Remembering Gordon C. Gray: A Legacy of Leadership and Philanthropy

July 2, 2024 4 min. read


Royal LePage® mourns the loss of former CEO, Gordon C. Gray, a visionary business leader and philanthropist whose contributions left an indelible mark on the Canadian real estate industry. Gray was a key player in the growth and success of Royal LePage, and will be fondly remembered for his professional accomplishments and humanity. 

Gray began his career in 1955 as the controller of A.E. LePage, eventually rising to become chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) in 1979. Under Gray’s watch, the commercial leasing business grew rapidly, a new property management division was created and the company successfully expanded land development services, particularly in Toronto’s downtown commercial district. Under his leadership in 1984, the firm merged with Royal Trust to form what we know today as Royal LePage. By his retirement in 1994, the firm had 12,000 agents and was the largest real estate brokerage business in the country.

“Gordon was a transformative leader whose vision and drive helped Royal LePage achieve new levels of success, particularly during the heady period of rapid economic growth in the post-recessionary period of the 1980’s. His forward-thinking leadership kept the firm one step ahead of the competition,” said Phil Soper, President and CEO, Royal LePage. “We are grateful for his contributions, which continue to inspire us today.”

September 6, 2013, past presidents joined Phil Soper at a luncheon to commemorate Royal LePage’s 100th anniversary. Seated, left to right: George Cormack and Gordon Gray. Standing, left to right: Colum Bastable, Simon Dean, William Dimma, Phil Soper.

Upon retirement, Gordon Gray continued to have an impact on the Canadian business landscape. He contributed as a board member to the success of a number of well-known companies, including Abitibi, Consumers’ Gas, Rogers Communications and Rio Algom.

His philanthropic efforts included establishing the Gray Animal Welfare Foundation and supporting scientific research at Queen’s University, funding which aided Dr. Art McDonald’s Nobel Prize-winning work.

Gordon Gray was recognized with the Order of Ontario in 2009 and the Order of Canada in 2018. In 2002, Gray was honoured with the Rex award for Real Estate Excellence for Lifetime Achievement by the National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP), and in 2020, he was inducted into the Canadian Business Hall of Fame. 

He is remembered fondly by the Royal LePage community. At the age of 96, Gordon Gray passed away on May 19th, 2024.