Jim Lawson heads 2021 class named for induction into Burlington Sports Hall of Fame

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BURLINGTON, ONT. — Woodbine CEO Jim Lawson was named for induction into the Burlington Sports Hall of Fame on Tuesday.

The 62-year-old Hamilton native will formally be inducted as part of the 2021 class Oct. 26.

Lawson attended Aldershot High School in Burlington, Ont., before securing a hockey scholarship at Brown University. He was drafted by the NHL's Montreal Canadiens in 1978 and played two seasons with the AHL's Nova Scotia Voyageurs before retiring to pursue a law career.

Lawson was chairman of the CFL’s board of governors from 2013-19, twice serving as interim commissioner. Upon receiving the Commissioner's Award for significant contribution to Canadian football, Lawson stepped down from his CFL post to concentrate full-time on his duties as CEO of Woodbine Entertainment Group, Canada’s largest racetrack operator.

Lawson's father, Mel, played quarterback for the 1943 Grey Cup-winning Hamilton Flying Wildcats. His grandfather, Charles, owned the Hamilton Wildcats in the 1940s and was a key figure in the merging of the Wildcats and Hamilton Tigers to become the Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 1950.

Mel Lawson was also inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2010. He passed away the following year at age 88.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 6, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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