The Official Flag of Toronto Designed by Rene DeSantis in 1974

We were honoured to visit Toronto City Hall today and present each member of City Council with an autographed, limited-edition print that celebrates the Toronto Flag, the 50th Anniversary of George Brown College, and Toronto’s modern history.

Now 45 years old, Toronto’s official flag was born of a public design competition held by City Council in 1974. A third-year George Brown graphic design student at the time, Rene DeSantis was declared the winner by a unanimous decision. In 1997, a second competition was held following Toronto’s amalgamation; however, it was decided that the new entries paled in comparison to the original, and so DeSantis’ design remains.

DeSantis credits this accomplishment to helping open doors when he went looking for a job after graduation. “If success comes in a thousand steps, what college did was take me up to the 999th,” says DeSantis, who is now the co-founder and President of Montana Steele Advertising, adding, “Without George Brown College, I would have never designed Toronto’s flag and would not be where I am today”.

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