Connor StewartThe Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce was saddened to learn of the passing of 2008 Chamber President Connor Stewart.

“Connor served his term as president and then remained on the board as a past president, and in a variety of capacities, through 2012,” said long term Chamber Office Manager Laura Kennedy. “We kept losing the current past president and Connor always stepped up and filled the roll with enthusiasm and vigor.”

He was very active in community serving as the chairperson of the Sam Steele Society from 2011 to 2013. He was on the Live Smart BC – Board of the Citizens’ Conservation Council – Kootenay Region.

Connor was instrumental in the formation of the Chamber’s Retail Committee. From that group came the Black Friday program and the “10 Percent Initiative”.

Speaking on that 2012 Retail Committee’s Ten Percent initiative Stewart said, “This was a story I came across in a book I was reading. It caught my attention right away as it completely related to a number of things we were beginning to investigate here in Cranbrook. It is simple, it has been proven to work, and it includes absolutely everyone in the community – no one is excluded from the benefits this initiative can bring to Cranbrook.”

He went on to say, “Spending more locally contributes to a stronger and more sustainable economy. That’s the fact we are looking to get out to everyone in Cranbrook. The Ten Percent Shift campaign is based on a simple but powerful idea. It encourages people to “shift” 10 per cent of their existing spending to local businesses.” It’s not about spending more money, but redirecting it.

Never one to not be involved in his community Connor was a candidate in the 2011 local government elections in Cranbrook in 2011.

The Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce offers our condolences to Connor’s family and friends during this difficult time of loss and grief.