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Introducing the Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy Fellows


Introducing the Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy Fellows

Congratulations to the 22 new Fellows of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy!

The Scranton Area Community Foundation is pleased to announce the class of Fellows of a new program designed to improve local economic mobility and workforce development efforts and present innovative solutions to the challenges faced by workers and businesses.

The Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy, a yearlong Fellowship developed through a partnership with the Aspen Institute Economic Opportunities Program, engages nonprofit, government, academic, and business leaders in a series of retreats and workshops as they work together to advance an innovative and equitable workforce ecosystem.

The Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy is the first in Pennsylvania, and one of eight launched this year through the support of The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation, and Walmart. This Academy is the latest in a series of several Workforce Leadership Academies hosted in communities across the United States and Canada.

The 22 Fellows of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy Class of 2023-24 represent a range that include nonprofit organizations, chambers of commerce, workforce development boards, institutes of higher education, and health care institutions. The Academy launched in March and will culminate with a collaborative capstone project presentation in December 2023.

Fellows selected for the Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy are:

Vicki Austin
Senior Director of Grants and Education

Jill Avery-Stoss, MBA
Chief Operating Officer
The Institute

Cathy Colangelo, PHR
Executive Director
Greater Hazleton Partners in Education

Brian Coulthard
Assistant Administrator
Greater Hazleton Partners in Education

Robert DeLuca, MEd
Director of Leadership and Accountability
Scranton School District

Janna Genzlinger, MEd
Senior Director of Human Resources
Settlers Hospitality Group

Tamear Henegain
Heartwood Coordinator
Willow Foundation

Serena Howarth, MPA
Executive Director
Dress for Success Lackawanna

Tiffany Jackson, MSM, SHRM-CP
Organizational Development Manager
The Wright Center for Community Health

Meghan Loftus, DPA
President & CEO
Friends of the Poor

Linda Loop
Founder and CEO
Dress for Success Luzerne County

Heather MacLennan, MBA
Workforce Development Specialist

Alejandra Marroquin, MSW
Community Organizer
Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine

Shanie Mohamed
Director of Economic Development
Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce

Krista Murray
Executive Director
Catherine McAuley Center

Judy Oprisko
Vice President of Human Resources/Compliance Officer
Allied Services

Michelle Ostroski, EdD, LSW
School Social Work Consultant
Soliant Health

Jennifer Shoemaker
Program Manager

Kirsten Smith, MEd
Director of Career Services
Fortis Institute

Susan Spry
Associate Vice President Academic Affairs
Luzerne County Community College

Don Webster
Executive Director

Keshia Williams

“I recently had the chance to spend time with the Leadership Academy Fellows, and I found them to be a group of intelligent, dedicated and energetic individuals who share a strong commitment to Northeastern Pennsylvania and the workforce sector in our region,” said Laura Ducceschi, President & CEO of the Scranton Area Community Foundation. “When you bring exceptional individuals like this together and give them time, encouragement and guidance – as the Workforce Leadership Academy does – real, long-lasting change at a systemic level becomes possible. I am excited about the important work the Fellows are doing together, and I look forward to seeing the results of this work in our communities.”

The Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy is guided by an Advisory Council:

Karla Carlucci
Career Technology Center of Lackawanna County

Lori Chaffers
Executive Director

Eileen Cipriani
Office of Economic and Community Development
City of Scranton

Bob Durkin
President & CEO
Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce

Yosara Gonzalez
Executive Director
Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress

Lindsay Griffin-Boylan
President & CEO
Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce

Christine Jensen
PA CareerLink, Luzerne County

Rashida Lovely
Director of Operations
NEPA Black Chamber of Commerce

Jill Murray
Lackawanna College

Teri Ooms
Executive Director
The Institute

Carolyn Quinn
Executive Director
Educational Opportunity Centers of PA

Drew Simpson
Regional Manager
Eastern Atlantic States
Regional Council of Carpenters

Jocelyn Sterenchock
Director of Economic Development
CAN-DO Greater Hazleton

Virginia Turano
Executive Director
Lackawanna County Workforce Development Board

Debra Youngfelt
Executive Director
Northeast PA Area Health Education Center

“Collaboration grows at the speed of trust, and today’s workforce development leaders are increasingly being asked to devise solutions through collaboration,” said Sheila Maguire, senior fellow at the Aspen Institute Economic Opportunities Program. “This Academy is a rare opportunity for these local leaders to step back with colleagues from Northeastern Pennsylvania, reflect on their own organizational challenges, hear from leading practitioners from around the country, and develop the network and trust so essential for success.”

Biographical information on the Fellows and Facilitators is available here.

If you have questions about the Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy, please contact Jana Nelhybel, NEPA Thrives Manager, at jana@safdn.org.

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