All posts tagged venango county

Northern PA Regional College Kicks off Fall Term

NPRC SEALFall 2018 has been an exciting term for Northern Pennsylvania Regional College (NPRC). Classes began on August 22 at 14 site locations over nine counties. This term also marked the start of two new Associate of Arts Degrees – Criminal Justice and Early Childhood Education/Early Intervention.

Shortly after the term began, NPRC celebrated yet another new chapter in the College’s existence–the Inauguration of its Founding President, Dr. Joseph T. Nairn, who believes in the transformative power of education to improve lives and revive communities.

NPRC is the first college developed in Pennsylvania since 1993. For the Inauguration, a college seal was adopted to be displayed on the Presidential Medallion–a symbol of the Office of the President. NPRC chose to represent the nine-county area they serve with a nonagon shape and nine hemlocks. The seal was designed by Caitlin Nairn, Founding President Nairn’s daughter.

Throughout the day, Dr. Nairn insisted that this event was not about him, but about the students and the success of those that attend NPRC. Alumna Tesla Moore confirmed his statement in her remarks by saying: “This is the idea that drives the success of this school. The benefits to the students are the main priority.” It was further echoed in Dr. Nairn’s sentiment, “We believe in and respect the inherent worth and dignity of all, and our academic staff are charged with ensuring our curricula reflect that respect for the talents, beliefs, backgrounds, and traditions of our learners.”

NPRC is currently enrolling students for the Spring 2019 term. The class schedule can be found at You can also contact Student Success Specialist Steve Carr at for more information.


This article was published in the Venango Area Chamber of Commerce’s November 2018 edition of the VenangoWorks! Newsletter.


Chamber Member Expansions


In addition to celebrating our new members, we have some longstanding ones whose success is demanding them to expand their businesses.

Bert Klapec, Inc. (BKI), located on North Seneca Street in Oil City, is building an 80×80 foot steel repair garage for trucks and machines (pictured top right). The original garage was only 65-feet long and they couldn’t fit a whole tractor trailer inside, so it was time to grow. Dave Klapec reported: “We’ll be able to work on all of our big machines indoors now.” BKI, along with some help from Klapec Express, Inc. (KEI), is CALDWELLdoing all of the work themselves in between jobs. They hope to have all outside work done before winter and then finish up inside shortly after.

Caldwell Printing and Signage Solutions has recently grown as well. The building (pictured middle right), which was previously used to store plumbing equipment, was already attached to their current space, so it was the perfect addition. With the new addition, their square footage is up to about 9,700 feet. The space will be used for production.

Deets Mechanical, located on Gilmore Drive in Seneca, is also in the process of expanding their foDEETSotprint. A warehouse and garage space (pictured bottom right) measuring about 4,400 square feet is almost finished and since adding five trucks to their caravan this year, will be a welcome addition. They are doing most of the work in house, which started this summer, and are excited to finish and put the new space to use.

Another new local business changes involves Bob Fox, owner of Chamber member Fox Containers. Bob has teamed up with Grove City businessman, Dan Martin, to form FOXPAK, LLC,  packaging various types of ice melts. FOXPAK has already identified several distribution locations throughout the region and will be looking for more.  We’ll be sharing more about Bob’s new venture in our next newsletter.


This article was published in the Venango Area Chamber of Commerce’s November 2018 edition of the VenangoWorks! Newsletter.


Meet the Leadership Venango Class of 2019

Randy Randy Arnold is a senior mechanical engineer at Pioneer Energy Products (PEPRO) in Oil City. He has a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Grove City College and is a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of Pennsylvania. Randy’s focus is on designing product that is built with pride in Oil City and surrounding areas to serve the telecommunications and emergency communications around the nation. His passion is for engineering and product design and focusing on how to combine that with a business plan to create growth.


TessaLVTessa Byham is an Oil City native with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies from Edinboro University. She is the Executive Assistant at the Venango Area Chamber of Commerce and loves being involved with the growth of the region through the position. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and daughter, kayaking, reading, and attending local events. She is also an active member of the FLEX Young Professionals Group and an Ambassador for the Be Here Initiative.


LindseyLindsey Canchola is the Regional Director of Sales and Marketing for Presbyterian SeniorCare Network and oversees the outreach for Oakwood Heights here in Oil City. She has been employed at SeniorCare for just shy of  7 years. Lindsey graduated suma cum laude from the University of Pittsburgh. Lindsey resides in Meadville Pa with her husband, Anthony and their two sons, Landon and Connor. Lindsey is involved in: Aseracare Foundation Board, treasurer for Randolph League, University of Pittsburgh Board of Alumni.


JeffJeffrey Fedei is currently the manager of the robust Environmental Services department within UPMC Northwest. Jeffrey started his career in the healthcare setting in 1999 where he worked as an environmental services technician and has continued to advance his career through on-the-job-training and education.  He has served as a corporate representative with the UPMC Health System and Value Analysis Team where he provides input on strategies for the prevention of microorganism transmission.  He has also served as a product evaluator to ensure the ease of use by environmental service workers.


DanDan Flaherty, born and raised in Oil City, is Executive Director of the Oil Region Library Association (ORLA). ORLA is responsible for the operations of the three county public libraries (Cooperstown, Franklin, Oil City). Dan holds a bachelor’s degree in History and a master’s degree in Library Science, both from Clarion University. He is married to Ashley Flaherty, also an Oil City native. Together, they have fun hiking and canoeing with their dog, Keasbey, time at home with their cat, Jim, and entertaining with family and friends. He also enjoys reading, home brewing, and gardening. Dan has helped organize local Disc Golf events at the Hasson Park course and has contributed in various roles to the Pennsylvania Library Association.


GregGreg Lander is a Venango County native who attended St. Stephen Elementary school and Oil City High School. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from Penn State Erie, the Behrend College, and is  Vice President of Klapec Trucking Company in Reno, PA. He enjoys driving the KTC trucks in the local parades and transporting the City of Franklin Christmas tree. He serves as an active member of St. Stephen Church where he is a greeter and helps with the annual St. Stephen Heritage Festival. He volunteers at St. Stephen School by helping with the students swim classes and the Reverse Raffle.


MarcMarc Lander is an Oil City High School graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Science and Technology from the California University of Pennsylvania. He began driving for Klapec Trucking Company after college, then moved into the office to learn the different areas of the business.  Currently, he is the Operation Manager at Klapec Trucking Company.  Marc is a member of St. Stephens Church, where he and his wife donate 25 hours of service each year. He is also a proud parent of three delightful girls.


EmilyEmily Lewis is a native of Venango County, with a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies and minors in Business Administration and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) from Slippery Rock University. As Director of the Venango County Economic Development Authority, she is responsible for the development of several area projects including the revitalization and re-use currently underway at the Oil City National Bank building and the continued development of the county’s fiber optic network. Before becoming Director of the Authority, she was Deputy Director of the Venango County Regional Planning Commission.


LaurenLauren Lupinacci is a native of Venango County with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting from Clarion University of Pennsylvania. As the Program Manager for Bridge Builders Community Foundations for the past five years, she leads the fiscal aspects of the Community Foundation while also administering a scholarship program that grants out over a quarter of a million dollars annually from over sixty different funds. She assists in the administration of the National Transit Building and Annex. Lauren is a member of the FLEX and is excited about becoming a more integral part of the group. In her free time, she enjoys participating in community events with her family and friends.


BRIANBrian McNulty is the Assistant District Executive for the Design Unit of PennDOT Engineering District 1-0 in Oil City. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh and is a professionally licensed engineer in Pennsylvania. Brian directs and oversees the planning and design of approximately $130 million of highway and bridge projects in the Erie, Warren, Crawford, Forest, Mercer and Venango counties annually. He is a member of the Franklin Chapter of the American Society of Highway Engineers (ASHE) and is on the School Advisory Council of St. Patrick Elementary School in Franklin.


AshleyAshley Smith is a Franklin native with a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Technology Management and an associate’s degree in Computer Aided Drafting and Design from Clarion University, and has taken technical courses at Triangle Tech-Dubois. She is currently working towards a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Youngstown State University. Ashley is employed at the Venango County Regional Planning Commission as the Land Use Planner. In her free time, she is a Franklin High School Marching Band Bandfront advisor and helps coach with Franklin Middle School Cheerleading. She is a new member of FLEX and an ambassador of the Be Here Initiative.


MalloryMallory Spence is a native to the Venango County area, residing in both Franklin and Oil City for extended periods of time. She attended Clarion University where she studied Business Administration and Finance. Since school she has gained 7 years of experience in specialized areas of accounting. She is currently employed at United Way of Venango County as the resource specialist, where she is responsible for accounting operations, overseeing marketing, and campaign account management.


RyanRyan Sweeney is a native to Venango County who holds the position of Quality Engineer at Webco Industries, where he is responsible for the development of new products at both the Oil City and Reno facilities. Sweeney holds a bachelor’s degree in Science and Mathematics, associate’s degree in Manufacturing Engineering Technology, and a minor in Environmental Studies from Edinboro University. Sweeney enjoys all outdoor activities and spending time with his family.



Leadership Venango is a nine-month program of the Venango Chamber designed to identify, educate, involve and motivate individuals who desire to become more effective leaders. 

Learn more about the program at

Leadership Venango Logo




This article was published in the Venango Area Chamber of Commerce’s November 2018 edition of the VenangoWorks! Newsletter.


Four New Faces at the Oil Region Alliance

ORA FINAL LOGODESIGN2010The Oil Region Alliance (ORA) is an economic development and tourist promotion agency serving the Oil Region—comprised of Venango County, the City of Titusville, and Oil Creek Township. The Alliance works to increase the prosperity of the Oil Region and they have recently added four new staff members to their ranks.

Bringing a new energy to the organization are: Stewart Armstrong, Jennifer Burden, Emily Altomare, and Juliet Hilburn. All four are sure to bring new ideas from their previous roles and be great assets to the ORA and the region.

Stop by their office located at 217 Elm Street in Oil City to say hello, and follow the ORA on Facebook at


Stewart Armstrong
Marketing Coordinator & Artist Liaison

Jennifer Burden
Historian &

Emily Altomare
Communications & Tourism Manager

Juliet Hilburn
Analyst &

This article was published in the Venango Area Chamber of Commerce’s November 2018 edition of the VenangoWorks! Newsletter.

Leadership Venango Holds Second Session: Honorable Leadership

The 2019 Class of Leadership Venango reconnected on October 10 at the Venango County Courthouse Annex in Franklin. Dr. Raymond Feroz, Professor at Clarion University, was the morning guest speaker who started the day by having the class participate in an exercise to identify what characteristics honorable leaders have.

Denise Jones, the former Chief Clerk for the Commissioner’s Office, connected with the class to give an overview about how the local government functions and what amenities it has to offer the public. Commissioner Abramovic gave the class a tour of the Courthouse before meeting The Honorable Oliver Lobaugh in Courtroom One to discuss the area’s struggles and what actions need to be put in place to progress as a community.

The class broke mid-day to take a group photo along with professional head shots, then met at the Barrow-Civic Little Theatre, where the Commissioners were introduced to the group to chat about our community.

After lunch, Trenton Moulin, Executive Director of Bridge Builders Community Foundations, presented about non-profit corporations and educated the group about board member development. Zachary Covington, Executive Director of the Barrow-Civic Theatre, added his experience of moving to the area and becoming involved in the cultural development and performing arts to the region. Before going on a tour of the Barrow, Zach and Trenton provided the class with information about FLEX (Future Leaders & Entrepreneurs Exchange) which the class can utilize as a resource to connect with like-minded young professionals.

The next session will take place on Wednesday, November 14 at Cranberry Place in the Cranberry Mall, with a focus on understanding community caregiving.

To learn more about Leadership Venango visit

This article was published in the Venango Area Chamber of Commerce’s November 2018 edition of the VenangoWorks! Newsletter.