Hall of Famer
Inducted in 1969
C.N.E. Manager of Sports Department
Appointed to National Advisory Council on Fitness and Amateur Sport
Inducted in the Amateur Athletic Union of Canada's Hall of Fame
George Duthie was the driving force behind numerous amateur athletic events, programs, and associations throughout his life. A native of Scotland, Duthie came to Canada at an early age and soon became involved with the Boys Department of the West End YMCA. He gained significant experience in the organizational aspects of amateur sport as manager of their junior basket ball team and general manager of the Broadview Boys Fall Fair. After serving two years as a City of Toronto alderman, Duthie joined the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) as Manager of the Sports Department in 1933. Under his auspices, many of the CNE sports events took on national prominence. Long distance swims became a main attraction of the fair. In the 1950s, Aquarama shows were fair mainstays. Several times, the World Water Ski championships were held on the CNE waterfront in conjunction with the fair. Duthie served for five years in the Royal Canadian Air Force during the Second World War. In charge of Sports and Entertainment for Number 1 Training Command, he organized the Inter-Service Leagues in basketball, boxing, wrestling, football, and hockey. The Number 1 Training Command Track and Field Championships was the largest one-day meet ever held in Canada with more than 1,000 service people competing. During his 35 years with the CNE, Duthie served on numerous committees of the Amateur Athletic Union of Canada. He was a co-founder of the Canadian Boating Federation, the governing body for motorboat racing in Canada, as well as the Canadian Water Ski Association. In addition, he was an active member of the Royal Canadian Yacht Club, the Boulevard Club, and the National Yacht Club. In the days before government sponsorship of amateur athletes, Duthie traveled across Canada to promote the Canadian Olympic Training Program. He was successful in convincing the Royal Canadian Legion to supporting track and field activities nationwide. In 1967, Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson appointed him to the National Advisory Council on Fitness and Amateur Sport. Duthie's dedication to sport was lifelong. He was involved in management and public relations with the YMCA throughout his career, and he was still on the Board of Directors at the Etobicoke YM/YWCA at the time of his death in 1968.