ECSE Mourns the Passing of Long Time ECSE Staff Steve Dombrowski

Posted November 18, 2021
Steve Dombrowski

The ECSE community mourns the long time ECSE technical staff member Steve Dombrowski, who passed away on November 11, 2021.  The obituary can be found here:

Steve was with Rensselaer and ECSE for 42 years. He was instrumental in creating and maintaining an outstanding laboratory learning environment for students and faculty. During the pandemic, Steve was critical to the successful deployment of the new initiative of outfitting all incoming ECSE students with ADAM 1000 Active Learning Modules and accessory boards to enable them to conduct labs and learn remotely.  Steve has been the long time advisor for the RPI Amateur Radio Club W2SZ.


ECSE community is devastated by the loss, and shared their remembrances of Steve:

Joe Chow: “Steve was instrumental in developing the computer lab (both rooms) on the 6th floor (back in the days when I was the acting dept head). I taught in those labs often, and Steve would always make sure that everything was right. He helped with my summer camp programs for the last 8 years.  In those rooms you can still see all the circuit boards and other things Steve built for the computer courses.” 

Mike Wozny: “I am very sad to receive this bad news.  I remember talking to Steve when I retired.  He said to me, 'I am not ready to retire.  I love my job.'" 

Randolph Franklin: “Steve was such a nice guy.  Over four decades, his support has helped thousands of students become engineers.   We're all better off because of him.”

Luigi Vanfretti: “I am so sad, he was so kind to me and such a great person to work with. He was such an encyclopedia of knowledge and a craftsman like no other I’ve met. I will miss him, it was so nice to have coffee with him and learn about all the different things he setup for teaching.  He taught me so much on how to develop my own labs, and he took care of Maintenance and distributing the hardware to the students, even keeping track of the returns.”

Shayla Sawyer: “I'm still in shock.  Still speechless.  I know this, I am reflecting on the value of consistency and service ever since.  You simply can't build and dream and dare without foundations like this, people like this, around to keep things stable.  Gratitude and sadness.”

Rama Hamarneh: “Steve was a smiling face every morning, he went out of his way to see how you were doing and always stopped to hear about your day. He went above and beyond for his fellow staff members, making sure we felt supported. He will be dearly missed.”

Kelley Kritz: "Steve always made me feel welcomed. Every time he said hello and asked how I was doing as we passed each other in the hallway, I could tell he was sincere and genuinely interested in how I was doing. He was by far one of the sweetest people I've met."

Agung Julius: "Steve was always friendly and ready to help. He was literally the first person who welcome me when I joined RPI in December 2008 after I got my office key from the Carol Wagar (who was then the department secretary). Then, he told me that there was a holiday reception (of which I did not know) and took me there. That image stuck with me. He was always kind and caring. When you had a conversation with him, he’d genuinely ask how you are doing. When you needed his help, he was always there. I miss him for the good person and the good colleague he was."

Bill Mnich: "I mourn the loss of Steve and have 23 years of wonderful memories and experiences. Together with Jerry and me, we were the true 3 Amigos. We supported one another and kept each other in a positive state. That in itself means everything and we all loved working together at RPI. I will miss my Amigos greatly and never forget them. Rest in peace my brothers."