Frances Edward (Ted) Atkinson was born in Vancouver in 1904 or 1905 and his family moved to Summerland in 1907.
He had always had an interest in horticulture and his first job was with the Horticultural Gang at the Dominion Experimental Station.
He graduated from Oregon State University in 1925 and returned to Summerland to found the first fruit and vegetable laboratory, an establishment that would play a vital role in the Okanagan fruit and vegetable industry.
Some of the products developed in this lab were the basis for products which supplemented the food supply for military and civilian populations in the United Kingdom during World War II. Atkinson died in 1992.