The power and potential of planned giving: The story behind the Harold Davenport Bursary


Legacy gifts become timeless reminders of the power of giving.

Posted 2020-03-13
Leaving an estate gift to UBC, or specifically to the UBC Sauder School of Business can be a powerful opportunity to support students along with advancing teaching and research efforts. Endowment gifts create a strong legacy for future generations. Case in point is the estate gift of John McIntryre Stoddart through which he endowed the Harold Davenport Bursary Fund in honour of his brother-in-law.

The endowment generously established by the late Mr. Stoddart through his will is enabling students today to pursue their education and follow their aspirations. His gift now generates an average of $25,000 annually in support of one or more bursaries offered to deserving undergraduate or graduate students enrolled in courses related to the economics of transportation offered at UBC Sauder and the Faculty of Applied Science (Civil Engineering or the School of Community and Regional Planning).


Who was John Stoddart and why did he create the Harold Davenport Bursary fund?

John Stoddart was a bridge builder in both his work and personal life. He was always drawn to transportation, business and forging connections. Born in Elora, Ontario in 1912, the youngest of five siblings, he grew up in Saskatchewan and attended the University of Manitoba. He served as a Naval Sub-Lieutenant during the Second World War and then pursued a varied professional career. For 20 years before retiring he was the Western Canadian Branch director for Acrow Company responsible for the distribution and assembly of Bailey bridges - a type of portable, pre-fabricated, truss bridge. However, his greatest satisfaction was how his growing multi-generational family maintained strong bonds with each other even though scattered from coast to coast. To them, he emphasized an appreciation of forbearers who helped build Canada, a country his family are privileged to live in and in which he believed deeply. Above all else he was proud to be a Canadian.


Harold Davenport: an admired friend, a pilot and a source of inspiration to Stoddart


Late donor John Stoddart was deeply inspired by his friend Harold’s lifelong love of flying.

It was perhaps that appreciation for nation building that led to John Stoddart’s admiration for his brother-in-law Harold Davenport, who was among the earliest fliers in the coastal region of British Columbia. Stoddart admired his brother-in-law’s lifelong dedication to aviation and adventurous spirit so much that when he passed away on May 4, 2001, he generously left a legacy to UBC through the Harold Davenport Bursary which will honour his brother-in-law and provide much needed support to students in perpetuity. UBC Sauder is thankful for his grace and generosity which also illustrates the enduring value of planned giving.

More information on making an estate gift to UBC can be found at:


Though UBC was provided with biographical information on John Stoddart and Harold Davenport when the endowment was established, unfortunately no photos were provided.