Keystone Mission Receives ARPA Grant

Keystone Mission was awarded a $25,000 grant from the City of Scranton American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Nonprofit Grants Fund in partnership with the Scranton Area Community Foundation. The funding will help replenish the revenue loss during the Covid-19 pandemic and weather financial hardship brought by the unexpected expenses related.

The Dime Bank Donates to the YMCA Project

The Dime Bank donates $124,250.00 to the YMCA Project through the Department of Community and Economic Development under the Neighborhood Assistance Program Tax Credit Program.

The Wayne County YMCA has outgrown the current historical building and needs a new facility as the current facility is becoming too costly to operate.

The Dime Bank believes in supporting our community by partnering with many non-profits. Chief Financial Officer Jeffrey Roche stated, “The Dime Bank aspires to be an integral part of the neighborhoods that we service and where our customers and employees work, raise their families, and live. We are proud to help create a modern, state-of-the-art facility for everyone to enjoy.”

“A community project of this size and scope would not be possible without the support of The Dime Bank. Their donation of $124,250.00 will enable us to complete phase 1 of this project which includes the development and completion of engineering/design work, site development plans, sewage design, and various permits. We thank The Dime Bank for their commitment and participation in this critical community project,” stated YMCA Board President Jennifer DeYoung.

SACF Launches Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy

The Scranton Area Community Foundation held a press conference on Thursday, December 8, 2022, at the Hilton Scranton Hotel & Conference Center to announce that it was selected to serve as a host site for the Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy, a fellowship program designed by the Aspen Institute designed to support leaders in workforce development committed to the advancement of the regional workforce ecosystem.

The Scranton Area Community Foundation was one of only eight organizations chosen from across the country selected through a competitive process to deliver an Academy in partnership with the Aspen Institute. Other cities selected include Tucson, Detroit, Cleveland, Memphis, San Antonio, Baltimore, and Buffalo.

The Workforce Leadership Academy will bring leaders – recognized as Fellows of the Academy – from across the local workforce ecosystem together for a year-long series of retreats, workshops, and action learning projects. Fellows work with leading practitioners throughout the country as they deepen networks; strengthen systems leadership skills; apply race, equity, and systems change frameworks to their work; and increase understanding of effective strategies and programs.  An advisory board comprised of regional experts will help to shape the Academy.

Eighteen to twenty-four fellows in Northeastern Pennsylvania will be selected through a competitive application process. The Scranton Area Community Foundation and its partners encourage senior-level managers from across the workforce ecosystem of nonprofit organizations, business associations, union-based training efforts, public agencies, and community colleges that have the authority to implement changes to apply.

Applications and Academy details are available online at

The deadline for application submissions is Thursday, January 26, 2023, at 5:00 pm. Interested applicants can learn more about the Academy on an informational webinar to be held on December 20, 2022. Details can be found at

The Northeastern Pennsylvania Workforce Leadership Academy is made possible by the generous support of The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation in addition to the Scranton Area Community Foundation.

“The Scranton Area Community Foundation has decided to host this important leadership academy because of the need for a cross-sector, collaborative workforce effort aimed at systems change in NEPA,” said Laura Ducceschi, President & CEO of the Scranton Area Community Foundation.  “We established NEPA Thrives, an equity-based workforce initiative, and the NEPA Workforce Leadership Academy is a key part of this focus area. Fellows will identify challenges within the workforce ecosystem and work to develop solutions in key areas.”

Geisinger elected for American Society for Clinical Pathology’s Choosing Wisely Champions

Geisinger Adult Gastroenterology and Laboratory Medicine were elected by The American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP) as one of their 2022 Choosing Wisely® Champions for advancing appropriate test utilization at the health system and demonstrating leadership of a local Choosing Wisely® effort.

ASCP’s Choosing Wisely® Champions program is part of ASCP’s broader Choosing Wisely® campaign, an initiative of the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation, which seeks to advance a national dialogue on avoiding unnecessary medical tests, treatments, and procedures. The program recognizes the efforts of dedicated pathologists and laboratory professionals for making informed decisions about laboratory testing. Recommendations improve patient care and reduce healthcare costs, and the Choosing Wisely® Champions encourage their colleagues to use the right test at the right time for the right cost.

“This award recognizes the work that our Geisinger adult gastroenterology and laboratory medicine teams do each and every day to stand out as a leader in the field,” said Amanda Haynes, DO, FASCP, Division Chief of Clinical Pathology Professional Services, Quality, and Operations, Laboratory Medicine at Geisinger. “This honor would not have been achieved without the dedication of all our team members. We strive to be innovative and effective in everything that we do, making better health easier for our patients.”

Geisinger Adult Gastroenterology and Laboratory Medicine launched a successful Choosing Wisely® campaign across the Geisinger system to address inappropriate use of fecal occult blood testing (FOBT). Using education and electronic tools, provider decision-making was guided toward ordering FOBT for its intended use of colorectal cancer screening in ambulatory patients.

“Identifying Champions and sharing their successes allows all of us to learn from their efforts to improve healthcare delivery,” said Lee H. Hilborne, MD, MPH, DLM(ASCP)CM, FASCP, chair of the ASCP Effective Test Utilization Steering Committee. “The Geisinger team is an exemplar of Choosing Wisely® values and the application of this effective test utilization initiative.”

WBS Penguins Holiday Hat Trick Package

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Lavelle Strategy Group NYC Art Exhibit

La MaMa Galleria is honored to present “Humanity & Divinity”, an art exhibition by Helen Lavelle. This show will be on view in the East Village Gallery at 47 Great Jones Street New York, NY (between Bowery and Lafayette Streets) from January 14 to February 4, 2023, Thursday through Sunday from 1-7 PM, with an opening reception scheduled on Saturday, January 14, from 5:30-8:30 PM.

A nationally recognized leader in the advertising industry, Ms. Lavelle’s drawings and paintings explore the artist’s personal journey through pain and vulnerability to resilience and grace. The exhibit is curated by C. Finley, founder of the Every Woman Biennial-NYC, London, LA.

Acknowledging that loss of life, the pandemic, political climate, racial hatred, war and economic uncertainty have given rise to unprecedented and unbearable pain, Ms. Lavelle’s work puts it center stage. But she does not stop there.

The exhibit, which includes both figurative and landscape pieces is designed to remind viewers that the path from humanity to divinity lies in a personal connection to nature. “Nature is our greatest teacher, Lavelle states. Life and death, love and loss, pain and promise…the opportunity to transform in the face of tragedy, to recover (as does nature) is cellular.” 

For Lavelle, painting is a spiritual process. Landscapes created in Ireland while experiencing extreme grief and sorrow express both heaviness and connection to universal energy.

As to her figurative work, Lavelle explains, “Connecting on a deeper level with nature and God allowed me to portray moments of human vulnerability that are real, raw and honest. I can barely look at them myself.”

Lavelle has had more than her fair share of grief, having lost multiple friends and members of her own family to addiction, to AIDs, and to the inability for many to move forward in life. She knows that art heals, brings forth light, even in the deepest darkness. 

An advocate for the arts in every genre, she understands that the arts help move people through life’s circumstances. Her hope is that through this exhibition, people will see something in themselves that is about transformation. 

Lackawanna College Receives Award Awarded From the City of Scranton

Lackawanna College was recently rewarded $15,000 from the city of Scranton as part of the American Rescue Plan Act funding.

The funding from the American Rescue Plan Act will be used to support the Lackawanna College Counseling Program facilitated by Lackawanna’s Student Wellness Office, helping cover the cost of mental health counseling sessions for current students.

The project director for the counseling program, Student Wellness Program Director Tierny Ulmer Cresswell, is excited about the program and the care it can provide, especially with the increased need for mental health services post COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to expand mental health services here on our campus for our students. Mental health services are imperative to getting our students to graduation,” Cresswell said. “Similar with what other institutions are seeing post COVID-19, the intensity of student challenges are becoming greater – adding this level of care is necessary for students success .”

The counseling program started the 2022 fall semester and is free for any current student to take advantage of both in person, with an on-campus therapist located in Angeli Hall, and online through telehealth. Students in the Sunbury, Lake Region, Hazleton, Tunkhannock and Towanda Centers can use this service virtually as well.

“Student response has been wonderful, we surpassed the expected number of students within the first two months – that showed us quickly how much it was needed,” Cresswell said. “We are grateful to be able to provide quality mental health services to students at all Lackawanna College campuses for free. These funds will assist us to remove barriers students often face when trying to access mental health services.” 

Lackawanna College will use the funding from the American Rescue Plan Act on July 1, 2023.

HNB Joe Tini Earns National Certification

Joe Tini, Marketing & Communications Specialist at The Honesdale National Bank, was recently awarded the Certified Financial Marketing Professional (CFMP) certification from the American Bankers Association.

“Earning the CFMP certification validates Joe Tini’s experience and depth of education in the bank marketing arena,” said bank President, and CEO, Thomas E. Sheridan Jr.

The CFMP certification is awarded to individuals who demonstrate excellence in the field of financial services marketing. To qualify for the CFMP certification, individuals must have certain levels of experience and education in the financial services marketing profession, pass an exam and agree to abide by a code of ethics. The CFMP exam covers many areas including financial principles, laws and regulations, market research, characteristics of marketing plans, and marketing components.

Financial services professionals, working through ABA, initiated the CFMP certification and seven others to establish meaningful standards of knowledge in specialty areas of the financial services industry. ABA Professional Certifications formally recognize those who meet these standards and meet professional continuing education and development requirements. 

Tini joined HNB in his current role in 2020. He is a graduate of Valley View High School and received his bachelor’s degree from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania. He is an avid outdoorsman who spends most of his free time fishing, mountain biking, boating, skiing, exercising, and traveling.