Ross McConnell, founder of Gateway Visual Communications of Mississauga, Ont., passed away on March 22, 2016, at age 80.
McConnell’s pioneering print efforts in the Greater Toronto Area saw him, along with his late wife Eunice McConnell, open Mississauga’s first reprographics firm in September of 1975, at the time called Gateway Reproductions Ltd. McConnell had gained his reprographics expertise by spending the previous 10 years as a sales leader with Xerox Canada.
While Euince handled Gateway’s accounts, McConnell focused on integrating some of the country’s first high-speed copy systems along with traditional blueprint technology to help drive the instant-print revolution in the Toronto area. In addition to serving traditional architectural and engineering markets, Gateway worked with major corporate clients like Northern Telecom and Kinney Shoes.
Gateway evolved as a family enterprise as McConnell’s sons David and Brian joined the business, who now lead the operation as President and VP of Operations, respectively. McConnell retired from the industry in 2001. He was also a founding member of the ONAQP to provide a voice and organization for small instant printers in an industry dominated at the time by large commercial printers.
Outside of the industry, McConnell, who spent his later years in Grand Bend, Ont., was involved with Rotary International for more 35 years and enjoyed antique car restoration and collecting, particularly his own 1953 Cadillac convertible.
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