Class of 1988
Ephraim Diamond was a co-founder of Cadillac Fairview Corporation Limited, and served as its Chairman and CEO until 1979. He continued on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee until the company was sold in 1987. Whitecastle Investments, the family holding company, is now under the direction of his son, Carey Diamond.
Born to a poor immigrant family, Diamond graduated from Queen’s University in 1943 with an engineering degree. He entered the Royal Canadian Navy immediately, and spent the next three years serving as a radar officer – despite being chronically seasick. Once he was back on land, Diamond took a job in construction as a project engineer at Principal Investments. He stayed with the company for seven years before venturing out on his own. With two partners, Jack Kamin and Joe Berman, Diamond created Cadillac Contracting and Developments Ltd., the precursor of Cadillac-Fairview.
Diamond achieved lasting success with Cadillac-Fairview, which was once one of the largest real-estate empires in all of North America. His contributions to Canada were honored in 1994, when Diamond was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada. In recognition of his life-long humanitarian work he has received the 1980 Human Relations Award from the Canadian Council of Christians and Jews, in addition to the 1979 State of Israel Prime Minister's Medal for Humanitarian Services.
His activities included membership on the Advisory Board of the University of Toronto Centre for Research in Neurodegenerative Diseases, the Board of Governors of Mount Sinai Hospital, and the Board of Directors of the Kravis Center for the Performing Arts. He was also a Member and Honorary Director of the Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care.
Ephraim Diamond semi-retired in 1989, but continued to remain active in his business and community. He spent much of his new free time with his wife, Shirley, his four sons, and his grandchildren. Diamond passed away in 2008 at the age of 87.