|Preceded by||Elmer Brandon|
|Succeeded by||John MacBeth|
Henry Leslie Rowntree
June 2, 1914
|Died||May 17, 1975 (aged 60)|
Honey Harbour, Ontario
|Political party||Progressive Conservative|
|Branch/service||Royal Canadian Navy|
|Years of service||1942–45|
|Battles/wars||Battle of the Atlantic|
Henry Leslie Rowntree (June 2, 1914 – May 17, 1975) was a politician in Ontario, Canada. He was a Progressive Conservative member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario from 1956 to 1971. He represented the riding of York West. He served as a cabinet minister in the governments of Leslie Frost and John Robarts.
Rowntree was born in Toronto, Ontario. He attended Runnymede Public School and Humberside Collegiate Institute. He graduated from University of Toronto and Osgoode Hall Law School. During his student days he worked summers on ships on the Great Lakes and spent a time as purser on the SS Noronic. In 1940, he enlisted in the Royal Canadian Navy and became a Lieutenant-Commander in the Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve. After the war he was called to the bar and eventually started his own law firm specializing in maritime law.
Rowntree was elected in a by-election in 1956 to replace Elmer Brandon who had died while serving in office. He defeated CCF candidate Lynn Williams by 4,993 votes. He was re-elected in 1959, 1963 and 1967.
He was appointed to cabinet in 1960 as the Minister of Transport. He replaced John Yaremko who resigned due to an illness. He was named Minister of Labour in 1962 in a large cabinet shuffle. In 1966, he was appointed to the new position of Minister of Financial and Commercial Affairs.
In 1967, he announced major changes to the Ontario Securities Commission. The changes gave the OSC greater powers to investigate and audit financial corporations. The changes were brought about partly as a result of the collapse of Prudential Finance Corporation a year earlier.
In February 1969, during a session in the assembly, Rowntree rose to speak about an NDP opposition member's position on water pollution. After a saying a few words, opposition member Morton Shulman shouted "The minister is drunk!" The speaker ended the debate and Rowntree said little more. It was privately known that Rowntree was a heavy drinker but the incident, which was reported in the press, led to his removal from cabinet a year later and he retired from the legislature.
|Ontario provincial government of John Robarts|
|Ontario provincial government of Leslie Frost|
|Cabinet posts (3)|
|New position||Minister of Financial and Commercial Affairs
|Bill Warrender||Minister of Labour
|John Yaremko||Minister of Transport
In 1970, he was appointed as Chairman of the Centennial Centre of Science and Technology. He died at Honey Harbour, Ontario in 1975 at the age of 60. His wife Cynthia died a year earlier in 1974.
- "Three one time sailors seek port in York West". Toronto Daily Star. September 20, 1963. p. 47.
- "PC Winner Of By-Election In York West". The Globe and Mail. October 19, 1956. p. 1.
- "MPP for York West, W. Elmer Brandon Dies". The Globe and Mail. July 3, 1956. p. 5.
- Canadian Press (June 12, 1959). "Complete Results of Ontario Voting by Constituencies". The Ottawa Citizen. Ottawa. p. 26.
- Canadian Press (September 26, 1963). "78 in Tory Blue Wave -- 23 Is All Grits Saved". The Windsor Star. Windsor, Ontario. p. 25.
- Canadian Press (October 18, 1967). "Tories win, but..." The Windsor Star. Windsor, Ontario. p. B2.
- "Rowntree in Frost cabinet". Toronto Daily Star. November 21, 1960. p. 1.
- "Cabinet shuffle stresses youth; Cass appointed Attorney-General". The Globe and Mail. October 26, 1962. p. 1.
- "Five added to Cabinet by Robarts". The Globe and Mail. November 25, 1966. p. 1.
- "Leslie Rowntree: Lawyer held 3 portfolios in Ontario", The Globe and Mail, May 19, 1975, pg. 2
- "Ontario's Securities Act fully effective on May 1". The Globe and Mail. January 24, 1967. p. B1.
- "Rowntree called drunk by Shulman". The Globe and Mail. February 8, 1969. p. 1.
- Stevens, Geoffrey (February 5, 1970). "A. B. R. Lawrence likely successor: Rowntree leaves Robarts Cabinet today". The Globe and Mail. p. 1.
- Dowd, Eric (November 8, 1995). "Politicians' drinking problems rarely told". The Kitchener Record. p. A7.
- Stevens, Geoffrey (February 6, 1970). "Rowntree to head Science Centre board". The Globe and Mail. p. 4.
- "Obituary". The Globe and Mail. March 11, 1974. p. 36.