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Remembering Industry Veteran Ken Kachtik

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Ken Kachtik

On October 11, Ken Kachtik, a beloved and valued industry veteran, passed away in Abilene, Texas.

Kachtik is responsible for the creation, development and operation of industry iconic facilities such as Corpus Christi Athletic Club, the Elmwood Fitness Center, and e-Fitness and Wellness in Biloxi, Mississippi. The crown jewel in his career according to Marvin Gresse, the general manager of Stone Creek Club & Spa and friend, was the opening, expansion and premiere operation of Elmwood Fitness Center — which later become the Ochsner Fitness Center.

“Ken shepherded Elmwood Fitness through its development and opening, many expansions, industry leading initiatives and programs such as medical fitness, social memberships and being integrated heavily into the community,” said Gresse. “Above all of the facility accomplishments, Ken is most known and loved for his impact on fitness professionals who worked for him. Whether a summer job for a high school or college student or career path for a lifetime, Ken’s tutelage and caring spirit was instilled in thousands of employees over the years.”

In talking with industry veterans who grew up under Kachtik’s direction, Gresse said they all stated they owe their start and growth to the beloved leader. This includes Larry Conner, Marvin Gresse, Damon Kremer, Larry Welch, Lisa Gorsline and many others.

“I am forever thankful for the leadership, mentorship, friendship and caring spirit Ken shared with me and so many other lifelong friends of mine in the industry,” said Gresse. “Ken Kachtik will be greatly missed in his legacy and his impact will live on for years in those staff and members he touched.”

During the IHRSA conference, Gresse spoke with many former employees and members of Kachtik and they all expressed extreme gratitude, appreciation and sadness in learning of his passing. The countless stories of lives he has impacted and fitness center careers he has spawned are a true tribute to his lasting legacy.

Kachtik’s wife Sue and his entire family will be in our thoughts and prayers. 

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Taylor Brown

Taylor Brown is the assistant editor for Club Solutions Magazine. She can be reached at taylor@peakemedia.com

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