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Robert A. Stead

Robert A. Stead

Robert “Bob” Stead, Mayor Emeritus of the Town of Wolfville, passed away peacefully on January 18, 2014.
A remarkable individual well-known for his visionary leadership and commitment to community, Bob leaves behind a shining example of a life both fully and well-lived.
Born in Howe Bay, P.E.I., a place that would remain dear to him throughout his life, Bob first came to Wolfville, N.S., in the fall of 1961 as a student at Acadia University. Over the course of his undergraduate years, he came to realize that, in addition to acquiring a good education, he serendipitously had found the place that he would eventually call ‘home’. After a six-year teaching career on ‘the Island’, Bob returned to Wolfville to take up the position of Assistant Registrar and Director of Admissions at Acadia University. A 27-year career would ensue.
Both within the University and externally, Bob became the face of the Admissions Office. He epitomized the personal touch that is an Acadia trademark and was exceptionally well-liked and well-respected by colleagues and students alike.
Prior to his retirement from Acadia, Bob was elected to Wolfville’s Town Council, a foray into municipal governance that would ultimately become his second career and would last for 24 years. He was elected Mayor in 1997, a position he held until October of 2012. During his 15 years as Mayor, Bob led the town through a number of legislative firsts, setting the stage for other municipal units within the province and across the country to follow suit. Notable examples are bylaws making all indoor public places smoke-free (2001) and legislation prohibiting smoking in cars carrying children (2008). Bob was also passionate about the development and maintenance of outdoor public spaces. He was instrumental in the creation of the Wolfville Watershed Nature Preserve and thrilled to see the first piece of outdoor art unveiled at the Waterfront in September of 2013.
With Bob’s many successes and his depth of experience at the local level, it was inevitable that he would be encouraged to participate in broader forums for municipal governance. He served on the executive of the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities for several years and on the executive of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities for two years.
A dedicated and caring leader known for his deep and abiding commitment to public office and community service, Bob’s accomplishments have earned him considerable recognition and a number of awards, the most recent of which is UNSM’s Ken Simpson Memorial Award for outstanding leadership in municipal governance (2013).
Upon his retirement from municipal government, Bob redirected his time and considerable abilities to the L’Arche Homefires Society serving as Co-Chair of their “Building Our Dream” Capital Campaign.
In addition to his colleagues in the field of municipal governance, the ever-grateful citizens of the town of Wolfville, and his many, many friends, Bob will be sadly missed by his partner of 17 years, Danny Chandler; his sisters, Joyce Dixon, Stratford, P.E.I.; Clara Palmer, Ottawa; Arlene Singleton, Orleans, Ontario; Marion Hunter, Charlottetown; Coleen (Basil) Hunter, Stratford, P.E.I.; his stepchildren, Devin (Jen) Chandler, Hantsport; Tyler Chandler, Windsor; and Kaitlyn Chandler, Edmonton; and many nieces and nephews. Bob was predeceased by his parents, Gladys and Charles Stead, and by his sister, Islay.
The family wishes to thank the team of health professionals who supported Bob through the past year: Dr. Robyn MacFarland, Dr. Robert Rutledge, and the nurses at the Dickson Centre of the QEII Hospital; and Dr. Karen Burch and the VON nurses of the Palliative Care Team at the Valley Regional Hospital. Special thanks is also extended to Bob’s long-time friends, Bruce Walker and Janet Kirk, who with unfailing support and devotion, journeyed with Bob throughout the course of his illness.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, January 21, in the University Hall at Acadia University, The Reverend Timothy McFarland officiating. A private family burial will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations in memory may be made to the L’Arche Homefires “Building Our Dream” Campaign, 10 Gaspereau Avenue, Wolfville, NS, B4P 2C2.
Online condolences may be made by visiting www.serenitylindsayfuneralhome.ca. Arrangements have been entrusted to Serenity Lindsay Funeral Home, Wolfville Chapel (568 Main St) 542-4656.




Local Services

QEH Foundation

Heart and Stroke Foundation

Prince County Hospital Foundation
(902) 432-2547

Alzheimer Society of Prince Edward Island

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