Replacement of Pt-based oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) catalysts with non-precious metal catalysts (NPMCs) such as Fe/N/C is one of the most important issues in the commercialization of proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). Despite numerous studies on Fe/N/C catalysts, a fundamental study on the development of a versatile strategy is still required for tuning the kinetic activity of a single Fe-N-4 site. Herein, we report a new and intuitive design strategy for tuning and enhancing the kinetic activity of a single Fe-N-4 site by controlling electron-withdrawing/donating properties of a carbon plane with the incorporation of sulfur functionalities. The effect of electron-withdrawing/donating functionalities was elucidated by experimentation and theoretical calculations. Finally, the introduction of an oxidized sulfur functionality decreases the d-band center of iron by withdrawing electrons, thereby facilitating ORR at the Fe-N-4 site by lowering the intermediate adsorption energy. Furthermore, this strategy can enhance ORR. activity without a decrease in the stability of the catalyst. This simple and straightforward approach can be a cornerstone to develop optimum NPMCs for application in the cathodes of PEMFCs.