(Excerpted from Medical Specialties Societies of Canada)
Edited by T.P. Morley, FRCPSC
Reproduced by permission of Associated Medical Services Incorporate/Hannah Institute for the History of Medicine, Toronto, and publisher (1991) of Canadian Medical Specialty Societies. Copies at $20.00 may be obtained from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, 74 Stanley Ottawa, Ontario, K1M 1P4.
Dermatology began to emerge as a specialty during the second half of the nineteenth century. This began at the University of Toronto and almost simultaneously at McGill. In the first quarter of the twentieth century, dermatologists appeared in several of our larger cities. While these men probably had met occasionally, the first recorded meeting took place in Ottawa in 1924. A brief mention of this occurs in the first minute book of the organization. In the handwriting of J. Fred Burgess, “Omar Wilson of Ottawa invited some dermatologists from Toronto and Montreal to come to an information clinical conference.” It was probably here, that the idea of a national society was first considered.
In May 1926, four dermatologists attended the annual meeting of the Ontario Medical Association held in London, Ontario. These four, G. Gordon Campbell of Montreal, Omar Wilson of Ottawa, E.J. Trow Sr. of Toronto and W.R. Jaffray of Hamilton Ontario, met on the 26th of May and, in the words of Dr Jaffray, “We met over a bottle of Old Parr and dreamed up the society.” While this meeting began as a social meeting it was here that the spade work was done in establishing a national society. The credit seemed to go to Omar Wilson.
Gordon Campbell, the senior present, was appointed chairman and Omar Wilson acted as secretary. It was decided to form a society called the Interurban Dermatological Society, limited to physicians whose practice was confined to dermatology, and that the meetings be held bi-annually.
Gordon Campbell was appointed president and J.F. Burgess, secretary/treasurer. The fee was set at $5.00 per annum. The energy of this group was such that the first meeting was held one month later, on 11 June 1926, in Montreal. It was a two-day affair, the first day at the Montreal General Hospital and the second at the Royal Victoria Hospital. There were eight founding members. George Gordon Campbell of Montreal, David King-Smith of Toronto, Philip Burnett of Montreal, Omar Matthew Wilson of Ottawa, Emerson James Trow Sr. of Toronto, William Reginald Jaffray of Hamilton, J. Frederick Burgess of Montreal and Hammet A. Dixon of Toronto. At this first meeting W.R. Bourne and J.L.D Mason and Barney D. Usher were elected to membership.
Many, if not all of these founding members had close friendships with the British Association of Dermatology and Syphilology. There had spent some time in the British Isles during their postgraduate studies. It was inevitable that the British learned of this new society. Dr McLeod, Secretary of the British Association, wrote a letter to Dr King-Smith dated 9 November 1926, “suggesting you have some sort of affiliation with the British Association of Dermatology and Syphilology.” He felt that if the Canadians did this, he would try to get the men in Australia and New Zealand to do likewise and in this way we would have an Imperial Dermatological Association.
King-Smith took this letter to the second meeting of the new organization, which was also held in Montreal in December 1926. Following some discussion, King-Smith was authorized to approach the British Association of Dermatologists and Syphilologists regarding an affiliation. He write to McLeod in a letter dated 14 December 1926, “A number of those interested in dermatology met in Montreal last Saturday and formed a Canadian Dermatological Association… suggested that is might be a good thing for our new society if we could in some way become associated with the British Association of Dermatologists and Syphilologists: it was received with much favour and was left in my hands to see is this could be brought about.” On receipt of this letter McLeod took the matter up with his executive and replied on 25 March 1927, “At a meeting of the executive committee of the British Association of Dermatologists and Syphilologists, it was unanimously decided to cordially invite the Canadian Dermatological Association to become affiliated with British Association of Dermatology and Syphilology, the requirements for membership being the same and each member agreeing to take the Journal at Two Guineas per annum. I take it that you would prefer to call your association Canadian Dermatological Association, affiliation to the British Association of Dermatologist and Syphilologist rather than the Canadian Branch of the British Association of Dermatologist and Syphilolgist but this is a matter for your association to decide.”
It would thus appear from this correspondence that the Interurban Dermatological Association became the Canadian Dermatological Association at the December 1927 meeting although this does not appear to be substantiated by the minutes. It is my impression from talking to many of the founders that the formal name remained the Interurban until 1928.
The third meeting of the society was held on 7 May 1927, in Toronto and at the business meeting it was moved by E.J. Trow and seconded by King-Smith that the name be changed to the British Association of Dermatologists and Syphilologists, Canadian Branch. This motion was carried and this remained the name of the association for the next twenty years. The membership lists of the Canadian branch were appended to the list of the parent association and Canadian members received the Journal of the British Association on payment of their fees.
It was decided, at this time, to change to annual meetings. At the 1928 meeting, a motion was adopted inviting Frances J. Shepherd of Montreal to be Honorary President of the Canadian Branch Association. A gracious note of acceptance was received from Dr Shepherd although there is no record that Dr Shepherd attended a meeting or that he was particularly interested in the society. This is the only time to date that an honorary president was named to our society. The meetings alternated between Toronto and Montreal and the society grew slowly. By 1938, the roster lists 26 members, 1945, the annual meeting was held in Montreal and at this meetings Burgess introduced a notice of motion to change the name of the society to the Canadian Dermatological Association, but with the proviso that the affiliation with the British should be continued. It was felt that the old name was awkward and ambiguous and caused considerable confusion. On 13 June 1946 the last meeting of the British Association of Dermatology and Syphilology, Canadian Branch was held in Jasper, Alberta. It is of interest that this was the only meeting of that society that was held outside of Ontario or Quebec. Burgess’s motion was seconded by E.J. Trow and passed unanimously and the Canadian Dermatological Association became a fait accompli. It is of passing interest that it was E.J. Trow who originally moved that the name be changed to the British Association and that he seconded the motion to change it back: he was in tune with the times.
An information meeting was held in Cleveland, Ohio, on 11 December 1946, at the time of the American Academy of Dermatology meeting. A constitution and a set of bylaws were approved and the next year saw the first meeting of the Canadian Dermatological Association, held in Winnipeg. Eight members and one guest were present at this meeting.
The Association grew slowly but by 1949 there was a marked increase in the number of dermatologists in Canada as a result of the return of veterans and graduation from training programs in Canada and United States.
George Suter Williamson was elected president in 1949 and Sylvestor E. Grimes secretary. Dr Williamson revitalized the association. He proposed that the secretary/treasurer be elected for a five year term, to give some continuity, and he expanded the meeting to three days. He was elected for a second consecutive term, the only time this has happened in our association. The constitution was revised by A.R. Birth and George E. Brock of Winnipeg and was published in 1953.
It had always been the policy to hold meetings of the CDA in the general vicinity of the Annual meeting of the Canadian Medical Association, but not at exactly the same time. This policy more or less continues to the present time. There have been two “off shore” meetings, in Mexico City (1970) in association with one of the national dermatological associations of Mexico, and in Dublin with the Irish Dermatological Association (1976). The programme and arrangements are left to the local society under the direction of the president, with little or no interference from the association at large.
This has given each meeting a distinctive local flavour and has introduced many innovations, some of which have been continued, for example the annual clinical pathological conference. The constitution allows for the appointment of a regional secretary who worked with the president and handles most of the details. The president and the president-elect therefore have always been chosen from the area where the next meeting will take place. This policy continued until a new constitution was adopted in 1985.
The Association expanded in size and activity and many amendments to the constitution were made from time to time. It thus became necessary to rewrite the constitution in the late fifties. This was done by A.R. Birth and R.R. Forsey. In the early days there is no doubt that the Association was dominated by dedicate few.
It is to these men that we owe our survival when the association was young. Nevertheless, this led to a good deal of inbreeding and one individual could hold several offices and head several important committees. When Gibson E. Craig served his term as secretary he saw that this policy has a stifling effect on the membership at large. He recommended that the constitution be changed once again. As a result of this, he and R.R. Forsey revised the constitution and made several sweeping changes. No officer or chairman of a committee could hold office for more than one successive term of five years. The board of directors, which had been made up of the senior members from the major university areas, was increased in size and the directors were elected from the membership at large for a three-year term, alternating in such a fashion to ensure continuity. This was a wise move and broadened the base of the association allowing many young people to become active and involved in its affairs. This constitution remained in effect until 1985 when a committee headed by the secretary, Alastair McLeod, proposed further changes including a change of name to the Association to the Canadian Dermatology Association. The other major changes in the new constitution placed the conduct of the meeting in the hands of the vice-president and his regional secretary, leaving the president free to devote his time to the running of the Association. This also allowed for the election to the presidency of men and women on their merit, regardless of where the meeting was to be held.
There has been a gradual growth in membership. In 1947, there were 41 members and in 1956 there were 90 members. Today (1990) there are 12 honorary members, 33 senior members, 415 fellows, 10 associate members, 6 corresponding members, and 78 resident members for a total membership of 554. In the early days there were some concerns that the American dermatologists, many of whom like to visit Canada, might join our society in such numbers that they would dominate the association. While we welcome non-Canadian members, their numbers are limited to 10% of the total Canadian membership. At the present time there are 49 non-Canadians, many of whom attend regularly and contribute much to our meetings. There was concern about honorary membership. In the early days a member who had visited a dermatologist in a foreign country would return and nominate his host for honorary membership at the next meeting. In order to stop this practice without giving offence, an amendment was passed stating that to be eligible for honorary membership, a member must be a leader in his own country and must have made a significant contribution to Canadian Dermatology. This amendment has served us well. At the present time, there are 12 honorary members and all have taken part at our meetings and many are active contributors year after year.
Although female members were admitted by 1952, the formal dinners were strictly stag affairs. They were often gastronomical feasts. At the 1951 dinner in Quebec City, at Cercle Université, the menu was the same as that which had been served to the King and Queen when they visited that city. Periodically the question of whether ladies should be invited would come up and this was always defeated. In 1952, when Dr Usher was president, he did not take a vote but simply invited the ladies, and that has been the custom ever since.
At the 1958 meeting in Halifax, under the presidency of Dr Denis R.S. Howell, the custom of giving a gift to the members and their wives who attended was started. Often the gift has been something prepared by local artists or craftsmen. When Dr Garbe was president in 1963 a formal crest was chosen from designs submitted by art students in Toronto. The second innovation was the presentation of a gold pin bearing the crest to the past presidents.
In 1960, Gibson E. Craig, the secretary/treasurer, with the president A.D. Duncan, established the Award of Merit. The award, a suitably engraved paperweight, was first presented to Dr Lemuel P. Ereaux at the meeting in Calgary in 1960. The second recipient, two years later, was George S. Williamson. For twenty years, there were no awards but the custom was revived by Jack Brown in 1982. He asked Dr Forsey to look into this and it was decided to change the award from a paperweight to a gold signet ring. The ring bears the crest of the association. Inside the ring the name of the recipient is engraved with the year of presentation. Along with the ring there is a plaque on which is inscribed:
THE AWARD OF MERIT OF THE CANADIAN DERMATOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION
Presented to ________________________________
For His Outstanding Contribution to the Association and to Canadian Dermatology
Subsequent recipients of the award have been A.R. Birth (1982), R.R. Forsey (1983) and Robert Jackson (1989).
Dr Barney Usher, the president in 1952, introduced the idea of a research award and recommended that it carry a monetary value and that the recipient would attend the next scientific meeting at the expense of the association to give a paper. The purpose of the award was to stimulate dermatological research among young physicians. Following Dr Usher’s death the name of the award was changed to the Barney Usher Research Award, and continues to this day.
In 1950 R.R. Forsey was appointed chairman of a committee to look into costs and ways and means of starting a journal. On studying the matter the committee soon saw that this was too ambitious a project for an association of the size of ours. The committee recommended that no further action be taken at that time. One of the difficulties, then as now, was to attract high calibre papers for publication.
Nevertheless, with a growing membership spread across four thousand miles, there was a need for some form of communication. In 1975, the CDA established a Bulletin under the editorship of Donald Rosenthal of Hamilton. He was succeeded by Alan Dodd of Vancouver. The publishing of the Bulletin was taken over by Mr Louis Vogel who bore all the expenses without advertisements to offset them. The idea at the time was that it would begin as a newsletter with some scientific content, but that it would gradually evolve into a journal. Every member of the Canadian Dermatological Association received copies of the Bulletin. The Bulletin met with great success as a form of communication, and its scientific content slowly increased. In 1985, it became the Canadian Dermatological Association Journal. Since 1988, William Stewart as editor has continued the transformation of the Bulletin to a true scientific journal.
The Canadian Dermatological Association Journal is the only journal authorized by the Association. A private journal called the Journal of Canadian Dermatology causes some confusion, and although its editor and editorial boards as members of the Canadian Dermatological Association it has not direct connection with the Association.
Forsey R R Hisotry of the Canadian Dermatological Association. Arch. Derm. 91:486-492, 1965
Birth A R The Canadian Dermatological Association: first 50 years. Dermatology 16:289-295, 1977.
|Officer of the Dermatology Associations *|
|Interurban Dermatological Society|
|1926 JUN||Gordon G. Campbell||J.F. Burgess|
|1926 DEC||Gordon G. Campbell||J.F. Burgess|
|1927 JUN||David King-Smith||Emerson J. Trow|
|British Association of Dermatology and Syphilology|
|1928||Omar M. Wilson||-|
|1929||David King-Smith||Emerson J. Trow|
|1930||Gustave Archambault||Alberic Marin|
|1931||Emerson J. TRow||Hamnet A. Dixon|
|1932||Philip Burnett||Lemuel P. Ereaux|
|1933||J. Frederick Burgess||Barney Usher|
|1934||Alberic Marin||Antonio Sabetta|
|1935||W. Reginald Jaffrey||Basil Bowman|
|1936||Hamnet A. Dixon||Norman M. Wrong|
|1937||James J. McGovern||Frederick L. Boulais|
|1939||Harold Orr||Donald S Mitchell|
|1941||Lemuel P Ereaux||Frank E. Cormia|
|1942||Barney Usher||Fred Kalz|
|1943||Barney Usher||Fred Kalz|
|1944||Barney Usher||Fred Kalz|
|1945||Georges S. Williamson||Sylvester R. Grimes|
|1946||D.E.H. Cleveland||Donald H. Williams|
|The Canadian Dermatological Association|
|1947||A.M. Davidson||G. Brock|
|1948||E.J. Trow||N. Wrong|
|1949||G.S. Williamson||S.E. Grimes|
|1950||G.S. Williamson||S.E. Grimes|
|1951||E. Gaumond||S.E. Grimes|
|1952||B. Usher||S.E. Grimes|
|1953||G. Brock||A.R. Birt|
|1954||D.E.H. Cleveland||A.R. Birt|
The Canadian Inter-urban (Toronto, Montréal, Ottawa, Hamilton) Dermatological Association was formed on May 26, 1926. In May 1927, the association became the Canadian Branch of the British Association of Dermatology and Syphilology. In 1936, it was accepted as the Section on Dermatology of the Canadian Medical Association. In 1946, it assumed the proper and distinctive title of the Canadian Dermatological Association (CDA), subsequently amended to Canadian Dermatology Association in 1987.
At the 26th meeting of the CDA (May 14-18, 1972, Montréal), it was agreed that annual meetings should be back-dated to the date of the first dermatological meeting in 1926, thereby making the 1973 meeting the “48th Annual Meeting of the CDA.” Further annual meetings (annual conference as of 2001) were numbered in sequence from there on.
|Inter-urban Dermatological Society|
|1926||June 11 – 12||Montreal General Hospital
Royal Victoria Hospital
|1927||May 7||Toronto General Hospital||Toronto ON|
British Association of Dermatology & Syphilology (Canadian Branch)
|1928||March 31||Toronto General Hospital||Toronto ON|
|1929||June 20||Hôpital Notre-Dame||Montréal QC|
|1930||June 21||Montreal General Hospital
Royal Victoria Hospital
|1931||June 16||Toronto General Hospital||Toronto ON|
|1932||June 24||Toronto General Hospital||Toronto ON|
|1933||May 27||Montreal General Hospital||Montréal QC|
|1934||June 1||Hamilton General Hospital||Hamilton ON|
|1935||May 11||Royal Victoria Hospital||Montréal QC|
|1936||May 9||Toronto General Hospital||Toronto ON|
|1937||June 23 – 24||(with CMA)||Ottawa ON|
|1939||June 21 – 22||(with CMA)||Montréal QC|
|1940||June 20 – 21||(with CMA)||Toronto ON|
|1941||June 21||Ottawa Civic Hospital||Ottawa ON|
|1942||June 17, 19||(with CMA)||Jasper AB|
|1943||May 29||Hôpital Hôtel-Dieu||Montréal QC|
|1944||May 23||Toronto General Hospital (with CMA)||Toronto ON|
|1945||June 13||Royal Victoria Hospital||Montréal QC|
|1946||June 13||Banff Springs Hotel||Banff AB|
|2.0 *Meetings between 1926 and 1931 were biennial. The summer meeting has been chosen as the annual meeting.|
|Canadian Dermatological Association|
|3.0 1st||1947||June 24||Deer Lodge Hospital||Winnipeg MB|
|4.0 2nd||1948||June 23 – 24||Royal York Hotel
Toronto General Hospital
|5.0 3rd||1949||June 13 – 14||Fort Gary Hotel
Deer Lodge Hospital
|4th||1950||June 9 – 10||Chateau Frontenac
|5th||1951||June 18 – 20||Seigniory Club
|6th||1952||June 9 – 11||Seigniory Club
Royal Victoria Hospital
|7th||1953||June 14, 16 – 17||Devil’s Gap Lodge
Deer Lodge Hospital
|8th||1954||June 13 – 16||Harrison Hot Springs Hotel
|Harrison Hot Springs BC
|9th||1955||June 23 – 25||Sheraton Brock Hotel
Toronto General Hospital
|Niagara Falls ON
|10th||1956||June 14 – 16||Château-du-Lac
|6.0 Lac Beauport QC
|11th||1957||May 16 – 18||Hotel London
|12th||1958||June 19 – 21||Lord Nelson Hotel
Victoria General Hospital
|13th||1959||June 4 – 6||The Queen Elizabeth Hotel
Royal Victoria Hospital
|14th||1960||June 30 – July 2||Banff Springs Hotel||Banff AB|
|15th||1961||June 15 – 17||Seigniory Club
Ottawa General Hospital
|16th||1962||June 17 – 21||Minaki Lodge
Winnipeg Children’s Hospital
|17th||1963||June 12 – 15||Inn on the Park
St Michael’s Hospital
|18th||1964||June 23 – 27||Bayshore Inn
|19th||1965||June 15 – 18||Hôtel L’Estérel
Montreal General Hospital
|Ste Marguerite QC
|20th||1966||June 28 – July 2||Jasper Park Lodge||Jasper AB|
|21st||1967||June 30 – July 4||Manoir Saint Castin
Hôtel Dieu Hospital
|Lac Beauport QC
|22nd||1968||July 2 – 6||Bayshore Inn
|23rd||1969||June 27 – July 1||Inn on the Park
Toronto Western Hospital
|Don Mills ON
|24th||1970||March 6 – 11||Joint meeting with the Mexican Academy of Dermatology
|Mexico City, Mexico|
|25th||1971||July 9 – 13||Holiday Inn||St John’s NL|
|26th||1972||May 14 – 18||Hôtel Bonaventure
St Mary’s Hospital
|48th||1973||June 26 – 30||Bayshore Inn||Vancouver BC|
|49th||1974||June 30 – July 4||Chateau Laurier Hotel||Ottawa ON|
|50th||1975||July 2 – 6||Banff Springs Hotel||Banff AB|
|51st||1976||April 30 – May 4||Joint meeting with the Irish Dermatological Society
St Vincent’s Hospital
|52nd||1977||June 12 – 16||Château Champlain Hotel
Hôtel Dieu Hospital
|53rd||1978||June 19 – 23||Winnipeg Inn
Basic Medical Science Building
|54th||1979||June 24 – 28||Hotel Toronto||Toronto ON|
|55th||1980||June 26 – 30||Bayshore Inn||Vancouver BC|
|56th||1981||June 28 – July 2||Château Halifax||Halifax NS|
|57th||1982||July 2 – 6||Westin Hotel||Edmonton AB|
|58th||1983||June 29 – July 3||Château Laurier Hotel||Ottawa ON|
|59th||1984||June 22 – 26||Château Frontenac Hotel||Québec QC|
|60th||1985||June 26 – 30||Holiday Inn (City Centre)||London ON|
|61th||1986||June 25 – 29||Hyatt Regency Hotel||Vancouver BC|
|Canadian Dermatology Association|
|62nd||1987||June 19 – 23||Le Grand Hotel||Montréal, QC|
|63rd||1988||June 22 – 26||Banff Springs Hotel||Banff, AB|
|64th||1989||June 28 – July 2||Halifax Sheraton Hotel||Halifax NS|
|65th||1990||May 29 – June 2||Mount MacIntyre Recreation Centre||Whitehorse YK|
|66th||1991||June 26 – 30||Queen’s Landing Inn||Niagara-on-the-Lake ON|
|67th||1992||June 24 – 28||Empress Hotel||Victoria BC|
|68th||1993||July 7 – 10||Joint meeting with the British Association of Dermatologists||Oxford, England|
|69th||1994||June 22 – 26||Lowes Hotel||Québec QC|
|70th||1995||June 28 – July 2||Château Whistler||Whistler BC|
|71st||1996||July 3 – 7||Rimrock Resort Hotel||Calgary-Banff AB|
|72nd||1997||July 2 – 6||Delta Hotel||St. John’s NL|
|73rd||1998||June 30 – July 4||Crowne Plaza Hotel||Toronto ON|
|74th||1999||June 30 – July 4||Pan Pacific Hotel||Vancouver BC|
|75th||2000||June 28 – July 2||Omni Hotel||Montréal QC|
|76th||2001||June 27 – July 1||The Westin Nova Scotian||Halifax NS|
|77th||2002||June 29 – 30||Le Meridien Étoile Hôtel||Paris, France|
|78th||2003||June 28 – July 2||Château Laurier||Ottawa ON|
|79th||2004||June 30 – July 4||Fairmont Empress Victoria||Victoria BC|
|80th||2005||June 28 – July 3||Fairmont Château Frontenac||Québec QC|
|81st||2006||June 27 – July 2||Fort Garry Hotel||Winnipeg MB|
|82nd||2007||June 29 – July 4||Fairmont Royal York||Toronto, ON|
|83rd||2008||June 27 – July 2||Fairmont Queen Elizabeth||Montreal, QC|
|84th||2009||July 1 – 5||Fairmont Hotel Vancouver||Vancouver, BC|
|85th||2010||Juny 30 – July 4||Delta St. John’s Hotel||St. John’s, NL|
|86th||2011||Jun 22 – 26||Shaw Conference Centre||Edmonton, AB|