Our View | Silvis equipped for leadership role as VP of Penn State trustees

The Penn State board of trustees had two strong finalists for the vice chairman position.

We congratulate Centre County businessman Paul Silvis for his election Friday to that important post. He will bring to his duties a sound analytical approach to the issues and a deep love for the university.

He replaces Stephanie Deviney, who was voted off the board this spring.

“There’s a time when you’re called to step up, and this was the time,” Silvis said.

The trustees’ new vice president is a Penn State graduate and a true entrepreneurial success story.

He founded Restek in 1985, and grew the chromatography startup into a company of 300 employees, who all own a share in the operation at Penn Eagle Industrial Park on Benner Pike. The company also has a research facility in California and subsidiaries in Europe and Asia.

Silvis earned an MBA from Penn State in 2006, and a few years later launched SilcoTek based on a patented process for coating metal surfaces with fused silicon. SilcoTek is moving into a new building in the Benner Business Park.

Silvis was appointed to the Penn State board in 2010 by Gov. Ed Rendell.

He has expressed a desire to address education affordability for students and has shown a willingness to embrace openness concerning board actions.

We also applaud board member Ryan McCombie, who was runner-up to Silvis in voting for vice president. Beginning just his second year on the board, McCombie was willing to step forward and accept greater responsibility.

We look forward to Silvis and McCombie taking on important leadership roles on the board of trustees.