Local author Tim Higgins and Heartland Associates has just published a new book about George Richardson, patriarch of the powerful Richardson family of Winnipeg. Entitled Just Common Sense: The Life and Times of George Taylor Richardson, the richly illustrated book will be launched on Thursday, December 16th from 2 to 4 pm in the lobby of the Western Canada Aviation Museum. Copies may also be purchased at the Aviation Museum’s Windsock Gift Shop.
For nearly 3 decades he was President and CEO of James Richardson & Sons, Limited, one of the oldest privately owned companies in Canada. With investments in aviation, agriculture, food processing, financial services, oil and gas exploration and property management, the company was more than a family firm. And George was more than just a company president. Like his father, James Armstrong Richardson, George was a dreamer but like his mother, Muriel, whom he succeeded, he was also a realist. Combining their talents, he led Canada into international grain sales with communist China, brokered deals with unions with a hands on appreciation of their work and brought the world’s oldest business enterprise, the Hudson’s Bay Company from London to a new home in Canada. He also investigated to the very roots of every venture the firm undertook during his tenure, and as a pioneer civilian pilot, flew all over North America in his own helicopter to see company operations for himself.
At home, George remains a straightforward, persuasive figure, a man who loves the outdoors and its bounty as well as the country that has been the stage for his family’s extraordinary and enduring success.
Higgins was given unprecedented access to the corporate archives of James Richardson & Sons Limited, and recorded hours of interviews with Richardson family members (including George himself), friends and business associates, which enabled him to compile an inside look at this private family.