Key figure in fiscal recovery of Columbia Association dies Krawczak slashed debt in his 9-year tenure


Robert R. Krawczak, the Columbia Association's chief financial officer, died suddenly early yesterday at his home in Columbia's Clary's Forest neighborhood. He was 50.

Doctors at Howard County General Hospital could not immediately determine the cause of death. A state medical examiner was making plans yesterday to perform an autopsy.

Mr. Krawczak had been the Columbia Association's chief financial officer since March 1986. During his nine-year tenure, he oversaw the nonprofit homeowners association's transition from a time of high budget deficits to one of increasing prosperity.

"Bob Krawczak is a key reason why the Columbia Association is in such solid financial condition today," said Padraic Kennedy, president of the association. "He will truly be missed by us all."

Before Mr. Krawczak arrived, the association, which oversees Columbia's facilities and parkland, was spending more than it was receiving in fees and owed nearly $29 million because of deficits over the years. He put the association on a deficit diet and cut that debt to $15.5 million as of this year.

Mr. Kennedy said Mr. Krawczak "had a genius for anything financial," and said his work was an important reason why Moody's Investors Service last year upgraded the association's credit rating from "A" to "A1."

In the early 1980s, Mr. Krawczak, a native of the Detroit area, was senior vice president and chief financial officer of a nonprofit corporation that redeveloped downtown Harrisburg, Pa. Before that, he held positions at Chase Manhattan Bank in New York City, including those of assistant treasurer and accounting manager.

An avid golfer, he oversaw the financing of the Fairway Hills Golf Course in the Village of Dorsey's Search.

He also was a member of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Columbia and former treasurer of Cub Scout Pack 720 in Clary's Forest.

Mr. Krawczak is survived by his wife of 15 years, Ellen Krawczak; a 14-year-old son, Jeffrey, and a 12-year-old daughter, Jennifer. He also is survived by his father, Edward Krawczak of Sun City West, Ariz., and a brother, Laurence Krawczak of Piffin, Ohio.

Funeral arrangements were not confirmed yesterday.

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