Memorable Manitobans: Stefan J. Stefanson (?-2008)
Farmer, sheriff, municipal official, community activist.
Born at Gimli to Valdi and Gudny Stefanson, he farmed in partnership with his father until the mid-1970s. He also worked as a County Court Bailiff and went on to work at the Sheriff’s Office in Winnipeg, eventually becoming the Chief Sheriff for the Province of Manitoba, the first non-lawyer to hold the position.
He was proud of his Icelandic heritage and traveled to Iceland more than 35 times, starting in 1968. He served as President of the Icelandic National League of North America. He received the Order of the Falcon from the Government of Iceland, was an Honorary Life Member of the Icelandic National League of North America and the Icelandic National League of Iceland. In April 2007, he received the Laurence Johnson Lifetime Achievement Award. He was a founding member of the Gimli Credit Union, Reeve of the Rural Municipality of Gimli (1956-1960), President of the Manitoba Farmers Union, founding member of the Icelandic Cultural Corporation (Museum) and director on the Manitoba Provincial Museum Board.
In 1936, he married Olla Einarson (?-2000). They had five children: Lorna Stefanson, Ernest Stefanson, Maria Stefanson, Valdimar Stefanson, and Eric Stefanson.
He died at Gimli on 2 January 2008.
Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 5 January 2008.
“Manitobans’ Legacy a Better Province,” Winnipeg Free Press, 4 January 2009, page B1.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 9 April 2022