Professor Emeritus, Plant Science
George W Eaton was born in Upper Canard, Nova Scotia, in 1933. After matriculation from Kings County Academy, he attended the Nova Scotia Agricultural College and the Ontario Agricultural College of the University of Toronto where he obtained a BSc (Agriculture) in 1955. Graduate work at the Ohio State University led to the award of a PhD in 1959. Between high school and college, he operated the family farm in partnership with his father.
After graduation from Guelph, George was Fruit and Vegetable Extension Specialist and, after Ohio State, Research Scientist at Vineland Station, Ontario. He joined the Faculty of Agriculture at UBC in 1963. His main teaching and research subjects were pomology, biometrics and design of experiments and he was always a computer enthusiast and consultant. An expert in berry crops and tree fruits, as well as experimental design and statistical analysis, he rose to the rank of Professor in 1974, and served as Acting Head of the Department of Plant Science in 1988/89. Well over 100 refereed publications attest to his significant scholarly contributions in horticultural research. He represented the Faculty on UBC Senate from 1986 to 1993. In addition he served on the Senates of Regent College and the Vancouver School of Theology and on a number of University and Faculty task forces and committees. An accredited Professional Agrologist, he was a Charter Member of the Ontario Institute of Professional Agrologists, a member of the BC Institute of Agrologists and a member of the Sigma Tau Upsilon Honorary Agricultural Society. During his professional career he was a member of many professional agricultural and scientific societies in Canada, the USA and the United Kingdom and served as a professional consultant in Horticulture and design of experiments in Sri Lanka and Indonesia. He has traveled widely and visited several universities and research institutions in North America, Europe and Asia. He spent one year as a visiting Professor at the University of Bristol, UK. He retired as Professor of Horticulture in 1995.
Dr Eaton has been active in community service. He was a founding member of the BC Sleep Apnea Society and its first Secretary and Registrar. He served as a Private in the North Nova Scotia Highlanders, Lieutenant in the Lincoln and Welland Regiment, Captain in the Vancouver Militia District and Major in the Militia Area Pacific. He retired as Area Personnel Officer in 1984 with over 22 years of accumulated service and he was decorated with the Canadian Forces Decoration and Clasp. In addition he played many sports recreationally and was a member of school, college and university basketball and soccer teams. He was an avid touring motorcyclist and a life member of several BC, national and international shooting organizations.
In Freemasonry, George was initiated in Scotia Lodge 28 GRNS in 1956. He is a recipient of the 60-year long service award of the Grand Lodge of BC & Yukon. He is a past presiding officer of numerous Masonic and concordant Orders with grand rank in many of them. He is a member of the Knights of the York Rite Cross of Honor, the York Rite Sovereign College of North America (Order of the Purple Cross), Holy Royal Arch Knight Templar Priests, Commemorative Order of St Thomas of Acon, The Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite, Gizeh Shriners, the Knight Masons of America and many others. In 2004 – 2005 he was Grand First Principal of Royal Arch Masons of BC & Yukon and chaired its Standing Committee on Constitution and Jurisprudence for many years. In 2001-2002 he was a member of the Standing Committee on Jurisprudence and the Masonic Commission of the Grand Lodge of BC & Yukon.
Dr and Mrs Dorothy Eaton were married in 1956, reside in Vancouver, have two daughters, Edith McNary and Vera Eaton, three grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
Updated by George Eaton, 2016.
Photo: UBC Archives – Historical Photographs