Barber, F. Craig The Ironman with a heart of gold - passed away peacefully in Bozeman, Montana on February 9, 2023, just shy of his eighty-fourth birthday. Craig was born Frederic Craig Barber, in Philadelphia, PA, the oldest of five children of Fred and Mildred Barber. Craig was very accomplished, both personally and professionally. In his freshman year at Miami University of Ohio, he met the love of his life, Deborah Beiser, whom he married the week after graduation in 1961. Craig served in the Marine Corps for the following 5 years while getting an MBA from Loyola University and welcoming his two eldest daughters, Deidre and Tara into the world. In 1965, Craig began a civilian marketing career working for General Mills, Playdough, and Kenner as daughters Megan and Bevin arrived to surround Craig with the five favorite women he cherished for the rest of his life. In 1972, the family moved back to Minneapolis for work, but most importantly, he was able to spend many happy hours running and bicycling the lakes. One of his daughters stakes the claim that he was one of Minneapolis' original bicycle commuters. Craig worked in marketing and development until recessionary challenges shifted his career into a vocation. As layoffs hit not only the country but the Barber family, Craig began volunteering at his church helping others to navigate loss and job search. He brought his undergraduate Psychology degree, along with his own hard-won wisdom around resume writing, interviewing, and networking, to others and became one of the country's first outplacement counselors and an early board member of Outplacement International, and gathered an Executive MBA from Harvard University. Craig lived his belief that to be truly happy we must be of service, and he would encourage everyone he coached to spend at least 10 hours helping another before working to find employment. In 1995, Craig and Deborah followed their passion for the outdoors, and three of their grandchildren, and moved to Bozeman. Throughout his life, Craig was a dedicated athlete, completing thirty-five marathons and a slew of road and Xterra triathlons, including the Ironman in Kona, Hawaii at age fifty-five. He loved alpine skiing and was proud to be a professional ski instructor for over two decades and to bring those talents to teaching adaptive skiing through Eagle Mount. But if you were to ask Craig what he was most proud of, without hesitation, he would say his family: being a husband, father, father-in-law, and grandfather. He adored his family, and they adored him. Craig loved to walk behind his wife and daughters when out on adventures to ensure that they were always safe, yet he constantly encouraged and empowered each to shine bright. A vocal supporter of women's rights, Craig surprised Deborah with one of the first National Organization for Women (NOW) memberships in the 1970s. He read voraciously about parenting and women's empowerment and eventually brought that passion and expertise to serve on the Bozeman boards of Eagle Mount and Thrive. In addition to all his accomplishments and important roles, Craig will be remembered for his quiet nature, gentle spirit, dry sense of humor, and his ability to listen with compassion and presence. He will also be remembered for his aesthetic and artistic eye that manifested through beautiful Barber homes, his eclectic dress, and his modern art collection. What an amazing gift Craig - "D" to his grandchildren - was to the world. He will be deeply missed. Craig is survived by his wife Deborah, his four daughters Deidre (Bruce) Combs, Tara (Chris) Poseley, Megan (JJ) Allende, and Bevin (John) Campbell, ten grandchildren, and his siblings, Jan (Carole) and Tom (Ling). In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the F. Craig Barber Memorial Alpine Ski Program Scholarship at the Montana Community Foundation at PO Box 1145, Helena, MT 59624-1145, mtcf.org. A memorial service for Craig is scheduled for 1 p.m. on July 26th, at Plymouth Congregational Church, 1900 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis.
Plymouth Congregational Church, 1900 Nicollet Avenue, Minneapolis
1:00 PM, Wednesday July 26th, 2023
F Craig Barber Memorial Alpine Ski Scholarship Fund
Craig loved to ski and believed all children should have access to pursue the sports they love.
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