William John "(Dr. Bill)" Kowalski, PhD.
William John Kowalski, 78, of Erie, Pennsylvania passed away on Thursday, December, 31st 2020 with hospice care after an extended illness.
He was born in Kenmore, NY on April 4th 1942, the son of the late William J. Kowalski Sr. and Florence (Czamara) Kowalski.
Dr. Kowalski was recently retired from his private practice as a well-known and highly respected Clinical Psychologist practicing advanced techniques including Jungian and Gestalt therapy for over 40 years.
Bill attended undergraduate school at Canisius College in Buffalo, NY. He received a Master of Arts degree from St. Bonaventure University in Allegheny, NY., and his Doctorate degree from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, OH.
His first major position was at Cuyahoga Community College West, in Cleveland Ohio as a campus Psychologist. Prior to moving to Erie, he was employed as a staff Psychologist at the West Palm Beach Community Mental Health Center, in West Palm Beach, Florida. In 1974, he became Director of Youth Services, a department of Outpatient Mental Health, at Hamot Hospital (now UPMC Hamot). He worked extensively with the rape crises center and was coordinator of outpatient and inpatient mental health services for adults and children. For several years he appeared in TV program with June Smith at WQLN. In 1979 he began his private practice of clinical and consulting psychology in Erie.
Throughout his career Dr. Bill maintained his license in both Pennsylvania and Florida, was very active in public speaking, worked extensively with clergy in both states, and deeply believed in living a life of service. He worked with clergy individually in Erie and West Palm Beach, as well as at St. Mark’s Seminary in Erie and St. John Vianney Seminary in Boca Raton. He taught pastoral counseling courses via Case Western Reserve Department of Psychology, was the co-founder of Ecclesia Center, a psychological assistance program for clergy, and provided psychological screening services for Roman Catholic seminaries and ordination candidates Episcopal Diocese of Erie.
He was very involved in the Multiple Sclerosis Society and, since 1992, the American Red Cross in Erie. His Red Cross work started with the Hurricane Andrew devastation and included local assistance and other major hurricane relief, including provided Post Traumatic Stress Disorder therapy services to Red Cross volunteers and others directly affected by 9/11 and Katrina.
He helped and greatly impacted many lives in a positive way with great kindness, compassion, and insight.
A man big in stature as well as heart he was an avid gardener and a passionate photographer always photographing sunsets and nature. He was also a weather spotter, scuba diver, cyclist, and ham radio operator. He loved the Ocean, meditating, and spending time in nature, especially by the lake at Presque Isle. He also loved researching and writing about religion and psychology.
Bill maintained a very positive outlook on life both professionally and personally. His great sense of humor and positive outlook stayed strong through his adversities and health conditions. He took solace in his faith and in the beauty of nature, imbuing this positivity in his writings. He truly loved helping people and he deeply loved his family.
He is survived by his wife Janice Bucceri Fatica of Erie; son William J. Kowalski, III (Alexandra) of Canada, daughter Laura K. Kowalski of California, and son Patrick C. Kowalski (Asia) of California; and grandchildren McKinley Kowalski, Theodore and Ethan Hansen, and Kasia and Chloe Kowalski.
He was also a step-father to Austin Fatica (Marissa), Amelia Thompson, Frank Fatica, Stephen Fatica (Leyla Williams) and five step grandchildren, Will and Drew Thompson, Dylan, Lex, and Naomi Fatica all of Florida.
He is also survived by a brother James Kowalski and wife Joanne of Florida, as well as a sister, Mary Skorupa of Buffalo, NY and several nieces and nephews and many loving friends and extended family.
Friends are invited to attend a memorial service on Thursday, January 14, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Julia Church 638 Roslyn Ave, Erie Pa 16505. The service will be livestreamed and can be viewed at www.facebook.com/BurtonQuinnScott. Private burial will be in St. Stanislaus Cemetery in Cheektowaga, NY.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the American Red Cross 4961 Pittsburgh Ave, Erie, PA 16509.
Send condolences at www.burtonfuneralhome.com
Thursday, January 14th, 2021, 10:00 AM
St. Julia Catholic Church - 638 Roslyn Avenue Erie, PA 16505