In memory of alumnus James Strenski
James Bernard Strenski, Journalism ’52, passed away peacefully July 7, 2021, in Clearwater, FL. Jim was a loving husband, devoted father and grandfather, successful entrepreneur and generous philanthropist. His Catholic faith and commitment to helping others were unwavering.
Jim was born January 2, 1930, in Milwaukee, WI, the third child of Barbara and Joseph Strenski. After graduating from Marquette University in 1952 with his bachelors degree, he married Jane Wambach. They were married 64 years, and their love would last a lifetime.
After graduating from the U.S. Naval Officer Candidate School and serving in the Navy for four years, the Strenski’s moved to Wheaton, IL where they raised five children: Sue (Mike Splain); Teri, Journalism ’79 (David Moon); Kathy, Journalism ’82 (Steve Ruwe); John (Deniz); and Jim.
In 1962, Jim founded Public Communications, Inc. (PCI) in Chicago and later added offices in Tampa and Miami. Under Jim’s leadership PCI became one of the nation’s top 20 independent PR firms. The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) awarded Jim the Paul M. Lund Public Service Award for his volunteer civil rights work. Marquette University awarded Jim its Merit Award for Professional Achievement in 1984.
Jim was deeply committed to public service. In the Tampa area, he served on the board of directors of the Florida Orchestra and was chairman of the board 2004–2005. He was a member of the Outback Bowl Board of Directors from 1989–2003 and chairman of the public relations committee during that time. He was a board member of Concerned Citizens of Clearwater; a trustee and passionate fundraiser for Academy Prep Center of Tampa; and a member of the Bequest Society of Jesuit High School. He was also a member of the President’s Society Honor Roll for annual donations to Marquette University.
In addition to his five children Jim is survived by 12 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Jim was preceded in death by his wife, Jane (Wambach), sister Irene (Russell) and brother Fr. Joseph Strenski.
A memorial service will be held 11 am, October 16, 2021, at Jesuit High School (4701 N. Himes Avenue, Tampa, FL. 33614) followed by a reception. Memorial donations, in lieu of flowers, can be made to the Jim and Jane Strenski Scholarship Fund at Tampa Jesuit using the address above.