Mandate and Responsibilities

City Council renamed the Toronto Historical Board as Heritage Toronto in Toronto Municipal Code Chapter 103, Heritage. Under the City of Toronto Act, 2006, Heritage Toronto is a city board and City Council determines its mandate and structure.

Heritage Toronto’s role is to represent the interests of the heritage community and is distinct from the heritage advice given by City staff as part of the planning process. Heritage Toronto interprets, supports and acts as an advocate to protect the City’s heritage assets, including cultural, architectural, archaeological and natural heritage.

The specific responsibilities of the Board of Directors of Heritage Toronto are as follows:

  • provide advice from a community perspective to the City, civic organizations and members of the public regarding heritage issues;
  • promote and educate the public regarding heritage issues;
  • ensure that privately donated funds received are applied to the specific purpose designated by the donor;
  • establish and manage publicity and public programs, including award programs, respecting city-wide heritage issues, and to otherwise promote public awareness of the City’s heritage;
  • serve as a liaison with the heritage community and promote public awareness of the City’s heritage resources;
  • serve as a focal point for volunteer sector groups;
  • assist and advise in the development of the Heritage Master Plan; and
  • carry out such other duties relating to the City’s history and development as Council may assign.

Board Size and Composition

The Board of Directors consists of 29 members and is composed of:

  • the Mayor or a designate appointed by the Mayor;
  • 3 Council Members;
  • 25 citizen members composed of:
    • 15 citizen members (at-large);
    • 8 citizen members, 2 nominated by each Community Council;
    • 1 citizen member nominated by the Aboriginal community; and
    • 1 citizen member nominated by the Toronto Historical Association.

Chair and Vice-Chair

The Board of Directors elects the Chair and Vice-Chair of the Board from amongst its members.

Eligibility Requirements

Citizens are eligible for appointment to the Board of Directors, and eligible to remain on the Board after being appointed, if they satisfy the eligibility requirements for appointment as set out in the City’s Public Appointments Policy.


Citizen members of the Board of Directors should collectively demonstrate a range of qualifications including:

  • broad interest in and knowledge of cultural and/or environmental and/or built heritage preservation, and a good understanding of current heritage issues;
  • expertise in good governance practices, including legal and accounting expertise;
  • an understanding of marketing, advertising and public relations;
  • expertise in public programming from experience in education, tourism, planning or museum management;
  • expertise in fund development; and
  • expertise in history.

Appointments Process – Citizen Members

Citizen members of the Board (citizen members at-large) are recruited through an advertised recruitment process.The appointments process is conducted according to the policies and procedures in the City’s Public Appointments Policy.The Board appoints a Heritage Toronto Nominating Panel to support the process.

Appointments Process – Community Council Nominees

Each of the 4 Community Councils may extend an invitation to serve on the Heritage Toronto Board of Directors to 2 people who are either serving on one of the City’s museum advisory board or preservation panels or the Toronto Preservation Board, or may otherwise select a citizen active in the heritage community.

Appointments Process – Aboriginal Community Nominee

The Heritage Toronto Nominating Panel arranges for the nomination of 1 nominee from the Aboriginal community by the Aboriginal community.

Appointments Process – Toronto Historical Association Nominee

The Heritage Toronto Nominating Panel arranges for the nomination of 1 nominee by the Toronto Historical Association.


The Board meets at least 6 times a year and at any time at the request of a majority of the Members of the Board or at the call of the Chair. Board meetings are open to the public, except for meetings or parts of meetings where a subject matter is being considered that is set out in section 190 of the City of Toronto Act, 2006.


No remuneration is paid to Board members.