In Memoriam: Allan Johnston


The staff and board of directors of RECO are mourning the loss of Allan Johnston, RECO’s former Registrar, who died July 16, 2016 after a short illness. He was 73.

The soft-spoken Johnston was RECO’s Registrar for 10 years before his retirement in 2012. A man of great personal integrity, he was instrumental in raising the level of professionalism in the Canadian real estate industry.

Born in Aberdeen Scotland, Johnston was a pilot in the British Air Force before immigrating to Canada. His career in real estate began in Halifax, first as a salesperson, then as executive officer of the Halifax Dartmouth Real Estate Board.

This paved the way for his role as general manager with the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB). It was during his time at TREB that he became involved in two of RECO’s task forces during 1997 and 1998, assisting with the development of the RECO Code of Ethics and the establishment of RECO’s Complaints, Compliance and Discipline process.

Allan joined RECO in August of 1998 and became Registrar in 2002. During his time as RECO Registrar, Johnston became involved in initiatives that would define how the industry operates today. He was a key participant in the development of the Real Estate Business Brokers’ Act, 2002, (REBBA 2002), its regulations and RECO’s Guide to REBBA 2002. In an interview upon his retirement in 2012, he ranked those achievements as among his proudest.

“I think it was a defining moment for RECO and we became a true Delegated Administrative Authority. We had set high standards and we continued to build on that.”

Prior to his involvement in real estate, he held a number of management and executive positions in other industries in Canada after serving for 15 years in the Royal Air Force.

RECO CEO Kate Murray said Allan was instrumental in building a strong framework for REBBA 2002 and the code of ethics in particular and shepherding the reform of the complaint and discipline processes brought in with REBBA 2002, which continue to serve Ontarians well.

Joseph Richer, RECO’s current Registrar, said Allan’s insightful leadership, passion for real estate and dedication to Ontario’s consumers will be his legacy. His foresight to undertake an extensive review of real estate education has formed the foundation on which new education programming will be built and serve generations of aspiring professionals.

“He was the consummate professional in every dealing I ever had with him as a fellow regulator, always a strong consumer advocate.”

We extend our sincere condolences to Allan`s wife Linda and his family.

He will be missed.

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