Business people in the news

April 26, 2014 

The Centre Area Transportation Authority board of directors appointed Louwana S. Oliva as the general manager effective July 1, upon the retirement of longtime general manager Hugh Mose.

Oliva has served CATA as its assistant general manager for four years, according to a report from CATA.

Oliva, a native of Akron, Ohio, served for more than 15 years as the director of communications and then assistant executive director at the Akron Metro Regional Transit Authority.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in mass media with a minor in political science from the University of Akron. She’s also a graduate of Leadership American Public Transportation Association, Leadership Akron and Leadership Centre County.

Marc McCann is the new executive director for Global Connections. He started the position on Monday.

He earned a master’s degree in American history from Penn State in 1994. He lives in State College with his wife, Denise, and three sons, Conor, Alex and Aidan.

Two Ace Answering Service staff members were recognized at the Startel National Users Group annual conference in Philadelphia.

Kristal Fye, operations manager, received a certificate acknowledging her dedicated service to the SNUG organization. She is currently serving SNUG as the organization’s secretary and serves on the board of directors.

Fye also served the organization as the membership chairwoman in 2013.

John Szwarc, business development coordinator, received a certificate acknowledging his presentation at the SNUG conference titled, “Marketing a Telephone Answering Service in Today’s Electronic World”.

Andy and Cindy Krishak, president and vice president, also attended the SNUG conference.

SNUG, is an international industry trade organization of telephone answering services and call centers.

Ace Answering Service, headquartered in State College, is a telemessaging service and business support company.

Centre County Housing and Land Trust announced that Rachel Fawcett has been named executive director.

Fawcett’s responsibilities include establishing relationships with local government, community organizations, corporations and community members, and overseeing fundraising, which will be developed through community outreach and marketing for the organization.

Fawcett, of Centre Hall, earned a bachelor of architecture degree from Penn State.

The mission of the organization is to provide development and oversight of affordable housing for Centre County residents, including those of low and moderate income.

Kevin McGarry has been promoted to principal of Urish Popeck.

McGarry, a Penn State accounting graduate, has been with the firm’s State College office for 11 years, where he leads the business services group and provides small to midsize businesses, start-ups and individual business owners with assurance, business advisory, and tax planning and compliance services.

McGarry was a graduate of Leadership Centre County in 2012.

Urish Popeck & Co. is a certified public accounting firm with offices in Pennsylvania and Florida.

Trailways announced that Gottfried Fodor, of Fullington Trailways, was the winner of its national Trailways Outstanding Driver of the Year Award-Charter & Tour Division for 2013.

Fodor, of Bellefonte, received the award at a gala on March 11 during the 78th Trailways stockholder meeting and conference in Florida.

He has been with the company since 1982 and was nominated by Michael Fullington, vice president and chief operations officer of Fullington Trailways.

“His integrity, work ethic and his willingness to go the extra mile, make him one of our most valued employees,” Fullington said in his nomination letter. “He is one of the company’s most requested drivers ever.”

The nomination listed some of Fodor’s accomplishments and included nearly 30 letters of thanks written to him dating as far back as 1987.

Fodor has driven 51,855 miles in 2013 accident-free, according to a press release from the company.

Fullington Trailways’ corporate office has been in Clearfield for more than 100 years and its operations office is in State College.

David Panko, financial adviser and owner of Panko Wealth Management in Patton Township, was appointed as an ambassador for the National Financial Planning Association in Denver.

Panko served as a member of the National FPA Chapter Leaders Council for the last two years and was president of the Financial Planning Association of Central Pennsylvania in 2010.

He is responsible for advising the FPA’s 92 chapters on board development and government relations.

Penn State Outreach and Online Education announced that Renata S. Engel would assume the role of associate vice provost for online programs, effective June 1.

She is currently associate dean for academic programs and professor in Penn State’s College of Engineering.

Engel’s new responsibilities would include helping advance new online undergraduate and graduate offerings to students around the world.

“Renata brings a wealth of talent, leadership and institutional knowledge to this important academic position,” said Craig Weidemann, vice president for outreach and vice provost for online education. “The continued development of outstanding online programs, embedded within Penn State’s colleges and campuses, will play a critical role in the attraction of new students and advancing teaching innovations.”

According to a press release, Engel has been a Penn State faculty member since 1990. She earned a bachelor of science degree in engineering science from Penn State and a doctoral degree in engineering mechanics from the University of South Florida.

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