Remembering Jon Kinsley: An Incredible Ambassador for Penn-Mar - Penn-Mar

Remembering Jon Kinsley: An Incredible Ambassador for Penn-Mar

Posted on February 3, 2023

By Gregory T. Miller, President and Chief Executive Officer, Penn-Mar Human Services | Chief Executive Officer, Penn-Mar Foundation

Our entire Penn-Mar community has been in mourning since last week when we learned that our dear friend and tireless supporter Jon Kinsley, 59, and his brother Tim, 57, died together in an avalanche while on a ski trip in British Columbia, Canada.

Jon was an executive at the York-based Kinsley Enterprises, the parent company of Kinsley Construction and Kinsley Properties, and Tim was the president of the real estate development company, Kinsley Properties.   

Most recently, Jon and Beth Pitts-Madonna co-chaired Penn-Mar’s $7.5 million Building Bold Futures Capital Campaign and it is heartbreaking to know he won’t be with us when we celebrate this historic achievement at our March Gala.

Truly, we have lost one of Penn-Mar’s most passionate advocates.

To my knowledge, prior to his relationship with Penn-Mar, the disability community was not part of Jon’s life experience which made his commitment to our organization that much more impressive.

His first exposure to Penn-Mar was when he was a guest at one of our events in 2008. Our mission immediately captured him and from that moment on, he never looked back.

Jon joined our Board of Directors in 2008, served as Vice Chair for three more years, and was our Board Chair from 2016-2019. I know Jon was presented with an unlimited amount of opportunities to serve on Boards in our community and yet he chose to stick with us for 15 years and counting. He was an incredible ambassador for Penn-Mar.

I think what I always appreciated most about him was his thoughtful approach to anything he said or did. Emotionally he was never too high or too low. He was always rock solid.

When we had challenges, Jon preferred action to hand wringing. He was always about keeping the focus on how we could get to the “next step.” He understood at a very deep level how all of our Board actions impacted the men and women we support and why it was imperative to be financially strong and forward thinking to alleviate any risk to them, our team, or our business strategy.

Jon loved our mission and always wanted the people we support to be full participants in the community. He appreciated the legacy implications of our capital campaign and the resources it would provide to ensure that our organization can continue our tradition of innovation. And most importantly, he embodied the leadership qualities that were so necessary to create the energy and generosity that would propel us to fulfilling our financial and strategic goals.

I believe Jon’s commitment to Penn-Mar was borne out of gratitude for all the blessings and good fortune he experienced in this life. The Kinsley family is known for their generosity to countless charitable causes in the community. That is why we chose Jon’s parents, Bob and Anne, to be our first honorees at our 2017 Gala.

Just the way Jon carried himself was so inspirational. When you engaged him in conversation, it was like talking to an old friend. He was the most down-to-earth guy you could ever meet. Jon never had an agenda other than what was best for Penn-Mar and he was always 100 percent attentive and interested in the issue at hand.

Although he was a very busy man with many family commitments, Jon was always there for me in my role as CEO and made many personal sacrifices to guide us on the path we are on today. Jon was my friend and I already miss him.

I’m sure there were many times when Jon’s commitment to Penn-Mar kept him from his family, especially his wife Pam, who was so gracious in sharing Jon with us. All of all us at Penn-Mar are so grateful for the precious time he spent with us over the years. Our hearts go out to Jon’s family for their tremendous loss.

We are so honored that gifts in Jon’s memory are being directed to The Penn-Mar Foundation. His commitment and leadership to our organization did not die with him on the mountain. His immeasurable contributions in building bold futures for people with disabilities will be with us for generations to come.

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