Founder & history

Geoff Pawson

Geoff Pawson

Dr. Geoff Pawson (pictured left) founded Ranch Ehrlo Society in 1966, growing the concept from a single residential unit for six troubled boys to a multi-service agency providing highly specialized programs for youth, families, and communities.

Geoff was an instrumental advocate for children and youth; he was one of the founding members of the Child Welfare League of Canada, past president of the Saskatchewan Association of Social Workers, and served on numerous committees at the municipal, provincial, national, and international levels. Geoff also co-wrote and edited the book Go Forward with Pride: A Historical Review of the Ranch Ehrlo Society.

In 2000, Geoff was named to the Order of Canada, in 2001 he received the Saskatchewan Order of Merit, in 2003 he was awarded the Family Service Canada Award, and in 2005 he received an Honourary Doctorate of Law from the University of Regina—all of these awards were in recognition of Geoff’s unwavering commitment to helping youth and their families become healthier and contributing members of society.

Geoff passed away in January 2012 after a brief battle with cancer. Despite his passing, his passion for helping young people, families, and the community continues on.