Colonel Steve Fenstermacher named 2014 Distinguished Alumnus of the year

Col. Stephen Fenstermacher
Col. Stephen Fenstermacher

The Kutztown Area School District Education Foundation recently held itís annual meeting. At that meeting officers were elected for a one year term: President, Rob Gottlund; Vice-President, Robert Grim, esq; Secretary, Sheila Fulton; Treasurer, Jason Feiertag. The Executive Director continues to be Dr. Brenda Winkler

The meeting also involved the annual audit review with the foundationís auditing firm, Reinsel Kuntz Lesher.

The Board also announced the 2014 Distinguished Alumnus of the year, Colonel (ret.) Steve Fenstermacher Kutztown Area High School class of 1973.

Colonel Fenstermacher was born on Sept. 23, 1955 in Oceanside, Calif,. He graduated from Kutztown Area High School in 1973 and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Logistics from the Pennsylvania State University in 1977. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps on graduation day.


During his 31 years of active service, Colonel Fenstermacher had numerous assignments throughout the United States and spent a considerable amount of time traveling including short trips to Europe and an operational deployment to Cuba to provide humanitarian aid to Haitian and Cuban refugees. He also spent more than eight years on the island of Okinawa where he deployed throughout the Western Pacific to countries such as Thailand, the Philippines and South Korea.

As a Colonel, he served in the Pentagon on the staff of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs as the Head of the Logistics Information Systems Division. He was in the Pentagon during the terrorist attack on Sept. 11, 2001. Following that assignment, he commanded Marine Wing Support Group 17, an organization with 1,300 people responsible for providing aviation ground support to the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing throughout the Pacific Theater. He was then reassigned as the Chief of Staff for the Wing which consisted of over 5,000 people and 200 combat aircraft based in Japan and Hawaii with smaller detachments continually deployed throughout the Pacific as well as Iraq, Afghanistan and Africa. As the Chief, he managed a staff of 400 Marines and sailors. After four years in the Western Pacific, he returned to Quantico, Va., as the Deputy and then the Acting Director of the Personnel Management Division. There he supervised a staff of 250 Marines and 180 civilians responsible for managing the manpower needs of the Marines Corps including assignments, retirements, promotions, performance evaluation, career planning, records management, and military awards.

He is a graduate of the Army Command & General Staff College and the Marine Corps War Collage, and he earned a Masters Degree in Information Systems Management from the Naval Postgraduate School. He also served as the Director of the Marine Corps Supply School and was a Faculty Advisor at the Marine Corps Command & Staff College.

He retired from the Marine Corps in 2008 and immediately began working for Henry Brothers Electronics as a project manager where he coordinated the installation of video systems in urban combat training facilities at Marine and Navy bases throughout the country. He even returned to supervise a project on Okinawa. Henry Brothers was acquired by Kratos Defense and Security Solutions in 2010. Colonel Fenstermacher remained with the company and in 2013 he transitioned to the Kratos National Accounts department. He works as a project manager coordinating the installation of access control and video surveillance systems for investment banks throughout the country. His larger clients include Prudential, Credit Suisse, CHUBB and PNC.

Colonel Fenstermacher married the former Jill Rosanne Konemann, a Kutztown Area High School classmate, on Nov. 27, 1976. They have two children, Tim and Amy, and two grandchildren, Max and Grace.

Colonel Fenstermacher will be the guest of honor at a reception the night before graduation (date and location to be set) and the following night he will deliver the commencement address at KAHS.

The Kutztown Area School District Education Foundation was founded in 2005 and has received charitable donations in excess of half a million dollars. The priority goal is for monies earned from those donations to be used for scholarships and special projects as requested. In addition, the foundation also provides funding to the district for individual class projects and educational programs that are not covered by the current budget. It also manages monies received through the Pennsylvania Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program which affords the district with technological advances that are not budgeted. Through the past year those monies totaled over $250,000.00. Please contact any one of the officers if you or your company are interested in any of the programs the foundation is part of.

From Kutztown Publishing Company