New hires and promotions

— Jocelyn Myers of Lilly has become an independent consultant with Tastefully Simple Inc., a national direct sales company featuring more than 60 foods.

Myers offers food samples at home taste-testing parties, along with ideas for everyday meals, recipes and serving suggestions.

— Dr. Amit Nanavati has joined Cardiology Associates of Altoona, LLP.

Nanavati recently completed an Interventional Cardiology and Peripheral Fellowship at the University of Florida where he received advanced training in coronary and peripheral vascular disease intervention.

Awards and honors

— Brian H. Lehman, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Reliance Bank has been elected to the Pennsylvania Bankers Association board of directors.

Lehman, who has been CFO of Reliance Bank since 2002, will serve a two-year term beginning July 1.

— John Davidhizar of Altoona, a sales associate with Coldwell Banker Town and Country Real Estate, has been named as part of the 2013 International President’s Circle.

This membership is awarded to the top 6 percent of all sales associates/representatives worldwide in the Coldwell Banker System.

Course completions and certifications

— Dr. James Hayden, a member of the medical staff of J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital in Huntingdon, recently was recognized as a Diplomate of the American Board of Family Medicine with his recertification.

To achieve recertification by the ABFM, Hayden was required to verify the completion of continuing medical education each year; possess a full and unrestricted license to practice medicine in the United States; and successfully complete several assessments during a 10- year period.

He also was required to pass an examination, which covered the disciplines of family medicine, patient safety, medical ethics and new advances in the medical field.


— Jeffery Demarest, professor emeritus of biology, and Judy Katz, professor emerita of English, have retired from Juniata College.

Demarest joined the Juniata faculty in 1994 and was chairman of the biology department from 1994 to 2004. His research has focused on cell biology and the physiology of osmoregulation and electroreception in fish. He also studied epithelial transport in the renal and gastrointestinal systems.

Katz came to Juniata in 1988 and was appointed to the full-time faculty in 1991.

She has been instrumental in acting as an advocate at the college for women’s programs. She created the college’s first “Women in Literature” course, and in 1994 established “Unlock Your Voice,” a program of readings from women’s literature. This celebrated program, along with “Lift Ev’ry Voice,” a program centering on readings from African-American literature, is among the most popular public programs at the college.

Submissions for Workplace can be sent to Walt Frank at Please include the name of the individual, his/her present address, original hometown and high school and college from where he/she graduated, and information about the person’s accomplishment.


New hires and promotions

— Dr. Jaspreet Singh Bains has joined the Primary Health Network’s Altoona Behavioral Health to offer adult psychiatry services.

In addition to adult psychiatry, Bains also specializes in addiction therapy.

— Ray Kennedy has been promoted by Amtran to the position of director of transportation.

In his 37 years at Amtran, Kennedy, an Altoona native, has been a bus driver, a union officer and a driver/trainer. He was promoted to transportation supervisor nine years ago, and to assistant director of transportation last year.

— Several employees of Saint Francis University, Loretto, have been promoted recently. They are:

— Marian Bender of Ebensburg has been promoted from human resources manager to director of human resources.

— Michael Blaisdell of South Fork has been promoted from network administrator to director of network services in the information technology department.

— Christopher Lytle of Nanty Glo has been promoted from corporal to sergeant in the University Police Services at Saint Francis University.

— Monica Shedlock of Nanty Glo has been promoted from research analyst/organizational development assistant to assistant director of human resource and institutional research.

— Sherri Toth of Ebensburg has been promoted from graduate education programs coordinator to associate director of graduate education programs.

— Rob Young of Hollidaysburg has been promoted from director of government relations of grants and foundations to assistant vice president of government relations, grants and foundations in the advancement office.

— Steven Marsh of Johnstown has joined Catanese Group, Johnstown, as an associate accountant.

Marsh attends the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown and is expected to receive a bachelor’s degree in accounting in April.

Course completions and certifications

— Cynthia Wood, senior instructor of business administration, and Lee Ann De Reus, associate professor of human development and family studies and women’s studies at Penn State Altoona, recently completed a certificate program in social entrepreneurship through the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

To receive their certification, Wood and De Reus completed eight modules over an eight-month period at three separate conferences including the Irish Impact Social Entrepreneurship Conference at Notre Dame, the USASBE annual conference in Fort Worth, Texas, and the Midwest Symposium on Social Entrepreneurship at the Kauffman Foundation in Kansas City.


— Tulay Girard, associate professor of marketing at Penn State Altoona, co-authored and presented with her student research assistant, Kristina Snyder, a pedagogical paper at the June 2014 Higher Education Teaching and Learning conference in Anchorage, Alaska.

“Enhancing Student Learning With a Social Media Community Development Project in Higher Education” introduces a social media-marketing project and describes the process undertaken in a social media-marketing course taught by Girard.

The abstract, also co-authored with Mark Lennon, assistant professor at Penn State Altoona, has been published in the 2014 HETL conference proceedings.

Submissions for Workplace can be sent to Walt Frank at Please include the name of the individual, his/her present address, original hometown and high school and college from where he/she graduated, and information about the person’s accomplishment.


New hires and promotions

— Carl T. Gingrich of Altoona was recently hired as a property/casualty producer at the Warren A. Gingrich Agency.

Gingrich, a 2008 graduate of Altoona Area High School and a 2012 graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a bachelor’s degree in marketing, is a third-generation agent working for the family business.

— Aurora Ressler of Altoona was recently promoted to manager of the health information management department at UPMC Altoona.

As manager, she plans, organizes, directs and controls workflow throughout the department, managing the clerical, medical records assistants, atlas and tumor Registry staff. She also ensures that medical records are prepared and scanned into the electronic medical record in a timely manner and that chart completion of the medical record is accomplished within the mandatory guidelines.

— Nicole Fedeli Turiano of Hollidaysburg has been promoted by Home Nursing Agency to director of public policy and government relations for UPMC Community Provider Services division and will respond to legislation impacting post-acute service delivery and payment.

— Fedeli Turiano, who holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Penn State, previously served as director of legislative affairs and corporate communications for Home Nursing Agency.

Awards and honors

— Verna Blough, 95, of Martinsburg has been named Salute to Senior Service Program Winner by Home Instead Senior Care.

Blough volunteers monthly at Homewood at Martinsburg, where she resides, St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church in Martinsburg and Arbutus Park Retirement Community in Johnstown.

— Dennie Huber of Altoona, a master balloon artist and magician, was recognized with the Dillman Award during the Children’s Miracle Network at Geisinger Celebration Weekend event.

The Dillman Award was created in 1999 as an award to be given to an outstanding volunteer for Children’s Miracle Network in the Johnstown-Altoona region. Huber has been involved with Children’s Miracle Network for the last 20 years and has volunteered his magic and balloon-twisting services for several Children’s Miracle Network fund-raising events.

— Lottie Ebersole of Nason Hospital, Roaring Spring, was one of 524 CCRNs honored this year by the AACN Certification Corp. and the American Association of Critical Care Nurses for 30 years of continuous certification.

CCRN certification is one of the most advanced professional credentials that can be achieved by a nurse in the field of acute and critical care.

Course completions and certifications

— Rhonda Trexler of Martinsburg, an education and staff development specialist at Home Nursing Agency, recently earned a Master of Science degree in Nursing from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Trexler also holds a BS in nursing from Penn State University and has been with the Agency since 1993.

Submissions for Workplace can be sent to Walt Frank at Please include the name of the individual, his/her present address, original hometown and high school and college from where he/she graduated, and information about the person’s accomplishment.


New hires and promotions

— Daniel E. Hooper has been named vice president and regional manager at First Commonwealth Bank.

Hooper, who comes to First Commonwealth from PNC Bank, where he served as vice president of business banking, will oversee 10 First Commonwealth Bank community offices located throughout the Altoona region. He will be responsible for developing and strengthening client relationships while growing the company’s market share in Altoona.

Awards and honors

— Jennifer Perrin of Altoona, diabetes coordinator in the Center for Clinical Resources, was recently named the winner of the 2014 Pinnacle Award. It honors the Western Maryland Health System’s Employee of the Year and is presented annually to one of the 12 monthly Values in Action Award winners during the past year.

An employee since 2001, Perrin is a 1996 graduate of Altoona Area High School and a 2000 graduate of Penn State with a bachelor’s degree in nutrition. She is the daughter of Scott and Sandra Hoover of Altoona.

— Vienna Rice, activities director at Colonial Courtyard at Tyrone, has been named a 2014 Hero Award recipient by the Assisted Living Federation of America.

The ALFA Hero Awards honor individuals throughout the country who serve older adults in senior living communities. Rice was among five ALFA Hero Award recipients this year, with the others coming from Florida, Illinois, Michigan and Texas.

— Richard M. Serbin, an Altoona attorney, has again been selected by his peers as a 2014 Pennsylvania Super Lawyer, a designation of achievement given to the top 5 percent of Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers.

Serbin specializes in sexual abuse cases, serious personal injury claims and representing individuals victimized by insurance companies acting in bad faith.

— Mark McKellop, Neil Pelkey, James Tuten, Wade Roberts and John Wright, members of the Juniata College faculty, have received promotions.

McKellop, associate professor of psychology, was promoted to full professor; Pelkey, associate professor of environmental science, was promoted to full professor; and Tuten, associate professor of history, was promoted to full professor.

Roberts, assistant professor of philosophy, was promoted to associate professor, and Wright, assistant professor of information technology and computer science, was promoted to associate professor.

— Megan Jones of Baltimore, Md., vice president of Channel Alliances for Spikes Security Inc., Campbell, Calif., has been named to the 2014 CRN Women of the Channel under the sub category “Up-And-Comers.”

The annual list highlights the accomplishments of female executives within vendor, distribution and solution provider organizations, and the impact they are having on the advancement of the IT channel industry.

Jones, a 2004 graduate of Altoona Area High School and a 2008 graduate of Penn State, is the daughter of Robin Jones of Altoona.

Course completions and certifications

— Robin de Koning has earned a Master of Science degree in nursing through Regis University’s graduate program.

De Koning, a full-time flight nurse with Geisinger Life Flight, is certified in three specialties holding national certifications. She also works on the IV team at UPMC Altoona and is an Independent Legal Nurse Consultant.

Submissions for Workplace can be sent to Walt Frank at Please include the name of the individual, his/her present address, original hometown and high school and college from where he/she graduated, and information about the person’s accomplishment.


New hires and promotions

— Dr. David Green has been granted privileges on the UPMC Altoona medical staff in the Medicine/ Critical Care Medicine Department.

Green, who practices with Pittsburgh Critical Care Associates, is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine with additional training and board-certification in Pulmonary Disease and Critical Care Medicine.

— Dan Finelli, Michael Richardson and Chris Metzger have joined Curry Supply Co.

Finelli joined the company as CAD designer. As a part of the engineering department, he will design and modify product configurations using 3D modeling software. He joins Curry Supply with prior CAD/CAM experience as well as having been a machinist for 14 years.

Richardson joined Curry Supply as a sales engineer. As an intermediary between the sales and engineering departments, Richardson will suggest product design changes and improvements, then follow the engineering process to completion.

Metzger joined Curry Supply as a product specialist. In this newly created role, he will promote the parts and service capabilities of the company to customers and prospects as part of the “Curry Care” product support program.

Metzger rejoins Curry Supply, having been with the company from 2008-11.

Awards and honors

— James Garver of Martinsburg, an attorney at the law firm of Edgar Snyder & Associates, has been selected to the 2014 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers list. Only five percent of attorneys in the state receive this honor.

Garver, who earned a law degree from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, was also voted for inclusion in the 2013 and 2014 editions of The Best Lawyers in America.

— Allen Melley of Bellwood has been named a winner of the Star of Excellence Award, PennDOT’s highest recognition.

The Star of Excellence award is given to employees who set an example for their colleagues through their leadership and dedication to providing exceptional service.

Melley, a senior civil engineer supervisor, was one of the lead roadway project managers for the P3 Initiative (Public, Private Partnership).

— D. Stephen Martz of Hollidaysburg, who was recently elected to a one-year term on F.N.B. Corp.’s board of directors, was recognized for serving 50 or more years in the banking industry at the Pennsylvania Bankers Association Annual Meeting in Naples, Fla.

Martz has been a director of F.N.B. Corp. since 2008. In addition to spending more than 44 years in multiple director and executive roles with banks and financial institutions, he also serves as chairman of the board of Nason Hospital in Roaring Spring and is active in leadership positions with Lycoming College, Wald Co. Inc. and the Hollidaysburg Planning Commission.

Course completions and certifications

— Dr. Lawrence S. Levinson has been certified as a medical examiner for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration after successful completion of the required training and testing concerning the federal physical qualifications and standards for truck and bus drivers.

Levinson is the medical director of the Tipton Medical and Diagnostic Center.

— Dr. Amy Metzger, staff psychiatrist on the Inpatient Behavioral Health Unit at UPMC Altoona, recently passed the maintenance of certification examination given by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology Inc. Metzger has been a diplomate in the specialty of psychiatry since June 2004.

Submissions for Workplace can be sent to Walt Frank at