New hires and promotions
-- Dr. Lindon T. Kwock has joined the UPMC Altoona medical staff in the Department of Radiology.
Kwock, who is board-certified by the American Board of Radiology, received a medical degree from Tulane University, New Orleans; did internship training at University of California, San Francisco, and residency training at University of Illinois, Chicago.
-- David Haschak has been named associate dean of humanities at Mount Aloysius College, Cresson. Haschak has been serving in the position in an interim capacity since May.
As associate dean of humanities, social science and professional studies, Haschak will serve as faculty administrator for the departments of business and information technology, education, ASL English Interpreting, English/fine arts, justice, law and society, enrichment and psychology/religious studies. He will oversee curriculum on both the undergraduate and graduate levels.
-- Joseph Scialabba has been named director of gifts at Juniata College.
Scialabba, a 1986 Juniata graduate and a lifelong Huntingdon resident, will oversee the college's major and planned giving programs while supervising the traveling development staff.
Scialabba comes to Juniata from Penn State University, where he was director of major gifts at the Smeal College of Business from 2011 to April 2014.
-- Katherine Murtagh, a physician's assistant, has joined Blair Medical Associates Cardiology Department.
Practicing at the Station Medical Center, Murtagh, who is board certified by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants, will provide services for patients of Blair Medical Associates Cardiology physician, Dr. George Jabbour.
-- Heather Wilson of Tyrone has become an independent consultant with Tastefully Simple Inc., a national direct sales company featuring more than 60 easy-to-prepare foods.
Wilson offers food samples at home taste-testing parties and ideas for everyday meals, recipes and serving suggestions.
Awards and honors
-- Robert E. Vamos of Johnstown, a financial services executive for MetLife, has earned MetLife's Leaders Level of recognition, an honor bestowed to a select set of MetLife top producers who exemplify the highest standards of personal integrity, professionalism and customer service across the company.
Vamos has worked in the financial services industry for 23 years.
-- Timothy Keener, a computer technology/Cisco Academy Instructor at the Greater Altoona Career and Technology Center, was recently recognized by the Cisco Networking Academy for his accomplishments and contributions to the academy as an advanced level instructor and for 10 years of active participation in the Cisco Networking Academy program.
This award recognizes his achievements as one of the top 25 percent of instructors globally.
-- Todd Davis, professor of English at Penn State Altoona, won the top 2014 editor's prize from Chautauqua Literacy Journal for his poem "The Last Time My Mother Lay Down With My Father."
The honor comes with a cash award. The poem will be nominated for a Pushcart Prize.
-- Jessica Schocker, assistant professor of social studies education and women's studies at Penn State Berks, was one of six Penn State faculty members to receive the 2014 George W. Atherton Award for excellence in teaching.
The award, named after Penn State's seventh president, honors excellence in teaching at the undergraduate level.
Schocker is a native of Hollidaysburg.
-- Michael Roddey, owner/chef consultant of Gastronomic Services & Consulting, of Duncansville recently received the President's Medallion from the American Culinary Federation at the 2014 ACF Northeast Regional Conference.
The President's Medallion is presented to food service professionals who exemplify culinary excellence and leadership, and have contributed their knowledge, skills and expertise to the advancement of the culinary profession.
Course completions and certifications
-- Bryan Horetsky, a third party administrator at Retirement Plan Solutions in Tipton, recently earned the Qualified Pension Administrator designation from the American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries.
The QPA credential allows Horetsky to better assist businesses with their retirement plan needs.
-- Magisterial District Judge Craig Ormsby was again certified for service as a member of Pennsylvania's Unified Judicial System after successful completion of continuing legal education work.
The weeklong instructional program is designed to ensure that magisterial district judges remain current in a variety of legal topics and management techniques required to fairly adjudicate cases and effectively supervise a district court office.
-- Tulay Girard, associate professor of marketing at Penn State Altoona, and her research assistant, student Krissa Weyent, recently presented their research study, "A Survey of Employer Needs and Expectations from Business Programs at Higher Education Institutions," at the 2014 Association of Marketing and Theory Conference in Hilton Head, S.C.
Girard also presented her co-authored research paper, "Investigating Consumer Perceptions, Purchase Shares of Private-Label Brands and Demographics: A Study of the Great Value Brand," at the same conference.
-- Brian C. Miller, a paraprofessional for the Altoona Area School District, recently had his poem, "Just Write" published in the winter issue of The Storyteller Magazine, Manyard, Ariz.
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