Peoples Financial Services Corp. Announces New Board Member

Peoples Financial Services Corp., the holding company for Peoples Security Bank and Trust Company, is pleased to announce the appointment of Elisa (Lisa) Zúñiga Ramirez to its Board of Directors. As a result of Ms. Ramirez’s appointment, the Board of Directors was increased from seven members to eight members. 

Ms. Ramirez brings more than 30 years of executive-level experience in institutional investing and capital markets with a proven track record of value creation. Until her retirement in 2020, she was Senior Portfolio Manager and Principal at Segal Bryant and Hamill, an employee-owned money manager with more than $25 billion in assets under management. Prior to this, she was Senior Portfolio Manager and Partner at Denver Investments LLC, which was acquired by Segal Bryant and Hamill in 2018. Currently, Ms. Ramirez is the President of Éxito Consulting, LLC, which advises boards, companies and individuals on corporate strategy, ESG and financial matters.

Lisa is currently a corporate director for Bow River Capital, a $1.6 billion private equity firm and the Denver Employees Retirement Plan, a $2.7 billion public retirement system serving the city of Denver employees and retirees. She is also a director on these non-profits: National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) Colorado Chapter; The Denver Foundation; Vuela for Health; and Latinas First Foundation, a scholarship and mentorship program supportive of Colorado Latinas.

Ms. Ramirez earned her BSBA from the University of Colorado at Denver and an MBA from Regis University, Denver, CO. She’s a 2021 graduate of Boardbound by Women’s Leadership Foundation, a Chartered Financial Analyst and holds the SASB FSA credential. She’s also an avid supporter of organizations that empower women and stimulate equality and representation in the workplace, as well as foster professional leadership development, including: The Athena Alliance; Latino Corporate Directors Association; Women Corporate Directors; NACD; and Extraordinary Women on Boards (EWOB).

Ms. Ramirez commented, “I am excited to be joining the board of such a strong and well-run bank, and look forward to bringing a unique outside perspective to drive stakeholder value. I’m impressed by our bank, our leadership and I feel there is an incredible story to tell. I look forward to bringing my 30 years of investment experience to the table and collaborating with our other impressive and experienced board members.”

Regarding Ms. Ramirez’s appointment, William Aubrey, Chairman of Peoples Financial Services Corp.’s board stated, “We are excited to have a person of Lisa’s qualifications and experience join our board. Her capital market experience in analyzing hundreds of small cap companies allows her to bring a long history of value creation to our board. I look forward to working with her to improve shareholder’s value.”

Lisa resides in Denver, Colorado with her husband, Ron, and their twin boys, Román and Mason.

Jamie Shnipes Promoted to Branch Supervisor at HNB

Thomas E. Sheridan Jr., President and CEO of The Honesdale National Bank, has announced Jamie Shnipes has been promoted to Branch Supervisor of HNB’s Eynon Office.

In making the announcement, Sheridan stated, “Jamie began her banking career at HNB with the opening of our Eynon Office.” He continued,  “We are confident that her knowledge of the local community, and dedication to customer service, will insure success in her new position.”

As Branch Supervisor, Shnipes will be responsible for building customer relationships to help customers with their specific banking needs, as well as supporting the everyday operations of the branch.

Shnipes began her career in the financial industry in 2013 as a Part-time Teller/CSR at HNB. In 2018 she accepted a fulltime position at the bank. She will continue growing her Career as Branch Supervisor of our Eynon Office.

In commenting on her time at the bank, Shnipes noted, “I feel like I have the confidence and the support to grow my career with HNB. I met a lot of great people over the years and I enjoy meeting new people and helping them with their banking needs.”

Shnipes resides in Eynon, Pa. and is a graduate of Valley View High School. Outside of the bank, she enjoys being with family, either attending her children’s sports or spending time at their camper.

Dress for Success Lackawanna Women Making an Impact Campaign

Dress for Success Lackawanna is celebrating Women’s History month with the “Your Hour Her Power” Women Making an Impact campaign. This is the inaugural year for the campaign which benefits Dress for Success Lackawanna.

“The Your Hour Her Power campaign is built on lifting women up and recognizing their achievements,” said Mary Ann Iezzi, Executive Director. “Women play an important role in the economy there is a ripple effect that occurs when women are supported and have the ability to become active members of their community.”

The “Your Hour Her Power” campaign continues through the month of March and will close with a special event in April honoring ten remarkable women throughout the organizations six county footprint. 

“We have some extraordinary women in our community and the event gives us the opportunity celebrate all the wonderful things they have accomplished along with the impact they have in their communities,” Iezzi said. 

All proceeds raised go to Dress for Success Lackawanna supporting the agencies programs helping women secure employment and achieve economic independence.

Dress for Success Lackawanna is very grateful for all the community support and would like to acknowledge the sponsors of the campaign:

  • Presenting Sponsor: NBT Bank
  • Sponsors: Bluelefante, The Hawk Family Foundation, Weinberg Foundation, Lackawanna Medical Group, Scranton Area Community Foundation, Women In Philanthropy, Wayne County Community Foundation
  • Honoree Sponsors: NBT Bank, McGrail Merkel Quinn PC, FNCB Bank, LMG Cosmetics, NET Bank, AAA North Penn, Wayne Memorial Health System, The Honesdale National Bank, The University of Scranton, The Wright Center, Friends of Sandra Lamanna
  • Media Sponsors: WNEP, Adams Outdoor, King Outdoor and Lamar Advertising

The Woman Making an Impact Honorees:

  • Amanda Grippo, Certified Registered Nurse Practitioner:  LMG Cosmetics                            
  • Bethany Fine, Director of Human Resources:  Wayne Memorial Health System                    
  • Cindy Smaniotto, Chief Human Resources Officer:  NBT Bank                      
  • Dr. Sandra Lamanna: School Psychologist                            
  • Julie Schumacher Cohen, Assistant Vice President of Community Engagement & Government Affairs: The University of Scranton                
  • Kate Bryant, SVP, CFO:  The Honesdale National Bank                    
  • Margaret McCormick, Chief Financial Officer:  AAA North Penn                  
  • Mary Griffin Cummings, Executive Vice President and General Counsel:  FNCB Bank              
  • Mary Rapach, Member Service Center Manager:  NET Credit Union                         
  • Stephanie Mihal, Partner:  McGrail Merkel Quinn, PC      

Event Details: hybrid event (in-person & virtual option)

  • More details on the event can be found at
  • What: “Women Making an Impact”
  • Location: Hilton Hotel & Conference Center
  • Date:  Wednesday, April 6, 2022
  • Time:  5:30 p.m.– 7:00 p.m.
  • Ticket cost:  $50.00

The Wright Center Achieves 100% Match for Regional Residencies

The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education welcomed 58 new resident physicians into its four regional residencies after achieving a 100% match on national Match Day for newly minted doctors.

The National Resident Matching Program’s Match Day is one of the most important events and competitive processes in the medical school experience. On the third Friday of March each year, fourth-year medical students, as well as their graduate medical education programs, learn where they will complete the next stage of their medical training.

The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education matched residents in the following regional programs: Internal Medicine Residency (34); Regional Family Medicine Residency (12); Psychiatry Residency (7), and Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (5) – the newest training program. Resident physicians will begin their first-year residencies on July 1.

The National Family Medicine Residency has filled its resident physician positions at the Tucson, Arizona (4); Auburn, Washington (4); Washington, D.C., and Hillsboro, Ohio (3) training sites.

The incoming first-year residents for the five residencies hail from eight countries, including Canada (11), Egypt (1), India (12), Nepal (4), Pakistan (6), Philippines (1), Saudi Arabia (1) and the United States (39). Overall, The Wright Center received 5,744 applications and interviewed 877 candidates for the available slots in the five residencies.

“It is with great excitement that I congratulate and welcome each of our new resident physicians to our learning and clinical communities. I look forward to working closely with each of you during your journey in postgraduate medical education,” said Dr. Jumee Barooah, the designated institution official at The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education. “Your residency is a once-in-a-lifetime educational experience that only you and your peers can understand. You have plenty to be proud of as your persistence, passion and dedication to the field have earned you this opportunity.”

The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education was founded in 1976 as the Scranton-Temple Residency Program, a community-based internal medicine residency. Today, it educates and trains more than 220 resident physicians and fellows annually through a unique Graduate Medical Education and Safety Net Consortium, which is funded by federal agencies and supported by multiple health care organizations that provide learning environments. The organization also offers fellowships in cardiovascular disease, gastroenterology and geriatrics.

Last year, The Wright Center for Graduate Medical Education matched 69 resident physicians in the Internal Medicine (35), Regional Family Medicine (12), National Family Medicine (17) and Psychiatry (5) residencies.

Scranton Native Stephen Karam to Open Northeastern Pennsylvania Film Festival

What happens when you put two national critically-acclaimed creatives (who happen to be from Scranton) on stage together? Find out on April 1 when the American Advertising Federation’s award-winning Helen Lavelle digs deep into conversation with Tony Award-winning playwright, screenwriter, author, and filmmaker Stephen Karam. 

Join the conversation at opening night of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Film Festival Friday, April 1 at 6 p.m. at the Waverly Community House, 1115 N. Abington Road in Waverly. 

Join other filmmakers, community arts advocates, and your movie buff friends as Lavelle quizzes Karam to learn the following: 

How did a guy from Scranton take an idea that began at his kitchen table, turn it into a script, bring The Humans to Broadway, and win the coveted Tony Award for Best Play? 

And, if that fairy tale outcome wasn’t enough, what drove Stephen Karam to dig even deeper to adapt The Humans to a major motion picture? 

During COVID? 

That’s just the beginning of the conversation and a weekend that celebrates the arts and shines a light on NEPA filmmaking talent. 

Meet Stephen Karam at The Evolution of The Humans from Stage to Screen April 1, beginning at 6 p.m. at the Waverly Community House, 1115 N. Abington Road in Waverly.

Following a cocktail reception and the conversation, the Festival will host a screening of The Humans, Karam’s first feature film.

Lavelle said, “I am thrilled to welcome Stephen Karam back home. I’m excited to engage in a candid conversation, which is bound to inspire. Everyone needs to be here because this promises to be a night you won’t forget.”

The evening is sponsored by Lackawanna County Arts and Culture, WVIA, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, O’Boyle Real Estate, Gails Cupboard, The River 105 FM & 103.5 FM, Toyota of Scranton, and F. Lammot Belin Arts Foundation. 

To purchase tickets for the event, visit

For more information about the NEPA Film Festival, which will be held April 1-3 at the historic Ritz Theater on Wyoming Avenue in downtown Scranton, visit

Geisinger Receives Donation to Help Launch Innovative Programs

A local woman with a passion for programs for improving children’s behavioral health services has donated $1 million to Geisinger’s department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health to help launch innovative programs for young people.

Susan McDowell of Selinsgrove made the commitment to create a pediatric behavioral health catalyst fund that will support projects and programs to promote innovation in the behavioral health care of children and adolescents, something she has been personally invested in for more than 20 years.

In 2009, McDowell developed House of Hope, a faith-based, residential treatment center for at-risk children that served a five-county area of Montour, Snyder, Columbia, Union and Northumberland. McDowell then partnered with Bloomsburg University to create the McDowell Institute in 2012. The mission is to train education students to deal with at-risk children, giving future teachers tools to handle students’ behavioral health issues.

McDowell also has partnered with Geisinger for more than 20 years. Five years ago, through her philanthropy and advice, Geisinger began the Pediatric Primary Care Behavioral Health program and placed 11 pediatric psychologists in pediatric offices. The program has been tremendously successful and, McDowell hopes her recent gift will help Geisinger continue this mission and help recruit talented behavioral health providers to launch similarly innovative and impactful programs.

“Compared to 20 years ago, we have more professionals in the field. We have better places to take care of patients, with the development of a pediatric emergency room and in-patient pediatric psychiatric care,” McDowell said. “Those are things I feel really good about contributing to.”

Psychiatric caregivers are excited to have the catalyst funds to help address the ongoing adolescent mental health crisis.

“It will be exciting to see what our friends and colleagues come up with to build new programs, bring new expertise and partner with the community in new ways to make better behavioral health for our young people,” said Justin Coffey, MD, chair of Geisinger’s department of psychiatry and behavioral health. “Young people are dying from suicide now more than any other cause besides accidents. It’s a crisis. Our children deserve better, our families deserve better, and our families deserve better. It’s time to think differently. Geisinger has a strong tradition of innovation, and we’re ready to bring that expertise and energy to the work of improving behavioral health for young people”

Geisinger Janet Weis Children’s Hospital Chair, Frank Maffei, MD, says the gift will have a huge impact for youth in the community.

“We believe behavioral health care should begin in our general pediatrician’s office in close collaboration with our partners in pediatric psychology and psychiatry,” Dr. Maffei said. “Our partnership has improved access and allowed us to be innovative — seeking new ways to provide these vital services such as telehealth and advancing pediatric behavioral health education in our community. We’re on the precipice of significant change and progress in an area that truly has been in crisis.”

Addressing the crisis requires more than just one person or one gift, but the entire community working together for prevention, according to McDowell.

“Anyone considering a gift to behavioral health should know that it’s money well spent. Write the check, but bring your passion with it,” she said. “I encourage others to begin the conversations with people here. You will be inspired. You will be educated and better prepared to be out there fighting the good fight.”

Marywood University to Offer Professional Continuing Education Program on “Moving Beyond COVID-19”

Marywood University is offering a full-day, in-person continuing education session for educators, counselors, psychologists, social workers, and addictions counselors on “Moving Beyond COVID-19” on Friday, April 1, from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., at Nazareth Student Center on the University’s campus. The program, presented by nationally renowned psychologist David Palmiter, Ph.D., ABPP, will address how to adjust and collectively move forward from the pandemic-induced anxiety and stress that have led to acute needs for mental health services.

COVID’s long shadow has heightened the pandemic’s socioeconomic inequities, leading to additional psychological, economical, and social harm. This fast-paced, science-based, and practical training will focus on understanding the key concepts of what causes collective trauma, as well as what people can do to practice gratitude, promote resilience, cultivate hope, and restore happiness in their professional and personal missions.

Dr. Palmiter, a full professor of psychology at Marywood University, is a board certified practicing psychologist and an examiner for the American Board of Professional Psychology. He is a past president of the Pennsylvania Psychological Association (PPA), and a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, PPA, and the American Academy of Clinical Psychologists. Additionally, Dr. Palmiter has over three dozen professional publications, has delivered over 200 continuing education workshops across the country, and has over 350 media credits (e.g., The New York Times, CNN, The Washington Post). He has won three national awards for his writing, a state award for his media work, and a university award for his work within psychology.

The program fee is $125 and earns six continuing education credit hours. To register, go to and click on the program link. For additional questions, please contact Jill Schroth, director of professional continuing education at Marywood University, at, or call (570) 340-6061.

Settlers Hospitality Open House Offers a Flavor of What’s Available

Take the grand tour of the properties of Settlers Hospitality during the first-ever Open House on Sunday, March 27. The inaugural event from noon-4 p.m. features guided tours of five sites in Hawley, PA, food and drink tastings, music, prizes and more.

“For those planning a special occasion, meeting or wedding, this is really a must-attend event,” explains Justin Genzlinger, CEO/Owner of Settlers Hospitality. “It’s the first time we’re throwing open the doors to all of our Hawley properties to showcase the wide-range of opportunities available. We’re also thrilled to provide an avenue to highlight so many fellow small-business owners as vendors.”

Guests may check-in at The Waterfront at Silver Birches to begin the journey of checking out all the offerings. A shuttle bus will transport passengers between properties including The Settlers Inn, Ledges Hotel, The Boiler Room at the Hawley Silk Mill and Gorgeous Floral. Event planners, staff and preferred vendors will be available at each venue to greet visitors, give tours, provide consultations, and answer questions. Food and drink samplings give attendees a taste of the culinary options the chefs of Settlers Hospitality can craft. During the Open House, Settlers Hospitality will debut newly renovated spaces including The Waterfront at Silver Birches and at Ledges Hotel. It may also serve as an introduction to the recently opened Gorgeous Floral. The retail shop and floral design business launched late last year.

“We’re excited to meet everyone and help them envision all that their event can be, whether it’s a lavish wedding, intimate party or dynamic conference,” says Nancy Harvey, Settlers Hospitality Director of Sales. “I think people will discover each venue has its own personality, from the lakeside setting of Silver Birches to the Arts and Crafts style charm of The Settlers Inn and dramatic backdrop of Ledges Hotel. Plus, there’s the cool, industrial feel of The Boiler Room and lush greenery of Gorgeous Floral.”

Tickets are $20. Each person who attends will receive a swag bag. For more information, visit

CCO at Producto and Graduate of Johnson College, to Deliver Johnson College’s 2022 Commencement Address

Nicholas J. Scarnato, CCO at Producto and a 1980 graduate of Johnson College

Johnson College has selected Nicholas J. Scarnato, CCO at Producto, graduate of Johnson College, class of 1980, and Old Forge, PA native, to give their 2022 commencement address to graduates on Saturday, May 14, 2022, at 10 a.m., at the Circle Drive-In Theatre in Scranton.

As the CCO at Producto, Scarnato is currently instrumental in driving the commercial strategy and development of three (3) platform entities: New Vision Industries, located in Endicott, NY, Ring Precision Components, located in Jamestown, NY, and Dieco, located in Solon, Ohio.

After graduating from Johnson College, Mr. Scarnato’s career started with Singer, Link Flight Simulation Division, as a test engineer. He supported the development, testing, project management, and capture management of multiple U.S. and International Military Simulators. He continued his career with Link, performing as a Customer Liaison to European NATO Forces in Belgium, Denmark, Netherlands, Norway, and Liaison to United States Air Forces, located in Germany and Spain. At Link, Mr. Scarnato became a Capture Team Leader for multiple U.S. Airforce and U.S. Army platform simulators.

After 20 years with Link, Mr. Scarnato joined Collins Aerospace, where he continued to support Military Simulation in multiple capacities for Major Defense platforms. As Strategic Development Director, he supported the acquisition of various companies to meet corporate strategic growth initiatives. He supported a team researching Training Effectiveness, Cognitive Saturation, and Adaptive Learning partnering with small businesses and universities. As the Strategic Development Director, he and his team supported five prominent business leaders in developing their business growth initiatives within a diverse set of Markets: Integrated Simulation and Training, including Live Virtual Constructive Interoperability; Multi-Domain Battlespace; Precision Manufacturing; Nuclear Command & Control, and Autonomous Systems. After Collins Aerospace Mr. Scarnato joined New Vision Industries, where he led a talented team toward the strategic change and growth of the business.

Mr. Scarnato holds an Associate of Applied Science degree in Electronics and Fluidics from Johnson College and a Bachelor of Science degree in Management from Binghamton University. Currently, Mr. Scarnato is a proud member of the Board of Directors at Johnson College. He and his wife reside in the Southern Tier of New York.

Johnson College provides real-world, hands-on learning in a supportive environment and prepares graduates to enter into or advance their careers. Johnson College degrees become essential careers. Johnson College was founded in 1912 and is the region’s only technical college, offering 17 associate degree and 4 academic certificate programs. A low student-to-instructor ratio supports an emphasis on hands-on learning. Located in Scranton on a 44-acre campus, the College is an accredited, private, non-profit, co-educational institution with a strong tradition of working with regional businesses and industries to ensure a skilled and qualified workforce. For additional information on Johnson College, please call 1-800-2-WE-WORK, email, or visit

Moses Taylor Foundation Board Approves Grant for Lackawanna College Scholarships

The Moses Taylor Foundation Board of Directors has approved a five-year grant of $250,000 to support Lackawanna College students pursuing degrees in Health Sciences and Human Services. This gift established the Moses Taylor Foundation Annual Scholarship in honor of LaTida Smith, the Foundation’s President and CEO from 2015 to 2021. The Foundation and Lackawanna College have a successful history of collaborating to improve the health and wellness of Northeastern Pennsylvania residents. This generous contribution will provide scholarships to support the success of students preparing for health and human services positions in our region.