Breaking New Ground—Stories from Defence Construction Breaking_new_ground - Page 17

Dick Johnson later summed up those first years: The feeling in DCL in the early days was one of excitement over the challenges provided by the sheer size and variety of the projects. With fresh memories of World War II and the urgency of the Korean Crisis, there was a sense of drive and importance that inspired splendid teamwork. This was followed by satisfaction and pride as jobs were completed in spite of material shortages and tight labour supply. Did You Know? From its inception, Defence Construction (1951) Limited was commonly referred to as DCL. In 1990, the Federal Identity Program Policy came into effect and the Corporation became known as Defence Construction Canada, or DCC for short. Going forward CMHC was one source of manpower for the new DCL; as Dick Johnson had noted, the second was the construction industry, which cooperated by making key personnel available. These were often known as dollar-a-year men, so-called because private industry offered their services in management capacities to DCL for a nominal $1.00 per year as a civic gesture. Some of the notable initial staff included Grange Kingsmill, Bob Shaw, John Stirling, Dick Balfour and Emmet Molyneux, the first three of whom served successively as Chief Engineer. The engineering and architectural professions similarly gave full support to the fledgling organization. With his background in the construction industry, Dick Johnson was noted for his tough but understanding approach that emphasized fairness to all parties. Joe Bland paid tribute to that approach, calling it the core of DCL’s esprit. There is a bond among us that comes from a common commitment to integrity and to excellence. We know that excellence is a goal and that integrity is a fundamental. And knowing this, we build on a sound foundation. These are high-sounding ideas, but to me they are appropriate to the company. BREAKING NEW GROUND DEFENCE CONSTRUCTION CANADA 7