Winnipeg’s first family of hockey has lost its patriarch. R.M. (Bob) Chipman has died following a lengthy battle with bone cancer.
The 87-year-old was the founder of Megill-Stephenson, a diversified company with business interests in the automotive, real estate, construction, sports & entertainment and financial services industries.
Chipman was more than content to hang out in the back of the press conference announcing his family’s purchase, along with David Thomson, of the Atlanta Thrashers on May 31, 2011 -- but his daughter ushered him up to his seat in the front row. That team, of course, was soon to become the reborn Winnipeg Jets.
"He’s the greatest entrepreneur this city has seen," said Nick Logan, CEO of National Leasing, who worked alongside Chipman, the longtime chairman of the company.
"He was my mentor right out of business school and that continued for the next 38 years. I don’t know how much luckier you can get than that."
He is survived by daughter Susan Millican, three sons, Steve, Jeoff and Mark Chipman -- the latter now the governor of the Winnipeg Jets -- and their spouses and numerous grandchildren.