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2013 Distinguished Alumni Award for Service —Frank Fendorf
UCM President Chuck Ambrose, left, and UCM Alumni Association Board President Jennifer Maijala '01 presented the 2013 UCM Alumni Distinguished Award for Service to Frank Fendorf.
"Just like you can read a newspaper, I can read a musical score and determine what it sounds like," said Frank Fendorf about his passion for music. Fendorf credits UCM for shaping him into the person he wanted to be. "My goal was to receive an education that would equip me to make a worthwhile contribution to society, UCM gave me that opportunity. The excellent faculty taught me the values necessary to succeed in my chosen profession."
Fendorf was presented the UCM Alumni Distingiushed Award for Service at a formal dinner Oct. 25, 2013, on the UCM campus in Warrensburg.
As a student at UCM, Fendorf was an active member in band, orchestra, choir, Sigma Phi Epsilon and student government. He graduated from UCM in 1947 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Education and became the second person ever to receive the Charno Award, an award presented annually to the top male and female members of the senior class at UCM.
Starting his career, Fendorf became the band director at Warrensburg High School for three years. In 1950, where he spent the next 15 years, he accepted the title as public school music supervisor and director of bands in Chillicothe, Mo. "Working with students and conducting bands has always been a great pleasure," said Fendorf. In 1965 he accepted a position as partner for the firm Wingert-Jones Music Inc. where he worked for over 35 years. His time dedicated to the firm helped the company become one of the largest retailers of printed music and publishers of music. In 2003 he retired as vice president, a title he prestigiously earned.
Soon after retirement Fendorf began to focus his talents in a different direction, director of the Overland Park Civic Band. As director he led the 65-member band through a series of concerts each summer along with an annual holiday concert.
Fendorf has always been connected to UCM throughout the years. "Frank represents his alma mater with dignity. He contributes most of his successes to UCM which has supported him along the way," said Bob Foster, a friend of Fendorf. He believes in giving back to UCM, especially by helping students. He and his family have established two scholarships: the Frank and Barbara Endowed Scholarship in Music and the Marching Mules Endowed Scholarship.
Today, Fendorf is the music director at St. Thomas Episcopal Church and does consultation for community musical organizations in Overland Park.