Tim Philp – President

Tim Philp has been involved in the Brantford community since 1963 and has a background in Electronics Engineering including designing computer controls for material handling equipment and railway locomotives. He also worked designing electronic warfare equipment for the Canadian Navy. Tim was a Host of the television program Politically Speaking for many years on Rogers Television. Tim has a long history in the volunteer sector and was involved in many non-profit organizations as director or officer, including: Vice-chairman and finance chair of the Brantford Public Library Board, The Boys and Girls Club, the Southern Ontario Library Service, Vice-chairman of the Ontario Library Trustees Association, Director of Sport Safety for the Ontario Underwater Council, Chairman of Theatre Brantford, Chair of Rosewood House, Chair of the Brant Community Social Planning Council, Director of the Brant United Way, Chairman, Director of the Your Homes board, and President and founder of the Brant FreeNet.

He is a current member of the City’s Heritage Committee and chairs the Prospect Point subcommittee. His name may be familiar to readers as he has been a columnist and feature writer for The Expositor. He currently writes a weekly science column called Thought Experiments.

He is employed as Executive Director of Rosewood House, a group home for people with mental health and addictions issues.

“I am very excited to take the helm of the Brant Historical Society and I hope to work hard to advance the interests of the Museum and local history preservation and the use of new technologies to bring history to everyone”


Wilhelm Hilgendag – Treasurer

Wilhelm Hilgendag immigrated to Canada in 1978 and started farming with his parents at Bow Park Farm, Brantford. He is a graduate of University of Guelph, Ridgetown Campus. Wilhelm runs a family farm, which specializes in pedigreed seed production and marketing of soybeans to food processors, worldwide. Leadership Positions: President of Brant County Federation of Agriculture, President of the Ontario Seed Growers Association, Treasurer of Faith Lutheran Church in Brantford. He has always been a “Canada Promoter” and is researching local agricultural development.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

  Michael-Allan Marion – Secretary

Michael-Allan Marion has been involved in the Brant community since 1992 as a political, municipal, city, county, agriculture and rural affairs journalist. He was a reporter at the Brantford Expositor for 26 years, covering county council and city beats, as well as life and times in Paris, Burford, St. George, Mount Pleasant and other communities. Before that, he was a reporter for four years at the Hamilton Spectator, from 1990 to 1994, and he was a correspondent for three decades for Ontario Farmer, supplying stories on the farm scene in Brant, Haldimand and Norfolk counties.

In his retirement, he is actively involved in numerous groups, including the Brant Historical Society.

“History and heritage were two of my passions during my journalistic career, particularly in small towns, which reflect my upbringing in the Ottawa Valley. After awhile it came to be in my soul.”


Douglas K. Summerhayes C.M., HRF – Director

More than 65 years of experience in all facets of management, marketing, operations, business development, product development, manufacturing process and technical development for many business organizations as an owner, senior manager and consultant.

An inveterate volunteer he has been an active member of many community and national trade, business and volunteer organizations over a period of more than 65 years. Co-founder of the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation [now Cystic Fibrosis Canada] with his wife Donna, President and CEO for 3 years. Founding Director of the Canadian Wood Pallet & Container Association, Secretary/Treasurer and CEO for 4 years. Served on Boards and Committees of several Brantford and Brant County community organizations that included Enterprise Brant, Myrtleville Museum, Ichthys Theatre Company, Brantford Jaycees and the City of Brantford Economic Development Advisory, Parks, Recreation & Waterfront Advisory and Canada Day Committees.

Jean Kendall – Director

Jean is a graduate of Pauline Johnson Collegiate.  She started her career at S.C. Johnson, where she worked for 7 years before marrying and moving to Boston, MA for 2 years.  While living in Boston, she supported her student husband by working at the Harvard Business School.  They moved back to Canada for a job opportunity in Toronto in 1975. A few years later, another career choice took the couple to Edmonton, AB for 10 years.  Upon returning to Ontario, Jean lived in the GTA for the next 20 years.  During this time, she raised a family and was involved with volunteer work. She volunteered at the schools her children attended and for the Heart & Stroke Foundation and the Canadian Cancer Society. Later on, Jean worked for Compass Group Canada.  After her retirement, she moved back to the Brantford Community.   Jean’s interest in history attracted her to the Brant Historical Society where she volunteers on the Events Committee.

 Leisah Marie Jansen – Director

Born and raised in Brantford, has spent most of her life there. Earliest memory is from when as a child walking with her Mother through the Downtown core, a vibrant commercial district then, her Mother pointed and said “Leisah look up” – from that day she felt moved by the built heritage around her. Known for her passionate concern for cultural heritage assets, advocacy did not occur until a politically charged situation in 2009, when she joined a small group of people trying to bring National awareness to the issue. She also became active in political engagement through Municipal, Provincial, and Federal electoral campaigns from that time, and to present day. She continues to sit on the Brantford Heritage Advisory Committee since her appointment as a citizen volunteer seven years ago. Employment background is research, photography, customer service, emergency and after hours dispatching, remote assistance, event booking. Graduate of Fanshawe College’s Photography program.