Catching Up With…Doug Kendzierski ‘83

     Doug left the hallowed halls of Curley after graduation in 1983 and made his way to UMBC where he earned a bachelor degree. He later received a master's degree from the University of Maryland at Baltimore.  He was able to establish a career in higher education at CCBC, then UMBC, in various roles. He was interested in training students in applications as personal computers were becoming more and more accessible and powerful. To that end,  Doug served as the founding president and CEO of UMBC Training Centers, LLC, the first for-profit venture within the University of Maryland system.  During his tenure from 2000-2003, the Baltimore Business Journal named him one of the top 40 young executives under 40. Of that time he says that “I learned more in 3 years than the previous 30.”

     But life’s pathways are not always straight. Doug felt a call that he admits was always lurking near the surface of his soul.  Having married in 1989, Doug could not entertain the call to priesthood.  So he entered the Diaconate Formation Program at St. Mary’s Seminary and University in 2005 and was ordained a permanent deacon in 2009. His first assignment was diaconal ministry at St. Rita’s and Sacred Heart of Mary parishes in Dundalk, where he spent 8 years.  A transfer to Little Italy finds Deacon Doug currently ministering at St. Leo’s, “a parish that I immediately fell in love with, and it has been my second home for the last 2 ½ years.”

     Upon ordination, it was necessary for Doug to step away from a fast-track career to enable his ministerial work.  He returned to CCBC, an institution that he worked for in the 90’s, and is a professor and Chair of a large Division of Applied Technology programs, including the Automotive, Aviation, Engineering and Industrial Programs.

     As was said earlier, Doug married the friend of his high school girlfriend in 1989, and according to him “she has literally saved me in more ways than one.  A TCHS grad, Lisa is an amazing wife and the mother of three outstanding young women.  My daughters are, respectively, a freshman at Towson University, a junior at Shepherd University in West Virginia, and a senior at Notre Dame University of Maryland, and are faith-filled girls who have never disappointed me a day in their lives.”

     When he reflects on Curley and his connections to alumni and Friars, Doug says this: “Beyond the outstanding education, where I finally learned to become a committed student, the personal bonds forged with my Curley brothers and the Friars persist to this day.  Many of my best friends are from the Class of 83, and I get to see them regularly.  Fr. Robert Twele married us, baptized our kids, served as my Spiritual Adviser, and has become a great friend.  Fr. Vince, Fr. Donald and countless other Friars have also been an amazing influence on my life and career, and I am blessed to get to see them periodically, and even celebrate mass with them. I entered Curley a little boy in 1979, and left a confident young man four years later, transformed in faith, learning, and friendship.”

     When he is not ministering or working, Doug likes to watch baseball and play baseball. After 35 consecutive years of playing organized baseball without a single significant injury, Doug blew out his knee in the third game of last summer, resulting in a successful complete knee reconstruction.  “So much for growing old gracefully,” he sighs.  But he did live out a fantasy at Orioles Camp in 2003, playing with the greats of the 1983 Championship Season. He was a part of Nathan Showalter’s (Buck’s Son) recent wedding at the Basilica, after baptizing him into the faith last Easter Vigil at Saint Leo’s.

     This writer crossed paths with Doug in the 1990’s when Doug hired me to teach NetWare and Microsoft classes at night at CCBC.  Now I see him every other Sunday at St. Leo’s Church where  Doug is a competent and thought-provoking preacher, and a joyful asset to the parish.

You can contact Doug at dkendzierski@ccbcmd.edu  or come to St. Leo’s on any given Sunday.

By Greg Malanowski '70


 

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