Stu Laird was born in Assiniboia, Saskatchewan. His family relocated to Calgary where he attended Lord Beaverbrook High. He then went on to continue his education at the University of Calgary where he was a five-year starter with the Calgary Dinosaurs from 1978 to 1982; four years at the defensive end position and his last as linebacker. Laird’s path to a professional football career was not an easy one. Having been overlooked in the 1983 Draft, and not one to back away from any challenge, he tried out for both Saskatchewan and Montreal that same year, with neither team picking him up. In 1984, he again tried out; this time for Calgary and stayed the year on their practice roster. By 1985, his perseverance had paid off. He made the full-time roster of the Stampeders and remained one of their top defensive players until his retirement in 1996. Along the way, Stu spent countless hours serving his community unselfishly and was a leader in community appearances promoting not only the Stampeder organization, but many charity organizations as well. Stu earned three nominations as the team’s candidate for the Tom Pate Award; winning it in 1992. In 1991 he was selected as the CFLPA "Man of the Year". His efforts on and off the field were also recognized by the Stampeders in 1988, 1992 and again in 1995 when Stu became the recipient of their prestigious President’s Ring, a feat achieved by only 3 players in Stampeder history. In 1986 he was part of the Stamps CFLPA Outstanding Defensive Line, who to this day retain the record of most Quarterback sacks in a season with 85. Throughout his football career, Stu became active in the Players’ Association, first serving as a Player Representative and holding several positions on the Executive over a 20 year span. He assumed the role of President of the PA in accordance with the By-Laws of the Association when Dan Ferrone stepped down to enter politics. At the next Annual General Meeting in April, 2001, he was elected to the post and remained president until 2012 when he passed the reigns to ProPlayers president Mike Morreale. Under his tutelage, the PA introduced CFLPA ProPlayers, its’ Marketing and Sales division and the Players’ Association continues to grow and prosper. Stu continues with his many community appearances, working as a fulltime firefighter with the Calgary Fire Department and keeping busy raising and enjoying family life with his wife, Pam and their two children, Matthew and Danielle.