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Penn’s Northeast Holds Annual Meeting

Penn’s Northeast, a regional economic development marketing organization serving Lackawanna, Luzerne, Monroe and Wayne Counties, held its annual meeting on June 19 at The University of Scranton’s Brennan Hall.

Newly appointed board officers include: Chairperson – John Cognetti, president, Hinerfeld Commercial Real Estate; Vice Chairperson – Donald Brominski, marketing director, UGI Penn Natural Gas, Inc.

Continuing to serve as board officers include: Secretary/Treasurer – Andrew Reilly, executive director, Luzerne County Office of Community Development; Immediate Past Chairperson – Charles Leonard, executive director, Monroe County Industrial Development Authority and staff appointed Assistant Secretary/Treasurer – Colleen Reardon, marketing manager, Penn’s Northeast.

PMEDC Executive Director and outgoing Penn’s Northeast Chairman is honored by incoming Board Chairman, John Cognetti with an award

Chuck Leonard (right), PMEDC Executive Director and outgoing Penn’s Northeast Chairman is honored by incoming Board Chairman, John Cognetti (left)

Appointed at large members of the organization’s executive committee serving a two-year term include: Rich Beasley, regional community relations director, PPL Electric Utilities; John Carmody, senior vice president, senior loan officer, Wayne Bank;Rick Linde, president, Leeward Construction, Inc. ; Amy Luyster, administrator, The Scranton Plan; Kevin O’Donnell, president, CAN DO and Mike Pacyna, senior vice president, PNC Bank.
Three at large board members were nominated to serve a three-year term: William E. Sordoni, president Sordoni Construction Services; Scott Lynett, CEO of Times-Shamrock Communications and Publisher of The Times-Tribune and Brian Grove, senior director – corporate development, Chesapeake Energy Corporation.

Michael Pacyna, senior vice president, PNC Bank, was nominated to continue to serve as an at large board member filling a two-year term .

John Cognetti recognized outgoing board chair, Charles Leonard, executive director, Monroe County Industrial Development Authority for his leadership as chair and presented to him a token of appreciation for his service.

Anna Cervenak, consultant; Michael Dziak , president/CEO, Earth Conservancy; Robert Mericle, president & CEO, Mericle Commercial Real Estate Services and Robert Suhosky, president, Cherry Ridge, Inc. were acknowledged for their leadership service on the executive committee from July 2008 – June 2012.

Outgoing board member Michael Dziak was recognized for his years on the board and his leadership on the executive committee, the marketing committee and the nominating committee, where he served as chairman.

Penn’s Northeast’s President Penny Cannella stressed the importance of a regional business attraction effort in today’s economy. She reviewed the organization’s accomplishments over the past year. Some of the highlights included:

– Penn’s Northeast attendance at various trade shows and conferences, representing the region and targeting new prospects.

– An international marketing effort that involved working in collaboration with PA Office of International Business Development (OIBD). 13% of Penn’s Northeast leads came through the OIBD office in 2011/2012.

– An aggressive real estate marketing campaign that included continually updating an online real estate database of available buildings and sites and ongoing email marketing campaign promoting featured properties in the region. – Hosting various special events that bring prospects to northeast Pennsylvania, showing them the many amenities the region has to offer.

For a copy of the Penn’s Northeast 2012 annual report that more thoroughly outlines the organization’s accomplishments over the past year, please call 570-883-0504.

Penn’s Northeast’s mission is to market Northeast Pennsylvania as a region on a national and international level, encouraging businesses to relocate from other areas, and assist in the growth and development of existing businesses. Visit for more information.

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