The reputation and expertise of our people are the critical strengths we put to work for you. At Counsel, there is no “bait and switch”; our Principals are intimately involved in all the aspects of client work.
Donald Cousens is one of the Greater Toronto Area’s most distinguished community leaders. He has served a long and remarkable career in both the public service and business.
Don brings to clients an unsurpassed knowledge of local and regional politics in the GTA and across Ontario. He works with land developers, technology companies, universities and hospitals to help strategically manage growth and shape coordinated municipal and provincial policies.
In energy policy, Don draws on a wealth of experience including his municipal role driving the creation of the Markham District Energy Centre and recent advisory work for the Ontario Power Authority.
Don served as Mayor of the Town of Markham from 1994 to 2006, during a period of unprecedented growth making him one of Canada’s most successful municipal leaders. For his extraordinary leadership, he has been honoured as one of the only living Ontarians with a highway named after him.
More recently, Donald spearheaded the Character Movement in North York-Markham school which is centered on reviving the fundamental values that society is based upon such as integrity and honesty.
Prior to entering Municipal Politics, Don served as MPP (Progressive Conservative) for York Centre (1981-87) and Markham (1987-94). Among his roles in government he was Minister of Correctional Services, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Citizenship and Culture and Deputy Speaker of the Legislature.
In addition to his extensive public sector experience, Don has worked in the private sector for close to three decades Don has also served on the Board of Directors of the Centre for Advanced Manufacturing and the Toronto Research Institute.
Don contributes to many charitable organizations. He founded the Don Cousens Charitable Foundation and is the past Chair of World Vision Canada. Don has also given his time as Director and Chair of the Markham YMCA Fundraising Committee, Founding Director of York Region Children’s Services, Director of the York Region Mental Health Association and National Chair of the Canadian Mental Health Initiative.
Don holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Queen’s University and a Master of Divinity from Knox College at the University of Toronto.