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Don and Tracey Zehr
For local developer and philanthropist Don Zehr, improving quality of life for community members and retaining local talent has always been at the heart of what he does.
Don’s passion for community-oriented development has changed the way we live, work and play all the way from Downtown Kitchener to Midtown to across the tech sector. He is equally passionate about supporting local charities.
"As a kid, I was always involved in helping out my Dad with Rotary causes and Mennonite projects, like the annual relief sales in New Hamburg. Over the years it just became part of who I am."
Don's support of Kitchener Public Library goes back many years, but most recently, he and his wife Tracey decided to give a gift to support the audio and digital media lab, Heffner Studio. When the couple heard about what the studio would offer in terms of technology and programming, they knew it was going to be a game-changer for the community.
"Add this to everything else that is happening at Kitchener Public Library and you can safely say libraries have become cool," says Don.
Don and Tracey's support for Heffner Studio received some additional validation while at an international conference. During a presentation about reinventing ways to enrich and preserve urban neighbourhoods, the couple realized this was exactly what the library is doing.
"That made me very proud."