Shaw Communications Inc. founder and executive chair JR Shaw has died at 85

CALGARY — The founder of Shaw Communications Inc., JR Shaw, has died at 85 years old, the company said Tuesday.

Shaw, who ran the company as chief executive until 1998 and remained its executive chairman, “passed away peacefully” on Monday, the company said in a statement.

JR founded Capital Cable Television Co. Ltd. in 1966 in Edmonton. It connected its first cable customer and went on the air for the first time in 1971, eventually growing into one of the country’s largest cable providers.

In recent years Shaw has grown its wireless business, becoming the fourth largest network in Canada.

JR remained active in the company to the end, serving as executive chair until his death.

“I spoke to JR every day about the business. He was engaged and interested in everything the company was doing — from the latest technology being rolled out to how we were meeting the needs of families across Western Canada,” said Brad Shaw, JR’s son and the company’s current CEO, in a statement.

Brad will take over JR’s executive chairman position on an interim basis, the company said. The appointment will be confirmed at an April 9 board meeting.

“My family and I are at a loss for words and deeply saddened at JR’s passing,” Brad said.

“JR was the founder and leader of our company, but he was also an exceptional husband, a loving father, grandfather and great-grandfather. His legacy of love and compassion for people will live on for generations.”

Shaw was an active philanthropist who was named an Officer of the Order of Canada and received the Alberta Order of Excellence. He also received several honorary degrees.

JR served as the company’s CEO, overseeing its growth through acquisitions and other means — and a change of headquarters to Calgary from Edmonton — until 1998.

He stepped down and his eldest son, Jim Shaw, took over the role until 2010, when Jim’s younger brother Brad took on the job. Jim Shaw died in Jan. 2018 at the age of 60 following a brief illness.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 24, 2020.

Companies in this story: (TSX:SJR.B)

The Canadian Press

Business

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Parliament may need to be recalled again to approve wage subsidy program

OTTAWA — Canadians are supposed to get more details today of the… Continue reading

A message from the Advocate publisher

In good times and bad, The Red Deer Advocate has been here… Continue reading

US death toll eclipses China’s as reinforcements head to NYC

NEW YORK — The U.S. death toll from the coronavirus climbed past… Continue reading

Long john producer Stanfield’s reacts to COVID-19 with ‘pivot’ to medical gowns

HALIFAX — A historic Canadian undergarment factory famed for long johns and… Continue reading

The latest numbers on COVID-19 in Canada

The latest numbers of confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases in Canada as… Continue reading

WATCH: Firefighters, RCMP help Red Deer boy celebrate 3rd birthday

Firefighters and RCMP officers helped a Red Deer boy celebrate his third… Continue reading

Alberta Health Services provides COVID-19 prevention tips

Alberta Health Services has a number of recommendations for people amid the… Continue reading

Alberta government website has latest COVID-19 statistics

Red Deer Advocate readers can stay up to date on the COVID-19… Continue reading

Sylvan Lake photographer captures family life from the front steps

Deb McNeil is taking porch portraits to share the uniqueness of families during COVID-19

A message from Waskasoo Medical Clinic

A Message From Waskasoo Medical Clinic Waskasoo Medical Clinic (including our walk-in… Continue reading

Montreal Impact midfielder Shamit Shome making most of time alone

Montreal Impact midfielder Shamit Shome has been making the most of his… Continue reading

Queen’s Plate, Canadian Open close to decisions for 2020 during COVID-19 pandemic

TORONTO — While Toronto’s ban on city-led events through June 30 does… Continue reading

Organizations inject funds to support Canada’s arts sector during COVID-19

Arts organizations are injecting funds to help cultural institutions and creators stay… Continue reading

Need a laugh? SiriusXM launches channel for female comics

NEW YORK — The midst of a global pandemic might seem like… Continue reading

Most Read