C.W. Gemmill Learning Center

The Clarence W. Gemmill Center

C. W. Gemmill Learning Center was dedicated on November 13, 2009

dedication ceremony for Clarence M Gemmill center

Thank You To The MacQueen Family & Innisfree Hotels For Your Support

Innisfree Hotels has been a corporate supporter and advocate for Independence for the Blind since 1994, when Julian MacQueen aided in the formation of a proper not-for-profit board and assumed the role as its first chairperson. For 20 years, he has continued to offer financial, legal support and guidance.

As a tribute to Kim MacQueen’s father, Clarence, and all who have lost the ability to see, Innisfree gave a substantial donation to Independence for the Blind to build its Pensacola-based training facility, now known as the Clarence W. Gemmill Training Center. A garden on the property was named for her mother, Jean, to recognize those who support the blind.

Clarence W. Gemmill's Advocacy For The Blind & Visually Impaired

After losing his sight at 34, he earned the position of field representative for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind. He became a skilled and compassionate advocate and went on to serve Southern Manitoba as C.N.I.B. District Manager. 

Clarence Gemmill’s job was to travel the whole province of Manitoba for the Canadian Institute of the Blind (CNIB) and train the blind. He was 90% blind and required a driver and the stories he would tell about the heroic members of the blind community were the inspiration.

Clarence was a man of size, in body and soul, with a large sense of humor to match. He would be pleased and gratified to have his name connected once again to service for the blind. If he was alive today to witness the work put forward by IB West's facilities in Pensacola and the surrounding counties, he would likely have exclaimed (in his booming voice) his characteristic praise of celebration: "That'll be glory for me!"

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