Queen’s University remembers noted alumnus and benefactor Alfred Bader
3rd January 2019

Queen’s is paying tribute to someone who has done so much for the university.

Alfred Bader, the noted alumnus and benefactor, passed away over the holidays. His legacy certainly lives on not only at his alma mater but in the city of Kingston as well.

Bader was 94. He died on Dec. 23 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Professor Thomas Harris, the interim provost and academic vice-principal at the school, knew Bader and can’t say enough about him.

“He came to Canada as a refugee, really as a prisoner of war,” Harris said. “When he finally finished up high school in Quebec, he applied to some Canadian universities. Universities had a Jewish quota and some universities wouldn’t let him in, but the registrar of Queen’s let him in.”

Bader earned his Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from Queen’s in 1945. An extremely successful chemist and businessman in the United States, Bader always gave back. In fact, he’s considered the school’s most generous benefactor. There are plenty of examples, such as the Agnes Etherington Art Centre.

“There are more than 500 works in the Bader Collection, the core of which is more than 200 paintings from the baroque era spanning the 16th through 18th centuries,” said Jacquelyn Coutre, the curator of Bader Collection. “Included in that collection are three of the six authenticated paintings by Rembrandt in public Canadian collections.”

Another gift from Bader to Queen’s was 15th-century Herstmonceux Castle in England. The Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts on the city’s waterfront was opened in 2014. The revue hosted 240 events last year plus classes and rehearsal space.

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