Long-time friend of Fresno Pacific University Marvin Steinert, 94, Bakersfield, died April 22, 2017. “Marvin Steinert will be remembered as our most generous donor to the university, the FPU Foundation and the seminary. His interests were wide-ranging but always in the best interest of the university,” said Mark Deffenbacher, executive director, Fresno Pacific University Foundation.
Marvin met Nadene Kruger in 1940 and they were married for more than 70 years before her death in 2014. After Marvin returned from World War II, he started with Union Oil, then spent 20 years with Rudnick and Klipstein, where he began as an accountant and soon started managing cattle feedlots. This is also when Marvin began his career in land development, ultimately getting a real estate license. Among his other ventures was Kern Livestock Supplement and Kern Livestock Grain.
The couple’s more than $4.6 million in gifts to FPU provided significant funding for Steinert Athletic Complex, Steinert Campus Center, AIMS Hall of Mathematics & Science, the Harold and Betty Haak Tennis Complex, McDonald Hall, the recent track resurfacing, land expansion and the ongoing Performing Arts Center project, plus the endowments for Steinert Campus Center and the Steinert Kruger Scholarship. Marvin also brought his entrepreneurial expertise to the university as an emeritus member of the FPU Board of Trustees and Foundation Board.
Generosity and faith were one in the same for Marvin, who credited his father, Emanuel, for teaching him both. While supporting a family of four on $25 a week, Emanuel set aside $2.50 each week for the church collection plate. When Marvin and Nadene were honored as the Outstanding Philanthropists of 2011 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) San Joaquin Valley Chapter for their generosity to not only FPU, but Heritage Bible Church, Bakersfield Memorial Hospital and Kern County Teen Challenge, Marvin took no credit for himself. “It’s all through the grace of Jesus Christ,” he said.
Marvin and Nadene are not the only Steinerts with deep ties to the university. Alumni in the family include son Max Steinert (BA ’67), his wife, Charlotte (former student), and their daughters Stephanie Becker (former student), Jill Witcher (former student), Allison McNeely (BA ’98) and Megan Cardenas (BA ’02); son Randy (former student), his wife, Delores Steinert (BA ’69), and one of their two daughters, Kristine Reichel (BA ’95); and son Gary (former student).
Services will be Saturday, April 29, 2017, at 11:00 in Heritage Bible Church, Bakersfield.
More on Marvin at fpu.edu/steinert