Marshalltown JCPenney general manager receives Founder’s Award


Marshalltown JCPenney general manager Steven Pankratz has received the company’s Founder’s Award for outstanding accomplishments in 2018.

The award is given to those who “excel in the areas of financial performance, customer and client service and business expertise.”

“It’s a team effort,” Pankratz said. “That is what drives results. We want the store to be a destination — a customer service experience you can’t get with online shopping. You can create customer loyalty by creating a positive guest experience.”

A native of Hutchison, Kan., he has been with the company for a total of 23 years. He became manager of the Marshalltown store during the Black Friday shopping rush of 2018.

JCPenney has over 800 stores in the United States. A total of 80 of its store managers received the award. Andrea Hartman, general manager of Carroll’s JCPenney store, was the only other Iowa recipient of the Founder’s Award.

The Marshalltown store is the oldest continually operating Penney’s in Iowa.

“The 2018 Founder’s Awards recipients have played a key role in driving the JCPenney business, embodying our Warrior values of loyalty, passion, service and courage,” Kim Dowgielewicz, Midwest regional vice president for JCPenney said in a press release. “The Founder’s Award is the Company’s highest honor, recognizing leadership excellence. I’m proud of our talented group of associates who earned this special recognition, and look forward to another successful year in Iowa.”

Pankratz said he will physically get the award later in the month.

On April 8, 1916, JCPenney opened its Marshalltown store at 120-122 E. Main St. In 1949, it relocated to 119 W. Main St. — the current location of U.S. Bank and Trending Media.

JCPenney moved to its present-day location at the Marshalltown Mall in July 1977.


Contact Sara Jordan-Heintz at

641-753-6611 or



Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)