Personal Name Authority
Daniel Grafton Hill (1923-2003) was a sociologist, civil servant, human rights specialist, and Canadian Black historian.
Born in Independence Missouri, Hill grew up in the western United States. In 1948, he graduated with a B.A. from Howard University in Washington D.C.. In 1950, he came to Canada to study sociology at the University of Toronto. There, he obtained an M.A. in 1951 and a Ph.D. in 1960.
During his career as a sociologist, Hill was a researcher for the Social Planning Council of Metropolitan Toronto (1955-1958), Executive Secretary of the North York Social Planning Council (1958-1960), and Assistant Director of the Alcoholism and Drug Addiction Research Foundation (1960). He also lectured in the Department of Sociology at the University of Toronto (1961-1962).
In 1962, Hill became the first full time director of the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) to administer Ontario's new Human Rights Code. Later, in 1972, he became Ontario Human Rights Commissioner.
In 1973, Hill resigned from the OHRC to establish his own human rights consulting firm, Daniel G. Hill and Associates. As director of the firm, he consulted and advised numerous governments and organisations including: the Canadian Labour Congress; the Toronto Metropolitan Police Department as well as the British Columbia and Bermuda governments. In 1984, Hill was appointed Ontario Ombudsman, a position he held until his retirement in 1989.
Hill also held a number of advisory positions such as: Special Advisor to the President of the University of Toronto on Human Rights and Civil Liberties; advisor to the Attorney General of Ontario regarding Sects and Cults; advisor to Toronto's Mayor Committee on Community and Race Relations. From 1973 to 1983, Hill was also a member of the Ontario Task Force on Legal Aid, Metro Toronto Police Complaints Board and the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal.
In addition to his professional activities and appointments, Hill was a noted authority on Canadian Black history. A founding member of the Ontario Black History Society, he wrote numerous articles on the subject. Among his best known publications, is the book, "The Freedom Seekers, Blacks in Early Canada", which has been approved as curriculum for high schools in various Canadian provinces.
Hill married Donna Bender in 1953 and the couple had three children - Larry, Karen, and Dan.
Daniel Hill died in June, 2003.