John S. Carman, former owner and president, Stand Fast Packaging Products (now Stand Fast Group) in Carol Stream, Illinois, passed away on Thursday, July 2, at 90.

Born on April 18, 1930, in Chicago, Carman graduated from St. Gregory’s High School and Loyola University. He was a U.S. Army veteran and served in the Korean War from 1953-1955. After his military service he began his career in the corrugated packaging business working with Georgia Pacific. In 1967, he joined his colleague John Morris and founded Stand Fast Packaging Products in Addison, Illinois, beginning only with a bandsaw set up in his basement. Today, Stand Fast Group is a $50 million company employing 120 people. It is led by his sons Jay Carman, along with sons John Carman Jr., Keith Carman and Scott Carman.

He was a founding member of AICC in 1974 and was active on AICC’s Board of Directors in the 1980s, first as Regional Vice President of AICC’s Region Six (Illinois and Wisconsin) and then as a Director at Large. He served on the Membership and Containerboard and Sheet Supply committees. He was also a founder and member of what was known as the Sheet Plant Owners and Operators Club, aka, the “SPOOC Group,” an informal club of AICC members whose primary purpose was an annual ski outing in Vail, Colorado. In addition to Carman, the club’s members included Bill Mazzaco of Packaging Innovators; Jerry Hardison, Lone Star Container Corp.; Douglas Volk, Volk Packaging and Jim Nelson of Nelson Container Corp.

Recognizing the success of Stand Fast Packaging Products, the University of Illinois Institute for Entrepreneurship Studies in 1985 named John to the Chicago Area Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame. 

He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Patricia; five sons, John Jr., Jay, Keith, Scott and Jeffrey; a daughter Kristin; 10 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Expressions of sympathy may be sent to the family c/o, Stand Fast Group, 710 Kimberly Drive, Carol Stream, Illinois, 60188.

Memorial remembrances may be made to Chicago Alzheimer’s Association via or to Mercy Home in Chicago via

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