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This cop bought
the doughnut shop

Ron Joyce

In 1965 Ron Joyce and his wife operated a small Dairy Queen outlet on Main Street in Hamilton, Ontario. His wife ran it: he worked there while not on duty with the Hamilton Police Force

One day Ron, 35, showed an advertising salesman a boarded- up gas station around the corner on Ottawa Street. He said he was resigning from the police force to open a doughnut/ coffee shop. He explained how he and NHL hockey star Tim Horton were forming a 50-50 partnership with plans to franchise a chain of doughnut shops under Timís name.

The salesman urged him not to.

"Ron," he said "you have four kids, a good job, and a pension waiting down the line."

If you know Ron Joyce you will understand why he would not listen. He quit the force, opened a Tim Hortons Donut Shop, then another, then another. And as they say, the rest is history.

It was not all clear sailing for this native of Tatamagouche, Nova Scotia. When Tim Horton died in a car crash in 1974 they had 40 stores. Ron bought Timís 50 per cent and continued to apply his operational and marketing genius to grow the company.

He nearly lost it all in the early Ď80s when interest rates climbed above 20 per cent.

But Ron is a determined survivor, The chain continued growing. When he sold to Wendyís in 1995 for a reported $600 million there were 1000 stores. Ron remained active with the combined company.

True to his Nova Scotia roots he has developed and owns the world class Fox Harbír Golf Course in Tatamagouche, where he maintains a home.

Over coffee in my office in 1997 Ron was beginning to show signs of weariness with the pressures of business, which included his partnership in the Calgary Flames. We both had a good laugh when I reminded him that had he taken my advice in 1965 and remained with the police force, he would likely be enjoying a comfortable worry free pension.

Next week read the story of the hard rock author.  He is another Canadian Achiever.
Additional information:
Dick Drew admiring the Order of Canada pin Ron Joyce wears proudly wherever he goes. Picture taken in Dick Drew's office lobby 1997 when Dick reminded Ron that if Ron had taken his advice in 1965 he would be retired with a pension from the Hamilton Police Dept.



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