James Steffy Obituary, Death – James B. Steffy, a dedicated educator and accomplished musician, passed away peacefully on October 28 in York, PA, at the age of 89. Born in 1934 in Shillington, PA, to James and Helen Steffy, Jim pursued his passion for music, attending the Curtis Institute of Music as a trombonist. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from West Chester University and a Master of Education degree from Pennsylvania State University.
With a career spanning over 40 years in higher education, Jim made significant contributions to Susquehanna University for 26 years and later to Muhlenberg College for 17 years. Recognized for his outstanding service, both institutions bestowed upon him honorary doctoral degrees. At Susquehanna University, Jim held the position of Full Professor, chaired the Music Department for 12 years, and conducted the university marching and symphonic bands. He also took on various administrative roles, including acting Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dean of Continuing Education, and Dean of Academic Services.
Jim’s commitment to education extended beyond the classroom as he served as a guest conductor for high school and college festival bands. His leadership continued at Muhlenberg College, where he became Vice President for Planning and Administration, later serving as Interim President during the 2002-2003 academic year. Beyond his professional life, Jim shared his love for music with his family, spending summers at music camps in Maine and Massachusetts. He even directed Camp de Musique International in Switzerland in 1971, showcasing his passion for music on a global stage.
Jim is survived by his wife of 49 years, Nancy, his sister Sylvia, his children James, John, and Susan, stepsons Michael and Jeff, along with eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. His legacy lives on not only through his family but also through the countless students and colleagues whose lives he touched during his remarkable career in higher education.