Forces in recognition of his community service and leadership.
- Photo Courtesy of Clifford Skarstedt, The Peterborough Examiner