SEDRA Tribute to Jaye Robinson

Shown in the photo above, from left to right, are SEDRA’s Heritage Committee chair Sharon Mourer, Co-President John Hiddema, Councillor Robinson, Past President Andy Gort, and Co-President Jane Auster

It is with great sadness that we mark the passing of Jaye Robinson, City Councillor for Don Valley West.

We send our condolences to her family and friends, and wish them strength at this time.

We would like to share a few memories of Jaye from SEDRA board members.

As a SEDRA advisor to BARA (Broadway Avenue Resident Association) at their mediation with the City and a developer over a proposal on Broadway Avenue, I was able to witness Jaye’s commitment as a Councillor up close. She was advised by BARA that they were excluded from the settlement agreement for this project between the City and the developer. Knowing the settlement will need Council approval, Jaye tabled the resident association’s concerns as required conditions for Council approval. Among a number of community benefits resulting from Jaye’s political craft will be the establishment of a new parkette on Broadway that will help buffer the neighbourhood from this project. – Jeff Latto, Tall and Midrise Chair

My experience with Jaye was that you had to “earn” her support, but if you did then she would go to great length to support you. “Earn” meant understanding the topic and the background, being pro-active, willing to put in time and effort of your own – Andy Gort, Past President

If there were one word I’d use to describe Jaye, it would be “tough.” Tough when it came to advocating on behalf of the community with developers who were sometimes hoping for “softer” treatment from the councillor’s office. In one case in particular, the councillor refused to grant a demolition permit until the developer came up with an alternative and more palatable plan for the closure of part of Bayview. The developer actually came to us, the RA, to plead their case with the councillor. With the potential loss of the popular local Valumart store, Jaye practically demanded that the developer plan for a grocery store to return to this location to prevent the loss of a moderately-priced food retailer in the area. She was a person of great principle, always on the side of the residents she represented – Jane Auster, Co-President

Jaye was always matter of fact in conversations and had a strong sense of what was important to people. Her sense of context and history – the big picture – was always close to mind, and came out in discussions we had with Jaye. Her love for the people and the city of Toronto came through in her work. Her legacy will live on, from her time as a Toronto civil servant on events such as Summerlicious, Winterlicious and Nuit Blanche. When she was TTC Chair, Jaye talked with us about how proud she was to be able to expand the TTC’s electric bus fleet. Jaye was ambitious, accomplished, and devoted to her community and her city – John Hiddema, Co-President

We at SEDRA will miss Jaye.

Her obituary is posted at

There was a beautiful Celebration of Life for Jaye on Thursday May 30 at Yorkminster Park Baptist Church.

As requested in Jaye’s obituary, please consider a donation to the Toronto Region Conservation Authority ( in Jaye’s name and help keep Toronto green.