About Our Donors: Mary M. and Bertil E. Lofstrom

Penn State Hazleton formally named its library the Mary M. and Bertil E. Lofstrom Library during a ceremony September 13, 2018.

The building was named in honor of longtime supporters Mary and Bert Lofstrom. It is the first time a Hazleton Campus building will carry the name of an alumnus.

Mary was born in Cobalt, Ontario, Canada. She earned a bachelor’s degree from St. Louis University and a master’s in nursing from Catholic University in Washington, D.C. She began a 26-year nursing career in the Air Force that culminated in the rank of colonel. During her service, she was a nursing administrator and military consultant to the Surgeon General for 14 years and a flight nurse for 11 years (10 years on overseas duty). After her passing, July 2, 2016, she was interred in Arlington National Cemetery.

Bert’s connection to Penn State Hazleton began in 1950 when he enrolled as a freshman. A native of Philadelphia, Bert moved to the Hazleton area with his mother when he was in his late teens. Bert completed his degree in commerce at University Park in 1954. While in college, he participated in the Air Force Reserve Officers’ Training Corps and served in the Air Force from 1954 to 1976, retiring as a colonel. While part of the Air Force, he earned a master’s degree from Michigan State University in 1964. 

The Lofstroms met while serving in the Air Force and celebrated their 50th anniversary prior to Mary’s passing. After they retired from the Air Force, they settled in Alexandria, Virginia, where Bert worked as a financial planner and was the founding partner of LaborFinders, a labor sourcing service. They retired to Vero Beach, Florida, in 1989.

Through the years, the couple donated artwork and made monetary gifts, which will be used to help Penn State students pursue business degrees. For their generosity to Penn State, they were inducted as members of the Mount Nittany Society at University Park and the Highacres Society at Penn State Hazleton.