For his efforts at helping many students and alumni over the past 30 years, John “Jack” Marczely recently received La Salle University’s John W. Finley Award, presented by the University’s Alumni Association to a graduate who has provided great service to La Salle.
“Jack Marczely has volunteered at virtually every level of University life: alumni relations, La Salle athletics, the La Salle fund, and one of his most treasured roles – mentoring students,” said Paul Burgoyne, the President of La Salle’s Alumni Association. “His unselfish work has provided much to La Salle and the students we serve.”
“One element of my motivation is the gratitude I have for La Salle, a gratitude for things that happen in life as a result of having a college education,” said Marczely, who lives in Marlton. Another is that he, too, benefitted from a mentor in the business world.
A native of Northeast Philadelphia, Marczely graduated from Northeast Catholic High School, and then enrolled at La Salle as a marketing major. While he said he had many excellent teachers in the school of business, it was English professor Claude Koch who made a lasting impression in his composition courses.
“He was a master on how you construct the phrasing of your writing to make sure you’re not talking about something else while the purpose of your remarks gets lost,” recalls Marczely. He was also fond of Dr. Joseph Flubacher, who taught economics, “and made complex issues very understandable, plus he was a Northeast Catholic High grad, too.”
Now retired, Marczely worked in sales for several companies, including Dial Corporation (makers of Dial soap), and Fruit of the Loom, and later as a manufacturer’s representative. “Fortunately, I had a mentor, who took an interest in me, set me up in business, and helped me be successful. When you have a mentor like that, you really feel it,” said Marczely. He became a sales representative, providing sales and store service for companies that did not have their own sales force.
“I had a lot of success and also headaches managing a business; however, meeting, working and cooperating with dedicated people was really to key to being successful. Building a team and giving everyone the opportunity to participate is one of life’s rewarding experiences. I think there’s a ministry aspect as well to my volunteer efforts. When you look at things as a ministry, it’s an answer to what’s in scripture; in Luke: the greatest commandment is, “that you love each other as I have loved you.’ If I can do that, then I can also take a step farther and believe the life of St. John Baptist de La Salle (who founded the order of the Christian Brothers, who operate La Salle).”
Marczely and his wife, Mickey, have two children and five grandchildren.