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Portrait of Michael McCain

Michael McCain

A businessman, philanthropist and highly respected leader, Michael McCain has made a visionary gift to the field of urology in Canada.

In 2019, with a gift of $10 million, philanthropist Michael McCain enabled the University of Toronto and Princess Margaret Cancer Centre to launch the McCain Centre for Urological Innovation and Education. The generosity of Michael McCain will help researchers at U of T and Princess Margaret harness the latest scientific and technological advances in the field of urology, educate the next generation of urological surgeon scientists, and expand an already world-class tissue biobank to significantly improve patient care.

Known for his values-based leadership style, Michael McCain has devoted his career to the food industry. Starting at McCain Foods in the late 1970s, he held a variety of roles, including President and Chief Executive Officer of McCain Foods USA. He joined Maple Leaf Foods as President and Chief Operating Officer in 1995 and is currently President and Chief Executive Officer of the company. McCain has been instrumental in transforming Maple Leaf Foods into Canada’s leading food processor and exporter.

McCain has also been a longtime supporter of health-care and educational institutions and initiatives, including serving as the current Vice-Chair of the CAMH Foundation Board. McCain became a volunteer with the CAMH Foundation in 2007, and quickly stepped up his commitment by taking on the role of Co-Chair of the Transforming Lives Capital Campaign, which raised $100 million for CAMH’s redevelopment.

He is also director of the Margaret and Wallace McCain Family Foundation—named after his parents, who have deep roots at the University of Toronto. The Margaret and Wallace McCain Family Foundation has supported the Dr. Eric Jackman Institute of Child Study, OISE and the Faculty of Medicine. Michael McCain is also a member of the Richard Ivey School of Business advisory board, a member of the MaRS Discovery District board of directors (since May 2009), and sits on the MaRS inaugural fundraising cabinet and is a past member of the board of trustees of The Hospital for Sick Children.

Born in Florenceville, New Brunswick, McCain attended Mount Allison University and received an Honours Business Administration degree from the University of Western Ontario. He also holds honorary degrees from Brock University, Carleton University and the University of Guelph. In recent years, he has received numerous awards, including the Golden Pencil Award from the Food Industry Association of Canada (2016), the Honorary Associate Award from the Conference Board of Canada (2014) and CEO of the Year (2008) from the Canadian Press.

The McCain Centre for Urological Innovation and Education at U of T will provide long-term support for trainees through U of T’s Surgeon Scientist Training Program. McCain’s gift will also help the Centre expand the Genitourinary (GU) BioBank at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre—renamed the McCain GU BioBank—into a world-leading research resource that will advance our understanding of cancers of the prostate, kidney, bladder and testes. The gift also created the McCain Professorship in Urological Innovation to explore the role of artificial intelligence in the field of urology.