New hires and promotions

— Sean Makowiecki of Cresson has been hired as UPMC Altoona’s Patient Access manager.

In his position, Makowiecki, a 2003 graduate of Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic High School and a 2008 graduate of Mount Aloysius College, supervises 60 employees and is responsible for establishing and maintaining an accurate, efficient, consistent and patient-centered admission and registration process.

— Robert Doyle has been named as Director of Supply Chain Management at Curry Supply Co.

In this newly created position, Doyle will be responsible for streamlining the “procure to pay” process for all raw materials, services, components and ancillary items purchased. He will establish collective purchasing arrangements with suppliers to acquire top quality products as well as ensure favorable service, delivery and costs.

— Dr. Gregor Thebaud, a sports medicine physician, has joined the medical staff of J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital in Huntingdon.

Along with his family practice certification, Thebaud is specially trained to treat a variety of patients including: athletes of all ages, weekend warriors hoping to improve their athletic performance and patients with disabilities caused by injury who hope to regain mobility and increase their capabilities.

— Rachel C. Dubois has joined Mutual Benefit Group as billing manager.

DuBois, a graduate of Juniata College, will manage the people and processes associated with the collection and deposit of all money, oversee implementation of software changes to accounts receivable, lead billing initiatives and drive-through changes or improvements.

— Deborah Krise of Loretto has been hired as vice president, business development officer, for Marion Center Bank.

Krise, a graduate of Penn State, has 29 years of banking experience, with 23 of those years centered in commercial lending and business banking.

She is the daughter of Don and Irma Youngkin of Coalport.

— Dr. Margaret Hallahan, a hospitalist, has joined the medical staff at J.C. Blair Memorial Hospital in Huntingdon.

Hallahan, a Huntingdon native, cares for patients who have been admitted to J.C. Blair. She is specially trained in hospital medicine and remains current on new hospital-based technology.

— Diane Stuart has been hired as a mortgage loan originator by First Commonwealth Mortgage, a division of First Commonwealth Bank.

Stuart, who previously served as a mortgage loan originator for M&T Bank, will serve the Johnstown and Somerset markets and is responsible for informing and educating consumers about loan solutions and developing new client relationships.

Awards and honors

— Bill Anderson of Altoona will be one of six people to receive a Hero of Conservation Award Sept. 17 in Washington, D.C.

The awards, hosted by Field & Stream magazine, celebrate every day heroes who are leading the charge of change with their passion and dedication to protecting fish and wildlife habitat across the country.

Anderson is recognized for leading the Little Juniata River Association in a full-scale habitat improvement and restoration project of the namesake river.

Submissions for Workplace can be sent to Walt Frank at


New hires and promotions

— Dr. Elliott Bilofsky has joined the UPMC Altoona medical staff in the Department of Specialized Surgery’s clinical service of otorhinolaryngology (ear, nose, and throat).

Bilofsky, who received a medical degree from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, is board-certified by the American Osteopathic Board of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Facial Plastic Surgery.

— Dr. Brittany Barker recently joined UPMC Altoona’s medical staff in the Department of Family Medicine with obstetrical and newborn privileges.

Barker, a 2014 graduate of the Altoona Family Physicians Residency program, has joined Altoona Family Physicians’ Family Centered OB/GYN practice in Altoona.

— Dr. Amit Nanavati recently joined the UPMC Altoona medical staff in the Department of Medicine, clinical service of cardiology.

Nanavati, who is affiliated with Cardiology Associates of Altoona, is certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine in cardiovascular disease.

— Dr. Michael Sabatini has joined Cardiology Associates of Altoona, LLP.

Sabatini, who specializes in coronary and peripheral vascular disease intervention, recently completed an Interventional Cardiology and Peripheral Fellowship at West Penn Allegheny Health System.

— Denise J. Lear of Altoona has joined P. Joseph Lehman Inc., Consulting Engineers, Hollidaysburg, as an accountant.

Previously, Lear was accounting manager for an architecture firm in Altoona.

— Ryan P. Murphy of Altoona has joined P. Joseph Lehman Inc. Consulting Engineers, Hollidaysburg.

Murphy previously worked for the City of Altoona as an engineering technician and completed three summer internships at PennDOT.

Awards and honors

— Merlann Malloy of Patton, a registered nurse at UPMC Altoona Trauma Service, received the 2014 Rita Celmer Award from the Pennsylvania Emergency Nurses Association.

The award is presented annually to the emergency nurse who demonstrates commitment, enthusiasm, professionalism and dedication to emergency nursing and the PAENA.

— Mark Miller, assistant vice president and office manager at First Commonwealth Bank’s Ebensburg branch, was recently presented with the Spirit of the Community Service Award by the bank.

The award is presented annually to an employee who makes a significant contribution to the community in which he or she lives and works. For decades, Miller has dedicated his time to several local community groups, including Habitat for Humanity of Cambria County, the Rotary Club of Ebensburg and United Way.

— Pamela Steiner, Marvin Murray and Susan Barton, Altoona Area School District teachers, received Educator CARE Awards during the 2013-14 school year.

These awards are presented annually to an elementary teacher, a secondary teacher and a curriculum specialist who have demonstrated commitment, achievement, responsibility and excellence in the classroom.

Steiner, a teacher at Juniata Elementary School, received the elementary teacher CARE Award. She has been part of the instructional staff in the district for 12 years.

Murray, who teaches at Altoona Area High School, received the secondary teacher CARE Award. He joined the AASD instructional staff in 1986.

Barton, who received the Curriculum Specialist CARE Award, has been a part of the AASD instructional staff since 1981, serving in a variety of different special education settings.

Course completions and certifications

— Magisterial District Judge Fred B. Miller has been reappointed to serve another term as a member of the Minor Judiciary Education Board by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

The board is charged with the responsibility of instructing and certifying individuals wishing to become magisterial district judges or arraignment court magistrates and approves the curriculum, appoints and evaluates instructors, establishes course content, reviews all tests and issues certificates to successful program participants.

— Dr. Arthur J. DeMarsico of UPMC Altoona – Altoona Heart & Vascular Institute, received his continuous certification in vascular surgery by the American Osteopathic Board of Surgery through September 2024.

The American Osteopathic Association follows the principle that “certification should be a continuous, lifelong process” to ensure that physicians maintain current standards and demonstrate competency in their fields.


— Bonnie Sultage of Tyrone, continuous performance improvement coordinator in systems improvement at UPMC Altoona, has retired with 45 years of service.

She was hired as an LPN on the 5E nursing unit of Altoona Hospital in April 1969. She also worked on 3A and the coronary care unit until 1971. She transferred to the health information management department and worked as a historian, coder and atlas abstractor until 2000. Sultage then moved to her current position in the medical staff office.


— Frank Burtnett, a Hollidaysburg native, has written a book titled “Career Errors: Straight Talk about the Steps and Missteps of Career Development.”

The book, which examines the career development encounters that people experience across their life-span, was released in August by Rowman and Littlefield.

Submissions for Workplace can be sent to Walt Frank at


New hires and promotions

— Dr. Hanan Morcos has joined Central Pa. Cardiology & Vascular Center of Altoona and Everett.

Morcos attended Ross University School of Medicine, Dominica, West Indies, with a special interest in electrophysiology.

Morcos’ residency and fellowship include St. Vincent’s Catholic Medical Centers of New York, internal medicine; Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, critical care medicine; SUNY-Health Medical Center, Brooklyn, N.Y.; University of Nebraska Medical Center, cardiovascular disease medicine; and a clinical cardiac electrophysiology fellowship.

Course completions and certifications

— Maura Belinda of Alexandria, Brittany Hoover of Tipton and Ashley Vandevander of Bellwood were among recent graduates from the UPMC Altoona School of Medical Technology/ Medical Laboratory Science.

Belinda, the daughter of Stan and Lori Belinda, graduated from Saint Francis University with a major in medical technology. She received the “Most Outstanding Student” award for the Class of 2014.

Hoover is the wife of Tyler Hoover and the daughter of Wayne and Sherry Carper of Tipton. She graduated from Penn State Altoona with a bachelor’s degree in biology in 2011.

Vandevander, who received an Academic Achievement Award, is the daughter of Scott and Janice Collins of Connellsville. She graduated from Penn State University with a bachelor’s degree in animal bioscience in 2009.

— Ken Swanson of Swanson Tax Service, Tyrone, is now a notary signing agent. He has been certified by the National Notary Association.

To become certified, Swanson was tested on knowledge of loan documents and best practices outlined in the Code of Conduct.

Conferences and seminars

— Michael Lamb, certified government financial manager at Wessel & Co., Johnstown, recently spoke at the annual Local Government Conference in conjunction with Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

He addressed “Intro to Government Auditing,” and issues confronting local government auditors.

— Todd Erdley, CEO and president of Videon, State College, will be a plenary panelist at the Council of State Governments – Eastern Regional Conference’s 54th annual Meeting and Regional Policy Forum.

On the panel, Erdley will serve as the voice of the business community. As founder and leader of Videon, he has first-hand knowledge about starting and growing a successful company.

— Doug Stoehr, an Altoona attorney, recently spoke at a Pennsylvania Bar Institute continuing legal education seminar in Mechanicsburg, which concerned fundamentals of auto litigation.

Stoehr lectured on the subject “Proving Your Case” and covered settlement techniques such as focus groups and the presentation of evidence by electronic media.

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. Christopher Hughes, former chief resident of Conemaugh Memorial’s Emergency Medicine program, is returning to Conemaugh to continue his career in emergency medicine.

Hughes, a graduate of Freed-Hardeman University in Henderson, Tenn., and of the Edward Via Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine in Blacksburg, Va., most recently worked at ER-One, St. Francis Medical Center in Virginia.

— Dr. Richard Nahouraii, a trauma/critical care surgeon, has joined Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center’s Level One Regional Resource Trauma Center.

Nahouraii, who is board certified in surgery and surgical critical care, most recently served as director of surgical intensive care at Forbes Regional Hospital, a member of the Allegheny Health Network, where he also practiced as a trauma/acute care surgeon.

— Dr. Wesley Schrock has joined the team at Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center’s Interventional Radiology department.

Board certified in diagnostic radiology, Schrock recently completed a fellowship in Vascular and Interventional Radiology at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, N.H.

— Paul Seymour has been named as artistic director at Cresson Lake Playhouse.

Seymour brings 30 years of experience as a music teacher, choral director and organizational leader. He has directed and produced Central Cambria High School’s musicals for the past 11 years. He was first involved with CLP in 1986, performing along with his wife, Cathy, in Shenandoah under the direction of John Alexander.

— Dr. John Ashurst, an emergency medicine physician, has accepted a position with Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center to serve as research director and core faculty for Conemaugh Memorial’s Emergency Medicine Residency program.

Ashurst, a graduate of Northern Cambria High School and Juniata College, most recently served on the emergency medicine clinical faculty at Sacred Heart Hospital in Allentown.

As research director for the Emergency Medicine Residency, Ashurst will help residents develop clinical research.

Awards and honors

— Alice Sturm, a registered nurse in Home Based Primary Care, was recently selected as Van Zandt VA Medical Center’s recipient of the Secretary’s Hands and Heart Award.

The award recognizes Sturm as a compassionate individual whose dedication to veterans is marked by the highest standards in patient care.

Course completions and certifications

— Andrea R. Young, public affairs officer for the Van Zandt VA Medical Center, recently completed training offered by the Center for Domestic Preparedness, in Anniston, Ala.

The CDP is operated by the United States Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency and is the only federally-chartered Weapons of Mass Destruction training facility in the nation.

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. Robyn Kratenstein a recent graduate of Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center’s Emergency Medicine Residency, has accepted a full-time attending physician position at Conemaugh Memorial.

Kratenstein received a double major in biology and elementary education at Salisbury University before attending the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine. During her emergency medicine residency at Conemaugh Memorial, Kratenstein served as chief resident and also as a premedical mentor and instructor for skills day.

Awards and honors

— Sean McLanahan, CEO and sixth-generation family owner of McLanahan Corp., Hollidaysburg, has been awarded the Paul I. Detwiler III Achievement Award from Junior Achievement of Western Pennsylvania.

The award recognizes individuals from Pennsylvania’s Alleghenies region who have made significant contributions to the social, economic, educational and cultural development of the region.

McLanahan was recently appointed to the board of directors of Junior Achievement of Blair County.

Course completions and certifications

— Six Family Medicine residents and three osteopathic interns recently comprised the 2014 graduation class of The Altoona Family Physicians Residency.

They are:

— Dr. Brittany Barker, a graduate of West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine, Lewisburg, W.Va., who joins Altoona Family Physicians Family Centered OB/GYN.

— Dr. Amanda Cattoi, who received a medical degree from the Penn State Milton S. Hershey College of Medicine and will join Mainline Medical Associates.

— Dr. Joseph Hines, a graduate of Penn State Milton S. Hershey College of Medicine, will receive fellowship training in hospice/ palliative care at UPMC Altoona.

— Dr. Mathew Luthman, who received a degree from the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine, Lewisburg, W.Va., will practice as a general medical officer in the U.S. Air Force, based at Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark.

— Dr. Rebecca McConnell will continue her residency at the University of Michigan in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation.

— Dr. Noah Schmuckler, who received a degree from Temple University School of Medicine, Philadelphia, will graduate in October. He is undecided on his plans.

— Dr. Jenna Stokes, a graduate of Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, will join Blair Medical Associates in the Hollidaysburg and Bellwood offices.

— Dr. Christine Wanjeri-Hasen will graduate in August and plans to join a health care facility in eastern Pennsylvania or Maryland.

— Dr. Zachary Zanfes, a graduate of Lincoln Memorial University-DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine, will attend dive school in Panama City, Fla., to become an undersea medical officer in the U.S. Navy.


— Cindy Emery of Altoona, secretary in the Medical Intensive Care Unit at UPMC Altoona, recently retired with 36 years of service.

She was hired May 15, 1978, as a ward secretary. During her tenure, she followed her unit as it was relocated to 6E, Tower 11, and Tower 14. In 1990, she moved to Medical Intensive Care.

Submissions for Workplace can be sent to Walt Frank at