Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies sociology Professor Emeritus Gordon Darroch, born in Calgary in 1940, died peacefully in the company of his family at Kensington Hospice in Toronto on Aug. 3.
In 1967, Prof. Darroch accepted a faculty position in the Department of Sociology at York University, where he built a career as a social historian. He was a graduate of the University of Western Ontario and completed his master’s and doctoral degrees at Duke University.
Widely recognized for his expertise in the statistical study of census data, Prof. Darroch served as the principal investigator and team leader of the Centre for the Canadian Century Research Infrastructure Project at York University from 2002-08. Acknowledged as a pioneer in the development and dissemination of national historical micro-data, he published numerous studies of social mobility in Canada. He was the co-director of the academic journal Histoire sociale/Social History from 1988 to 2004, and the editor and prime mover behind the publication of The Dawn of Canada’s Century: Hidden Histories (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2014), which is a major collection of Canadian population studies of the early 20th century.
Prof. Darroch’s dedication to pedagogy as well as to scholarship led to two teaching awards: the Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations’ Award for Outstanding Contributions to University Teaching (1992-93) and the Ontario Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Teaching Excellence (1993-94). He also received a Fulbright Fellowship to teach at Duke University’s Canadian Studies Centre in 1991-92.