Dr. Robert Stairs

“Chemistry is the central science. It is the science the world needs most. 
- Dr. Robert Stairs

Picture of David Stairs and his wife Sibyl

Chemistry is a subject Dr. Robert Stairs has always been passionate about, starting from a young age when he received his first chemistry set  at Trent University and following him throughout a distinguished career – first as a member of the Canadian Navy, serving in motor torpedo boats in the North Sea, to his academic pursuits at McGill, the University of Western Ontario and Cornell, and finally to his role as professor at Queen’s and then at Trent, where he retired from in 1990.

Professor Stairs was the first chemistry professor hired at Trent University in 1964. During his 26-year career at the University, he was chair of the department twice – once at the beginning of his career and again at the end. Since retiring, Prof. Stairs still keeps up a close relationship with Trent, returning regularly for lectures and special events, and maintaining a modest research program. He has also been active in volunteer work with the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

His late wife, Sibyl, also had affection for Trent, having gradated with a degree in English and Anthropology in 1981.