Robert M. Kurtz, Jr. Receives Honorary Degree at LHU Commencement
May 14, 2014-At the 137th Commencement of Lock Haven University, Robert M. Kurtz, Jr. was presented with an
Honorary Degree of Doctor of Public Service. “There is no one that I know of who deserves this recognition today more that Mr. Robert M. Kurtz, Jr.” These words, spoken by Lock Haven University Trustee, Guy Graham, were spoken of a man whose legacy is well known within the Clearfield community, as well as the community of Lock Haven University. Robert Kurtz, Jr. is a Founding Father of the Lock Haven University Clearfield Campus. He and his wife, Marilyn, have given to the community of Clearfield in many ways.
The Chamber of Commerce, the town library, a local church…these are only a few of the local area to which Mr. and Mrs. Kurtz have donated. One of their most important gifts to the Clearfield community, however, was the donation of over half the value of the land where the Lock Haven University Clearfield campus is located. This donation, coupled with other contributions to the Clearfield Educational Foundation, have a value of over $750,000.
The family’s business, Kurtz Brothers, spanning three generations, has provided school supplies to the entire region of Clearfield. Most of the books the children of Clearfield learned from were printed by Kurtz Brothers. Little did the Kurtz family realize 120 years ago their contribution to education, especially to that of higher education, would be so exceptional.
Mr. Kurtz, who still serves as CEO of Kurtz Brothers, graduated from The Mercerburg Academy, the University of Redlands, the Pennsylvania State University, and served in the United States Army in Germany. Throughout the years, he has served as a leader of many civil, charitable, historical and economic organizations in the Clearfield area. In addition to being a business owner, and providing service to his community, Mr. Kurtz is also an award-winning amateur photographer and publisher of several books.
Before hooding Mr. Kurtz and presenting him with his diploma, President Fiorentino said, “It is obvious why we are recognizing Mr. Kurtz for his public service in support of the Clearfield community and Lock Haven University.”
“I would like to express my thanks. This was one of the honors I would have never expected,” said Kurtz. “I’m just overwhelmed and floored by it. Thank you, Lock Haven, and thank you, all of you.”
Lock Haven University is a member of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE), the largest provider of higher education in the commonwealth. Its 14 universities offer more than 250 degree and certificate programs in more than 120 areas of study. Nearly 405,000 system alumni live and work in Pennsylvania.