Scranton Area Community Foundation Receives National Recognition

The Scranton Area Community Foundation recently received reaccreditation with the nation’s highest standard for philanthropic excellence. National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations® establish legal, ethical, and effective practices for community foundations everywhere. “Meeting the National Standards benchmarks is a rigorous, comprehensive process,” said Randy Royster, board member of the Council on Foundations. “This accreditation is a significant accomplishment that indicates the Scranton Area Community Foundation demonstrates a commitment to transparency, quality, integrity, and accountability as it carries out its mission.”

The National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations® program requires community foundations to document their policies for donor services, investments, grantmaking, and administration. With over 500 community foundations accredited nationwide, the program is designed to provide quality assurance to donors, as well as to their legal and financial advisors.

“This is critically important to our donors,” said Laura Ducceschi, President and CEO of the Scranton Area Community Foundation. “When people make a charitable bequest or establish a fund, they are putting their trust in us to help carry out their legacy. They are counting on us to steward the investment wisely, honor their charitable wishes and, in some cases, provide lifetime income to a loved one. The National Standards accreditation says all of our practices are of top quality and ethical standards, and worthy of our donor’s trust.”

The Scranton Area Community Foundation works to meet critical community needs and support local causes, programs, and organizations. From improving access to equitable transportation; transforming the lives of women, girls, and their families; building the capacity of nonprofit organizations; advancing various causes in animal welfare; and ensuring all residents have access to safe and healthy housing, the Scranton Area Community Foundation is dedicated to helping to improve the quality of life in Northeastern Pennsylvania.  

The Scranton Area Community Foundation offers a range of charitable funds, allowing donors to advance a cause, support an individual organization, provide flexible support for community needs, or recommend individual grants. In addition to affirming the organization’s philanthropic services, the reaccreditation validates the Scranton Area Community Foundation’s grantmaking practices for the nonprofit community.

“Our National Standards reaccreditation is a significant accomplishment,” said Barbara O’Hara, Scranton Area Community Foundation’s board chair. “When people trust the Scranton Area Community Foundation with a charitable bequest, to establish a fund, or set up a charitable gift annuity, they do it knowing that we have met rigorous standards for donor services, investment management, grantmaking, and administration.”

National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations® is the first program of its kind for charitable foundations in the United States.

The Scranton Area Community Foundation is on a mission to enhance the quality of life for all people in Northeastern Pennsylvania through the development of organized philanthropy. With nearly $90 million in assets under management and more than 300 charitable funds, the Scranton Area Community Foundation distributed over $6 million in grants and scholarships in 2022. The Foundation has served as a steward, grantmaker, charitable resource, and catalyst for change since 1954. The Foundation leads various initiatives including Women in Philanthropy, the Center for Community Leadership and Nonprofit Excellence, NEPA Moves, and the NEPA Animal Welfare Collaborative. Additionally, the Foundation hosts and facilitates NEPA Gives and the NEPA Learning Conference. More information about the Scranton Area Community Foundation can be found at

The Community Foundations National Standards Board is a supporting organization of the Council on Foundations and is responsible for the quality, value, and integrity of compliance with National Standards. For more information on the National Standards Board, visit its website at

Marywood University Wind Symphony Earns National Recognition

The Marywood University Wind Symphony is being nationally recognized as a featured ensemble at the Small Program Showcase during the 2023 College Band Directors National Association Conference, which will be held February 15-18, 2023, at the University of Georgia in Athens, GA.

Selected by blind peer review, audio excerpts of the Marywood Wind Symphony’s performances from recent concerts will be played, and F. David Romines, D.M.A., director of bands and co-chairperson of the Music, Theatre, and Dance department at Marywood, will be speaking about specifics related to the band program during the “Small College Program Audio Performances” session at the conference on Saturday, February 18, 2023.

“This is a great way to recognize the wonderful music we are making that might otherwise go unnoticed,” said Dr. Romines.

Marywood University is the only educational institution in Northeast Pennsylvania that offers Bachelor of Music degrees, and students are given the opportunity to perform locally, regionally, nationally, and globally. For more information on music programs at Marywood University, please visit or contact the Office of University Admissions at or (570) 348-6234.

Commonwealth Health Earned National Recognition

Regional Hospital of Scranton and Wilkes-Barre General Hospital have earned national recognition from the American College of Cardiology (ACC) in U.S. News & World Report’s 2023 “Best Hospitals” guidebook. ACC uses this publication to highlight hospitals and health systems that implement high standards in patient care and protocols to ensure best cardiovascular outcomes are delivered to every patient, every time.

Commonwealth Health’s two hospitals are recognized for their participation in four ACC registries, honored with four accreditations and Regional Hospital of Scranton has achieved a HeartCARE Center designation. Regional Hospital of Scranton and Wilkes-Barre General Hospital are the only hospitals in Northeastern PA with this level of commitment to proven quality heart programs.

“We are proud of this recognition,” said Dr. Nishant Sethi, Regional Hospital of Scranton Heart & Vascular Institute interventional cardiologist. “This national recognition demonstrates the level of commitment our entire team has for delivering quality care to heart patients in our local community.”

In the publication, the ACC recognizes all hospitals and facilities that participate in National Cardiovascular Data Registries (NCDR) or have received an accreditation or certification from ACC Services.

ACC’s NCDR is cardiology’s most established, comprehensive registry offering. Participants are committed to ensuring evidence-based cardiovascular care, improving patient outcomes and lowering health care costs. Facilities achieving an ACC accreditation are committed to establishing a method for sustainable quality improvement.

Marywood University Wind Symphony Members Earn National Recognition

Five members of the Marywood Wind Symphony recently participated in The College Band Directors National Association Eastern Division (CBDNA-E) Intercollegiate Band. The students were selected through a process that included video submissions of solo performances, a dossier of related activity, and director recommendation.

The Marywood students rehearsed for two days in Baltimore, MD, at The Peabody Institute of John Hopkins University under the artistic leadership of Dr. Carolyn Barber, who serves as Professor of Music and Director of Bands at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Glenn-Korff School of Music. The concert was presented on Saturday, February 19, in the Miriam A. Friedberg Concert Hall for the membership of the CBDNA-E.

Marywood participants included (pictured left to right in attached photo):

Lilly Vito • Clarinet • Music Therapy
Elizabeth Vito • Tenor Saxophone • Music Education
Lia Schwenk • String Bass • Music Education
Madelynn Ross • Bass Clarinet (principal) • Music Education
Gabriella Comes • Clarinet • Music Education