Donald T. Shire

SCARBOROUGH – Donald T. Shire, 91, died peacefully in Scarborough, Maine where he had been living for nearly 20 years. Donald had a long and successful life giving of himself professionally as well as personally.

Born and raised in Roxbury, Mass., he was the eldest of four children, Donald, David, Barbara, and Thomas, Jr. The first in his family to go to college he graduated from Boston University’s School of Management in 1951 with a B.S. degree in business administration and from its School of Law in 1953. He later attended the Advanced Management Program at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Business.

Donald began his professional career as a young attorney with a law firm in Boston, Herrick, Smith, Donald, Farley & Ketchum and then served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy. It was in the Navy that Donald developed the expertise in contracts and supply chains that made him such an asset to the firm with whom he built his career – Air Products. Joining this firm in 1957 as their first corporate attorney, he settled in Allentown, Pa. where for the next 35+ years he built a life of service to the community and the company.

Donald had many achievements over the course of his life – first corporate secretary, the creation of the Energy and Materials department, founder and President of Planned Parenthood of Lehigh Valley, board of directors for the Lehigh Valley Hospital, Lehigh Valley Business/Education Partnership and Executive Service Corps. His activities in the community also included the township zoning board and its planning commission. He was the founding member and first vice chairman of the Lehigh County Advisory Committee on Parks and Recreation and was director of Family and Children’s Service, trustee of the Parkland Community Library, and member of Citizens for Lehigh County Progress. Donald served on the Muhlenberg College Board of Trustees from 1976-1995. He received the alumni association award for service to the College by a non-alumnus in 1986 and with his wife, in 1991, established the Donald and Anne Shire Distinguished Teacher Professorship to recognize and promote excellent teaching within the College faculty. Shire retired as senior vice president of administration for Air Products & Chemicals, Inc., in 1993.

Giving back to his community was a strong ethic that he impressed upon his children. He is survived by his sons Andrew and Daniel, and his daughter Jennifer, along with their spouses Suzanne, Tabitha, and Dale, respectively. He was a loving grandfather to Christina, A.T., Nat, Drew, Dan, Emily, and others ‘adopted’ along the way. His legacy to them is his love for Maine and his beloved cottage in Jonesport where he enjoyed his family, the ocean and his beautiful gardens.

Online condolence messages can be submitted at the Chad E. Poitras Cremation and Funeral Service website,

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