Seventh Step Memory Lane
Paul Raymund Graham Tribute
November 24, 1942 – May 17, 1990
The 7th Step Society of Canada, along with the Graham family and friends, commemorate the 30th anniversary of the passing of Paul Graham. Paul was an extraordinary human being. He was born the youngest brother of Pat Graham, who brought the 7th Step Society to Alberta in 1971 and was instrumental in developing it into the Canadian wide organization it is today.
As a troubled youth Paul rose above poverty and adversity and became a social worker and community advocate for the marginalized of our society. During his time as an offender, he was sentenced to 10 years in various institutions for fraud and theft related charges before he decided that he was ready to take his life in a positive direction. This was accomplished through the support from, and dedication he felt to, the 7th Step Society.
He began by pursuing post secondary education at Mount Royal College in Calgary. Once completed, he joined the team working at the 7th Step CRF in Edmonton, Ab. He worked as the lead counselor and upon the departure of George Myette, he stepped into the Director’s role.
At the time of his death, Paul was the District Director of the John Howard Society in Saskatoon and was commencing classes towards a Master of Social Work degree. After being nominated by his staff at John Howard, he posthumously won the Solicitor General of Canada Crime Prevention Award – Certificate of Merit for outstanding community service. His diplomas and awards are framed and hanging in the boardroom of Alberta Seventh Step Society and 7th Step Society of Canada’s main office in Calgary, Alberta (as seen below). Paul’s story was one of courage, hope and healing. By donating his accomplishments to the 7th Step Society it is hoped that others who view them and learn of his life story will be empowered and inspired to create positive changes in their own lives.
Paul’s life is a tribute to the triumph of the human spirit and those of us who knew and loved him consider it to be an honor to have been a part of his amazing journey on this earth. He will be forever in our hearts.
Written by Gwen Gleason-Graham.