Paul Tuerr

An entrepreneurial life story and legacy book that beautifully captures the life of business and community leader and ethnic philanthropist, Paul Tuerr

In this remarkable biography of Paul Tuerr, Ulrich Frisse views the tumult of the twentieth century through the prism of an individual life. And what an extraordinary life Paul Tuerr has lived. In reading Frisse’s words, in poring over the wonderful photographs that enhance the story, I learned how a strong sense of purpose, history and family can motivate an individual to achieve excellence.

Dr. John English
Distinguished Professor Emeritus, University of Waterloo;
author of Citizen of the World – The Life of Pierre Elliott Trudeau
The Story

Written as an entrepreneurial life story and legacy book, A History of Success captures the fascinating story of Canadian immigrant entrepreneur Paul Tuerr (1920–2012). In following Paul’s steps from his childhood days in pre-World War II Europe through his immigration to Canada in the 1950s and growth as a visionary entrepreneur in the construction and land development sector, A History of Success transcends national and continental boundaries. As a passionate community leader, Paul Tuerr was a major contributor to the presence of the German ethnic group in the multi-ethnic mosaic of Canada for over five decades.

The Mandate

When the Tuerr family invited HBS’s Dr. Ulrich Frisse to write Paul’s biography, their goal was to create a record of his multi-faceted life that could be shared with family, friends and partners in the ethnic and business community. A proud Danube Swabian, that is a member of an ethnic German group that had lost its homeland in Europe as a result of World War II and expulsion, and a proud German-Canadian at the same time, Paul was determined to use his story as a way to bring to life the rich history of his vanished hometown community as well as the larger story of the German ethnic group in Canada.

The Solution

In-depth interviews and intensive research allowed us to tell the story of Paul’s life in its various contexts. Photography from archives in Europe visually enhanced the story of the German-speaking settlement areas of the Habsburg Empire, and of the South Eastern Danube area in particular, that formed the contextual backbone of Paul’s upbringing in Europe. This was matched by substantial research into and textual and visual presentation of the history of Waterloo Region, Paul’s hometown community in Canada, and of German ethnic life in his adopted country. To make the story as widely accessible as possible, we created English and German-language versions of the book which were widely distributed in the ethnic community both in Canada and in Europe.

  • Entrepreneurial life story in multiple language versions
  • Celebration of value driven, successful immigrant entrepreneurship in a multi-ethnic context
  • Combines in-depth research into the history of the German ethnic community in former Yugoslavia and their expulsion during World War II with the history of Waterloo Region in Ontario, Canada
  • Foreword by Dr. John English, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, University of Waterloo, Canada, and former Member of Parliament

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