The other day TheRecord, a Kitchener-Waterloo news publication, ran a remarkable story about how RIM quietly installed a small plaque dedicated to Dr. Ernest Davison in their Boardroom. Now who is Ernest Davison you might ask? As the National Research Council representative in Waterloo, he was instrumental in helping local companies secure grants under the Industrial Research Assistant Program, including RIM. At a time when RIM was barely getting by, Mr. Davison was there to help. He urged Mike Lazaridis to apply for and receive that research grant for surface mount technology (SMT), a new way to construct electronic circuits, which led to RIM reaching an annual revenue of $1 million in 1990.
Who knows what path RIM would have taken without the groundwork this inventor and engineer helped lay? His vast knowledge of technology coupled with his unwavering loyalty made him a powerful resource for tech companies seeking to grow. This is a generous gesture and shows just how much of an unsung hero Mr. Davison was behind the scenes. His friend, Newt Gingerich said it best: "He's one of the reasons Waterloo Region is what it is today." I couldn't agree more with that statement.
Ernest Davinson's story is really an interesting one, and you can check it out at the link below.