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local knowledge “ Working only with local people is a plus, in that Marquette knows firsthand about our company and reputation, which in our case made it easier to obtain favorable terms. “ Marquette had the flexibility to tailor loan terms to suit our needs. And they’re faster. We worked face-to-face, directly with the decision makers. Plus we were able to keep the money local; we didn’t have to go outside the market to get what we needed.”


Banking approvals in days, not weeks. Support you can expect when the unexpected happens. People who understand opportunities are fleeting and make yours a priority. Business bankers who don’t define success between the hours of 9-5 any more than you do. Local knowledge. It’s a difference you can expect when your decision is made by the area’s only hometown-headquartered bank.

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DESIGNED FOR SUCCESS How workspaces can drive growth.



PRESBYTERIAN SENIORCARE NETWORK Administrator Bobbie Gray shares how Presbyterian Homes of Erie, an affiliate of Presbyterian SeniorCare Network, is building a brighter future for senior living in northwestern Pennsylvania through a $23 million investment in construction and renovations.















See exclusive coverage of the 2016 Manufacturing Day celebration and MBA’s 111th Annual Event.

Amanda Brown Sissem, executive director of Erie Arts & Culture, provides an overview of the organization and how its Art & Industry Project is bringing together employers and educators to create art and educate students and the community about the history and importance of manufacturing.






READ ON THE GO! For the most current Business Magazine updates, visit


Why you should incentivize your employees to get healthier. David Weir


Executive Editor Karen Torres

Feature Photography Matt Kleck

Contributing Writers John Draskovic Alfredo Ortiz David Weir

Advertising Sales David Thornburg 814/833-3200 Design, Production & Printing Printing Concepts Inc.


Additional Photography iStock Photography Mark Fainstein Photography Christine DeSantis Casey Naylon Karen Torres Meghan Badolato

What you should consider when managing employees after a work injury. John Draskovic, Esq.



Guest columnist Alfredo Ortiz explains why employers should discuss bad government policy with employees.

On the Cover: Senior Director Bobbie Gray welcomes residents to the Woodside Place of Erie, a state-of-the-art memory care facility located in the Manchester Commons community, and part of a $23 million investment in construction and renovations at Presbyterian Homes. For full story, see page 4.

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Association is dedicated to providing information and services to its members that will assist them in the pursuit of their business and community interests. – Board of Governors


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© Copyright 2016 by the Manufacturer & Business Association. All rights reserved. Reproduction or use of editorial, pictorial or advertisements created for use in the Business Magazine, in any manner, without written permission from the publisher, is prohibited. Unsolicited manuscripts cannot be returned unless accompanied by a properly addressed envelope bearing sufficient postage. The magazine accepts no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts or artwork. The Business Magazine and Manufacturer & Business Association do not specifically endorse any of the products or practices described in the magazine. The Business Magazine is published monthly by the Manufacturer & Business Association, 2171 West 38th Street, Erie, Pa. 16508. Phone: 814/833-3200 or 800/815-2660.


See our 2016 Corporate Gift Giving & Event Planning Guide for your workplace’s holiday celebrations. • NOVEMBER 2016



Designed for Success


Now, more than ever, employers are looking closely at what influences their results — to optimize every process and to make the most of their resources. One such influence is workplace design, which can play a large part in the productivity, morale and a company’s overall culture. But is it really that important?

Some experts argue that office design directly affects employee health, well-being and productivity within the workforce. From architecture and lighting to furniture and computer equipment, all impact the varying job functions that employees carry out on a daily basis. According to the U.S. Workplace Survey 2016 by Gensler, one of the world’s largest architecture and design firms, optimal workplace design can be a key driver of organizational innovation. In fact, the company’s research uncovered a statistical link between the quality and functional make-up of the workplace and the level of innovation employees ascribe to their organization. In the survey of more than 4,000 workers across 11 industries, researchers found that the most innovative companies

provide their organizations with a diversity of well-designed spaces in which to collaborate and to focus, as well as empowering employees with the ability to work in a setting that best suits their work needs.

an affiliate of Presbyterian SeniorCare Network, as well as how educational design programs, such as the Art & Industry Project, are bringing together educators and employers in a powerful way.

According to the Gensler’s Workplace Survey, the most innovative employees have the option to work in a wide variety of spaces to maximum effect — whether they need an individual space to focus or “open office” to collaborate and learn a new skill.

In this issue, we’ll also examine workplace safety and training topics that can benefit your organization. The Manufacturer & Business Association (MBA), for one, offers a variety of professional development courses tailored to contractors and OSHA compliance topics. To learn more, visit

In this edition of the Business Magazine, we’ll explore some of the design changes that are impacting businesses today, such as the $23 million investment unveiled by Presbyterian Homes of Lake Erie,

Lay a Strong Foundation for Your Workforce Today! • NOVEMBER 2016




Senior Director Bobbie Gray welcomes residents to the Woodside Place of Erie, a state-of-the-art memory care facility uniquely designed for those with dementia and Alzheimer’s.

For more than 50 years, Presbyterian Homes of Lake Erie has been a provider of choice for senior living and nursing care in northwest Pennsylvania. But now, the community, an affiliate of the Presbyterian SeniorCare Network, has begun a new era with its $23 million renovation and expansion of its sprawling Manchester Commons community located on West Ridge Road in Fairview Township and upgrades under way at Elmwood Gardens in Erie and Oakwood Heights in Oil City. The most recent investment includes a complete overhaul of its Manchester Commons’ lounges, dining areas, courtyards and resident rooms, as well as a new, state-of-the-art Rehab Center of Excellence and the addition of its crowning jewel and Dementia Center of Excellence, Woodside Place of Erie. According to Senior Director Bobbie Gray, the entire community has been designed in the “person-centered” care model to give residents more choices in their programs and services in the comfort of a contemporaryyet-cozy neighborhood setting.



“It takes away that institutional routine and makes it more home-like,” explains Gray. “We thought of every detail when we created this.” Gray, who joined Presbyterian Homes in 2012 and has been a licensed nursing home administrator since 1983, says the building and renovations better reflect the vision and mission of the community and its parent company, Pittsburgh-based Presbyterian SeniorCare Network, of which Presbyterian Homes became a full-fledged affiliate in March 2015. Presbyterian SeniorCare is widely known for its wide range of senior living options and programs, serving more than 6,500 older adults through its 54 communities at 44 locations across western Pennsylvania. In 2006, it became the first Aging Services Network in Pennsylvania, as well as the third and largest in the nation to receive accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation FacilitiesContinuing Care Accreditation Commission — the highest level commendation that can be awarded to an eldercare provider.

“Our new brand is Presbyterian SeniorCare Network, and it really speaks to the fact that we are now part of the largest senior living provider in Western Pennsylvania,” explains Gray. “We offer a full continuum of services for senior living.” Administrators say Presbyterian SeniorCare has been instrumental in the planning and implementation of renovations at Presbyterian Homes, bringing a whole new depth of experience to its plans for the present and the future. As a matter of fact, Presbyterian Homes provides a wide range of options for seniors — from independent living, personal care and skilled nursing services, short-term rehabilitation and memory care services — the only facility in Erie to provide such services in both its personal care and skilled nursing settings. State-of-the-Art Memory Care Facility One of the most exciting additions to the Presbyterian SeniorCare communities has been the design of the 24-bed Woodside Place of Erie. Construction began in August 2014 and was completed in September 2015.

The innovative, dementia-specific community, tucked away on the south side of Manchester Commons, was modeled after the original Woodside Place that Presbyterian SeniorCare opened in 1991 and was one of the first residential communities of its kind in the United States designed to meet the needs of people living with Alzheimer’s and dementia. The “wow factor”: It looks like a house, complete with a front porch, contemporary decor, and personal touches and photos throughout. “The open kitchen and living room with a fireplace, it’s all very comfortable and cozy,” adds Gray.

the door may be a barrier for someone who wants to wander in,” explains Gray. “It is very specific, very calming, allows wandering and is a very therapeutic environment for those who have dementia.” In addition, every single one of the employees, all 22,000 in the Presbyterian SeniorCare Network, are trained in dementia care. “We think that makes a difference in the services we provide,” says Gray. “No matter where someone is employed, they have been trained in how to properly approach and respond to each person and their needs.”

Woodside Place, for instance, utilizes locked cabinets and large storage closets to do away with the hospital feel and hide the medical equipment often found in nursing home settings. Woodside Place also offers residents security and individual privacy with spacious, modern accommodations, which include private bathrooms with handicappedaccessible showers. Residents also have the ability to use secure, outdoor walking paths to travel inside and out.

Such personal service is not limited to residents either. Administrators plan to unveil the final piece of the renovation project during “Trees of Manchester,” a holiday event that displays trees decorated by Erie health-care providers from 2 – 6 p.m. December 8. At that time, the community will hold an open house for its Adult Day Services, which is connected to Woodside Place. Through the program, seniors can come a half day or full day, or a few days and enjoy the same amenities as a full-time resident during the week.

Built by local construction firm Renaud-Peck, every detail has been thoughtfully planned out. “We have Dutch doors for example, to people’s rooms, because just closing half

“You could come to us in Adult Day, then you could potentially move into Woodside Place, and then we have skilled nursing options,” explains Gray. “It’s a full continuum of care.”

Established in 1943, Presbyterian Homes of Lake Erie became an affiliate of Pittsburgh-based Presbyterian SeniorCare in March 2015. A faith-based network of communities, Presbyterian Homes offers independent living, personal care and skilled nursing services, as well as shortterm rehabilitation and memory care services. Its staff of nearly 500 employees supports more than 400 residents in three locations – Elmwood Gardens in Erie, Manchester Commons in Fairview Township and Oakwood Heights in Oil City. For more information, visit New Improvements and Services The construction of Woodside Place complements the numerous improvements made at Manchester Commons. In March 2013, the facility celebrated the opening of 64 modern, private rooms at its skilled nursing community and the unveiling of a new, 14bed, state-of-the-art rehabilitation wing in April 2014. “Creating this environment meant that people were going to live in a more home-like setting

Woodside Place of Erie is a deluxe addition to the Manchester Commons community on 6351 West Lake Road in Fairview Township, including spacious private rooms with full bathrooms, as well as contemporary kitchen and dining areas. • NOVEMBER 2016


Manchester Commons’ renovations include cozy lounge areas that open to tranquil courtyards, as well as modern living areas, where guests and visitors (like staff dog Sienna, shown here) can enjoy daily living. Also featured is the new Rehab Center for Excellence for those in need of short-term rehabilitation.

— they each have their own, private room, so they can decorate it,” says Gray. “People bring in couches and armoires. You can fit a lot of furniture in there and a lot of mementos and things you can’t personalize when you’re in a small, semi-private room.” The new design, in conjunction with Presbyterian Homes’ “person-centered” model, also means that residents are not restricted to rigid routines for eating, sleeping or daily activities. They can get up when they want, eat when they want and do what they want, according to their lifestyle choices. In fact, to ensure such freedom, a staff person called a “homemaker” mans the kitchen, and also provides activities, such as games or playing cards, when requested. “The residents really enjoy it, and if you want a grilled cheese at 2:30 in the morning,” says Gray, “someone can make you one.” Gray says the space where residents live reflects the way in which they live — what’s important to them and their lifestyle. “You really can’t do that, and you can’t change the task-oriented mindset of caregivers when you just go room-to-room, get up, and we all go to breakfast at 7 o’clock,” she says. “You can’t change that mindset unless you change the environment.”



It’s this kind of thinking that is used in Manchester Commons’ new Rehab Center of Excellence, as well. The rehabilitation center provides physical, speech/language or occupational therapy services in the comfort and convenience of a home-like setting for short-term stays from a hospital following an illness or accident. Through its MyLife program, Presbyterian Homes empowers participants to set the pace of their rehab journey. “So, if you come to us for rehab and your goal is to get back to riding your bike five miles a day, that’s a different approach we’re going to use than if you said, ‘You know what? I’m going to sit and read a book all day. I don’t need to do a lot of distance,’ ” says Gray. “It’s very much focused on that it’s your life. What do you want to get back to? What do you want out of this? It’s an approach that extends into what time do you want to get up? What time do you want your therapy? You know we don’t drag you out of bed at 7:30 for therapy if you like to sleep in.” Looking Forward For Presbyterian SeniorCare Network, collaboration, innovation, as well as benevolence are critical to moving Presbyterian Homes and its communities forward. “We’re always on the lookout for that

next step, that next program, that next thing that we can do to benefit,” says Gray. “And, also, the whole aspect of benevolence — that we’re not just a profit making entity. We take care of the folks who don’t have money, as well. Our goal, especially for the next few years, is to be an essential partner, not just to the hospital systems but also to all sorts of organizations — to be the provider of choice, and to be a uniquely different employer. We’re trying very hard to live up to that commitment, as well.” Indeed, the strength of the Presbyterian SeniorCare Network is its approach to building a brighter future for senior living and nursing care in northwest Pennsylvania. “I think people hear ‘nursing home’ or even ‘assisted living’ and they think, ‘Oh, you go there to die.’ But you really go there to live. It’s just another phase on life’s journey,” says Gray. “We really try to make it that way. I think people don’t realize just how much fun people have — the staff and the residents. The people, who work here, work here by choice because they enjoy it. There’s a lot of laughter. It’s not the depressing place that people think it is. We’re a community.” For more information, visit

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Art & Industry Project Creates and Educates Arts and culture are integral to our region. Diverse and unique offerings — museums, theaters and programs — enrich the community and make it a more attractive place to live, work and do business. Here, Amanda Brown Sissem, executive director of Erie Arts & Culture, provides an overview of the organization and how its Art & Industry Project is bringing together employers and educators to create art and educate students and the community about the history and importance of manufacturing. Erie Arts & Culture is 501(c)3 charitable organization that represents the collective voice of hundreds of creators, investors and volunteers. Tell us about the organization’s mission and how it got its start. The mission of Erie Arts & Culture is to strengthen the vibrancy and vitality of the Erie region and enrich the lives of our people through the advancement of arts and culture. We were established as the Arts Council of Erie in 1960 and rebranded as Erie Arts & Culture in 2014. What are the types of programs and resources that Erie Arts & Culture supports? 2017 will mark the 50th anniversary of the Arts & Culture Campaign, a collaborative fundraising effort that supports the Erie Playhouse, Erie Philharmonic, expERIEnce Children’s Museum, Erie Art Museum, Erie Maritime Museum/Flagship Niagara, Historical Society of Erie County, Lake Erie Ballet, and Dafmark Dance Theater. Additionally, Campaign dollars are coupled with revenue from the Erie Arts Endowment to support project grants in Erie County. We also help leverage special grants from the state for arts education and administer the state’s grant program. One particular program that has received a lot of attention is the Art & Industry Project. Tell us about the program and its purpose. The project is part of our Arts Education artist residency program and convenes

area manufacturers, faculty and students from Erie County Technical School and Teaching Artists. It is one part pipeline development, sharing trends and career benefits within the sector and reinforcing the soft and hard skills students need to excel. It’s also a history project, showcasing the stories and products created locally. Finally, it’s a creative process, leading students through the design, fabrication and installation of public art. Funding to begin this project came from a National Endowment for the Arts ArtWorks Grant, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, the United Way of Erie County, Erie Arts & Culture, and Education Improvement Tax Credit (E.I.T.C.) dollars donated by local businesses. Tell us more about each of the pieces that have been unveiled so far. A mural two stories tall and titled ‘Setting the Stage for Erie’s Future,’ adorns the east wall of the Erie Playhouse’s Rehearsal Hall and Scenic Shop, 1158 East 12th Street, the building that once housed Coyne Laundry. This student-led design focuses on how industry fueled the development of the city and the connection to our arts sector. The sculpture, ‘Fruits of Labor’ rests at 13th and Holland on the lot owned by Rick Griffith Properties and focuses on the role of labor in transforming our society from agriculture to industrialism. Artists Tom Ferraro, Ed Grout, Ron Bayuzick, Barbara Crone and Kathe Umlauf, as well as ECTS faculty and students and local

manufacturers, including Gene Davis Sales and Service, Erie Concrete & Steel Supply, Samuel, Son & Co., and Industrial Sales & Manufacturing collaborated to fabricate the piece. What’s next for the Art & Industry Project? A third artwork will be installed the rail bridge remnant located near Greengarden Boulevard and West 12th Street. The remnant is an important reminder of Erie’s push toward progress. It sits at the crossroads of our history and our future. Manufacturing continues to represent a significant portion of the region’s economy, but it is evolving. Art processes and products are providing the tools to understand and celebrate this evolution together. How can companies get involved? With the third piece just in the planning stages, we are looking for financial and in-kind product support from local manufacturers, as well as partners to share stories, products, expertise and connections. Interested companies should contact me at amanda@erieartsandculture. org or 814/452-3427 Ext.105. • NOVEMBER 2016


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Incentivize Your Employees to Get Healthier David Weir is the president of UPMC WorkPartners, that provides health and productivity solutions to high-performing companies throughout the United States. Its suite of services includes workers’ compensation, absence management, employee assistance programs, employer health services, health management and wellness, and consulting services. UPMC WorkPartners is part of the UPMC Insurance Services Division. Bottom line is, paying your employees to get healthier can get results, and it’s worth the investment. When employers offer incentives, for example, employee participation in health/wellness programs typically significantly increases. So it’s no surprise that incentivized wellness programs are becoming more popular each year, with some estimating that as many as 70 percent of large employers are currently offering financial incentives with their wellness program. The question remains, however, which incentive strategies are right for your organization, and which aren’t? Below are some considerations for employers looking to implement an effective health management and wellness incentive strategy. The carrot or the stick? As mentioned above, incentives can be effective in shaping certain health behaviors. Rewards, or

“carrots,” as well as penalties, or “sticks,” can be effective in certain situations. Behavioral economics research suggests that loss aversion may provide greater motivation to change than a positive gain of similar value; however, one must balance that potential gain with the type of incentive that would fit best in an employer’s culture. One must also carefully weigh the risks posed to the program from an employee and public perception perspective. Make the task clear and offer an incentive that is proportional to the task. Smaller and simple incentives tend to work best for one-time tasks, such as taking a health risk assessment or getting a health screening. These are single, standalone actions. Incentives successful at helping employees with ongoing, sustained behavior change, such as completing a multi-session behavior change program or achieving a certain health outcome,

require higher value incentives and more sophisticated, periodic delivery to be effective. Award incentives early and often for multiple actions or more difficult tasks. When incentives work for promoting longerterm behavior change, it’s usually because individuals are awarded immediately and frequently — for example, at the start of the program, halfway through, and again at program completion. Individuals will tend to discount the value of the incentive if they perceive it to be too far in the future. Get the word out loud and clear. Strongly communicating your incentive strategy to employees is key. Regarding health risk assessment completion, for example, one study demonstrated that strong communication could increase participation by as much as 25 percent, given the same type (non-cash, cash, or benefit integrated incentive) and denomination of incentive. Leverage the “fun” factor with healthy competitions and reward drawings. Tap into your leaderships’ and your employees’ competitive side by leveraging performance-based drawings and rewards throughout your incentive campaign. This has been shown to drive higher rates of participation for equivalent amounts of investment. One way to accomplish this is to structure quarterly drawings for individuals who achieve a certain level of participation to qualify. Setting these qualifications slightly higher each quarter can push individuals to participate earlier and more often throughout the program year. Build an environment and culture that is conducive to improving health. As you’re setting your incentive strategy, don’t overlook the opportunity to maximize the investment by instituting supportive environmental and cultural changes that will align with your health objectives. These changes are often very low or no cost, but can pay dividends in the participation and overall success of your program. Simply showing visible leadership support for the initiatives through a CEO letter or video, or through visible senior leadership participation in the activities can significantly improve employee participation. For more information, visit • NOVEMBER 2016


LEGAL BRIEF | WORKERS’ COMP work injury, and the employer has the burden to show the availability of work within the employee’s physical limitations. Conversely, when the misconduct occurs after the work injury, or when the employer learns of the misconduct only after the work injury and immediately discharges the employee, the employee has the burden to prove a compensable injury and that the injury continues to cause disability throughout the pendency of the claim petition proceedings. Examples of post-injury conduct resulting in a denial of benefits include: • Failure of employee to obtain mandated occupational certification;

Managing Employees After a Work Injury? Consider This! John Draskovic is a senior partner with the law firm of MacDonald Illig Jones & Britton LLP, a member of the firm’s Litigation and Labor Departments, and chairman of the firm’s Workers’ Compensation Group. He practices exclusively in the areas of civil litigation and workers’ compensation. As an employer, are you doing all you can to protect your company from the impact of workers’ compensation claims? Injuries will happen, but here are some of common issues to consider when managing employees after a work injury. Disciplining or Discharging an Employee from a Modified Duty Job An employee who has established entitlement to partial disability benefits from a work injury will generally continue to

receive partial disability benefits by virtue of his loss in earning capacity, even though he was subsequently discharged for willful misconduct, because the loss in earning capacity or partial disability continues. Whether the same employee may receive total disability benefits depends upon whether the employer can demonstrate that suitable work was available or would have been available but for the discharge of the claimant due to the claimant’s lack of good faith. Where the employer alleges that the employee’s loss of earnings is the result of a post-injury involuntary discharge, the employer bears the burden of establishing the employee’s bad faith conduct and ongoing work availability. When an employee who has returned to light-duty work is discharged for misconduct predating the work injury and the payment of benefits, the employer generally is not relieved of its burden to show work availability. Instead, the employee’s loss of earnings is deemed to have resulted from disability due to the

• Employee fired for mishandling funds; • Employee fired for poor, unproductive attitude; • Employee fired for inability to obtain CDL; • Employee discharged for reporting to work under the influence of alcohol; • Employee fired after criminal conviction. Retiring While Receiving Workers’ Compensation Benefits An employer is not required to show the availability of suitable work if the employer proves by a totality of the circumstances that the employee has voluntarily removed herself from the workforce. An employer may meet its initial burden of proving a voluntary retirement by showing: 1) there is no dispute that the employee is retired; 2) the employee has accepted a retirement pension; or 3) the employee has accepted a disability pension and refused suitable employment that falls within her restrictions. There is no presumption that an employee collecting a disability pension has withdrawn from the workforce, rather it is the employer’s burden to prove that the employee on a disability pension intends not to return to work. If this initial burden is met, then the burden shifts to the claimant to establish that: 1) the employee is seeking employment after retirement; or 2) the employee was forced into retirement because of the work injury. If the employee can establish retirement is causally related to the work injury, benefits will continue. For more information, contact John Draskovic at or 814/870-7653. • NOVEMBER 2016



ST. PATRICK’S HAVEN BREAKS GROUND ON NEW SHELTER IN ERIE A groundbreaking ceremony for a new St. Patrick’s Haven was held September 15 in Erie. The new building will sit on two plots of land at 239 E. 12th Street, replacing the old shelter at 147 E. 12th St. Officials estimate construction will cost around $500,000 and should be done by the end of the year. The current shelter, which will be demolished, houses 21 single homeless men, ages 18 and older.

St. Patrick’s Haven launched the Restoring Hope Building Campaign in order to raise funds for the new facility. Fundraising began in 2014 when Roar on the Shore®, a charitable outreach of the Manufacturer & Business Association (MBA), chose St. Patrick’s Haven as the motorcycle rally’s designated charity. In October 2014, a $125,000 donation, including $50,000 in proceeds from the rally and the value of vacant lots donated by Rick Griffith of Rick Griffith Properties, was presented to St. Patrick’s Haven for the future shelter construction. The “Haven,” which was founded in 1984, is an outreach ministry of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Northwestern Pennsylvania that serves homeless men in the inner city, many of whom are veterans. For more information, visit

From left: St. Patrick’s Haven Executive Director Sister Mary Fromknecht, SSJ, Haven Board President Norm Zymm and former Roar ® Board and MBA Chairman Bill Hilbert Jr. announce plans for the new homeless shelter in Erie.


It’s time to fall back! Download and post the Manufacturer & Business Association’s (MBA) free time-change poster, available at, and remember to turn your clocks back one hour when Daylight-Saving Time ends at 2 a.m. Sunday, November 6. The poster is sponsored by EnergyAdvisors, a member service of the MBA.



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Contact Judy Rosatti at 814/833-3200, 800/815-2660 or email



ATHENA INTERNATIONAL EXECUTIVE ADDRESSES LEADERSHIP LUNCHEON Andrea Stevenson Conner, interim executive director of ATHENA International and daughter of ATHENA Erie Chair Linda Stevenson, was the featured speaker at the 2016 ATHENA Erie Women’s Leadership Luncheon on September 15 at the Ambassador Banquet & Conference Center. During the second week of September, more than 150 communities across ATHENA International’s global footprint celebrate ATHENA Women’s Leadership Day by hosting a variety of events geared toward building leadership skills for women. ATHENA Erie is comprised of dedicated volunteers representing a diverse group of professional men and women committed to supporting the leadership of women and inspiring women to achieve their full business and professional potential.

PLASTEK GROUP CHAIRMAN EARNS LEGACY AWARD Joe Prischak, chairman of Plastek Group, received the Legacy Award during the Commitment to Erie Business Awards on September 14 at the Bayfront Convention Center. The awards, which are sponsored by The Erie TimesNews and, were created to honor employers who have invested in their customers, employees and the community. Over the past 30 years, Prischak has stewarded the growth and development of Plastek, taking it from a handful of workers to over 2000 employees. In 1991, he was honored with the “Master Entrepreneur of the Year” Award, which is sponsored by Inc. magazine, Merrill Lynch Financial Services and the national accounting and consulting firm of Ernst and Young. He has served on the Hamot Corporators Board and currently serves on Penn State Behrend Council of Fellows. Prischak was a driving force behind the development of the Plastics Technology Program at Penn State University and has supported many other organizations.

In June of 1999, Plastek opened its first facility outside the United States in the United Kingdom followed by the opening of a plant in Brazil in May 2000 and an additional plant opening in Hamlet, North Carolina in July 2010.

BOLLINGER ENTERPRISES NAMES EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR William A. Clark, D. Ed. has been named as the executive director of Bollinger Enterprises, Inc. (BEi), headquartered in Warren, Pennsylvania, which provides manufacturing/labor support for business and vocational rehabilitation services for individuals with disabilities. In his role, Dr. Clark provides the oversight of rehabilitation, production, fiscal managers and services to ensure compliance with all applicable statutes and regulations. He also works with the board of directors to develop, implement and execute programs that further BEi’s mission to serve people with disabilities. Prior to being appointed executive director of BEi in June 2016, Dr. Clark was superintendent of the Warren County School District, an educational consultant for the Solanco Area School District, and superintendent at Manheim Central and Milton Area School District. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Pennsylvania State University, a Master of Education degree from Shippensburg University and a Doctor of Education degree from Pennsylvania State University. While working in administration, he taught undergraduate students math at Pennsylvania State University and graduate students school law. He has also taught graduate level classes for Wilkes University including School Law and Social Foundations and Pennsylvania Inspired Leadership (PIL) School Law, Ethics, and Leadership for Lebanon Valley College. He has 32 articles published in various professional journals. In 2007, he was awarded the Pennsylvania Association School Administrator Ralph Morgan Award for Advancement in Vocational Education and in 2008 he received the University Council for Educational Administration Excellence in Educational Leadership Award.


Richard Small, End Nipper Machine/ Finishing Cell Operator at Channellock Inc., won the 13th annual Falcon Award during the company’s 130-year anniversary lunch celebration recently at Waldameer Park in Erie. The Falcon Award is the crown jewel of the Falcon Program, a multi-faceted initiative implemented in 2003 and designed to reward, encourage and celebrate Channellock Inc. associates at work, at home and in the community. The Falcon Award is presented to the one associate who best demonstrates the ideals of the program: speed in action through productivity; far-sightedness and clear vision in making everyday decisions that impact the company’s bottom line; job performance at work; leadership skills through participation in community organizations; and a clear understanding and commitment to Channellock’s “Vision Blue,” which states that “communication, commitment, cooperation and constant improvement yield success.” Small’s dedication, positive attitude and missionary work are examples of how Channellock has benefitted from his exemplary service. Small’s peers nominated him for the award, highlighting his 27 years of service and commitment to the company.


Jim Farrell, director of Operations at Panache Salon and Spa, 2501 West 12th Street in Erie, was recently appointed to the Pennsylvania State Board of Cosmetology in Harrisburg.

The State Board of Cosmetology regulates the practice and licensure of estheticians; nail technicians; cosmetologists and teachers of cosmetology; and cosmetology salons and schools in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Board promulgates and enforces regulations for the examination and licensure of applicants to practice or teach cosmetology and to manage schools of cosmetology. The Board also issues apprentice permits in appropriate circumstances as well as licenses to perform nail technology only, natural hair braiding only or practice esthetics only. The Board prescribes disinfection standards to be followed to prevent the creation or spread of infectious diseases. • NOVEMBER 2016


Our Mission Pro-Business Pro-Growth Pro-Opportunity

As businesses continue to battle rising health care costs, high energy prices and complex legal compliance issues, the challenge to compete, grow and succeed is greater now than ever before. That’s why our mission is resolute – to deliver services that lower the cost of doing business, ease the burden of compliance and increase productivity for our members. And we have. Visit our website at today and see what our members located throughout 27 counties in Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio have discovered – greater savings, better value and more opportunity!

ERIE HEADQUARTERS 2171 West 38th Street, Erie, PA 16508 Phone: 814/833-3200 or 800/815-2660 • Fax: 814/833-4844 HARRISBURG OFFICE 123 State Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101 • Phone: 717/525-7213 • Fax: 717/525-7214

Meet the Highmark Cancer Collaborative. A new collaborative that unites our patient-centered health coverage with Allegheny Health Network, the region’s top-rated * large health system for cancer care, and world-renowned cancer research institution Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center, providing second opinions and access to early phase clinical trials. Learn how we can help your employees and business by visiting


*ComparionÂŽ Medical Analytics, 2016 National Quality Rating Database. Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.



1317 West 12th Street, Erie PA FOR LEASE: $5 psf per year

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240 West 11th Street ERIE, PA 16501 (814) 454-1800

2915 McCain, Erie PA FOR LEASE: $3.30 psf


Employers Should Discuss Bad Government Policy With Employees Alfredo Ortiz is the president and CEO of the Job Creators Network, where he has led the defense of small businesses from the onslaught of bad government policies. Ortiz has testified before legislative committees about the impact of bad government policy on job creation. He speaks frequently to business organizations across the nation about the need for job creators to seize responsibility for defending free enterprise. In addition to voting for president and congressional leaders, voters in numerous states will consider numerous policy proposals on their Election Day ballot. In at least five states, voters will consider dramatic minimum wage increases. Colorado and Maine voters, for instance, will be asked whether they support a $12 entry-level wage. Employers understand how such proposals would have significant negative consequences for both their businesses and employees. But employees, some of whom have fallen for the bill of goods sold by activist groups about the benefits of dramatic entry-level wage increases, have probably never heard how a minimum wage increase would negatively affect them. Popular culture certainly doesn’t convey it. The Job Creators Network’s (JCN) Employer to Employee (E2E) program aims to fill this void. It encourages employers to talk with their employees about how bad government policies negatively affect them. It equips employers with the tools to educate their staff about the impact these policies have on paychecks and promotion opportunities. This effort can make a huge difference in societal well-being. Employers are in a unique position — by being respected authority figures — to instruct their staff on the real-world implications of rose-colored rhetoric. In today’s age of cynicism and questioning of authority,

employers are one of the few figures left — along with coaches, mentors, and spiritual advisers — who still have the power to make a difference in people’s thinking. Armed with E2E materials, employers can point out the negative side-effects of activist movements like dramatic minimum wage increases. It may be the first time employees have ever heard the other side of the argument. The best defense against bad government policies is a well-informed public, starting with employees on up. This process may even inspire employees to become more informed and involved with legislation directly affecting their own welfare. Employers also should educate their employees about how bad government policies can specifically hurt small businesses, especially their own. Small businesses drive the American economy, providing half of all jobs and two-thirds of net new jobs. Providing a stable and vibrant climate for small business growth is vital to everyone. To highlight the outsized impact of small businesses, JCN recently launched the Bring Small Business Back (BSBB) campaign. This campaign is traveling the country identifying the challenges facing small businesses and identifying solutions to overcome them. Times are certainly challenging; only one in five small businesses plan to hire additional employees over the next year, and two-thirds think it is going to be more difficult to do

business in than the last, according to a recent nationwide JCN poll. Small businesses cite overregulation, overtaxation and a lack of access to credit as the biggest hurdles they face. Mandates for dramatic increases in the entry-level wage are a chief example of such a burdensome regulation, especially for small businesses operating on small margins and with big labor costs. To address the over-taxation aspect, JCN is supporting the Bring Small Businesses Back Tax Reform Act (H.R. Bill 5374), recently introduced by Representative Randy Hultgren (R-IL), which would significantly reduce the burden levied on small businesses. This bill would reduce small businesses’ tax burden by about 40 percent, allowing them to hire more employees to expand their firms. Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy. To keep them flourishing, the public must resist bad government policies that hurt them. JCN’s E2E program seeks to do just this, by equipping employees with the information they need to make informed decisions about bad proposals like dramatic increases in the entry-level wage. Employers have nothing to lose and everything — perhaps even their businesses — to gain by implementing it. For more information, visit • NOVEMBER 2016


e.e. austin & son


Erie Veterans Stadium Erie, PA

110 Years

General Electric Refrigerator Building Erie, PA

of building northwest pennsylvania & southwest new york

Penn State University – Behrend Campus

Chautauqua Institution

It is with great pride and honor that we celebrate E.E. Austin & Son’s 110th anniversary. Companies that reach such a landmark universally share certain traits, such as honesty, integrity, and a consistently high level of service that meets their customers expectations. Our clients come back to us time and again for these very reasons and we are grateful for their support.


St. Bonaventure University – The William F. Walsh Science Center

it’s the austin difference

contractors & construction managers since 1906

Ready Mix Concrete Plant–Circa 1952


Erie City Water Authority – Chestnut Street Pumping Station

HR CONNECTION | WORKPLACE TRENDS OSHA OFFERS TIPS TO PROTECT WORKERS IN COLD ENVIRONMENTS With the onset of cold weather, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is reminding employers and workers to take necessary precautions, such as those listed on OSHA’s Cold Stress Card, to prevent and treat cold-related health problems. Workers in construction, commercial fishing, maritime and agriculture are among those who need to take precautions. Prolonged exposure to freezing or cold temperatures may cause serious health problems such as trench foot, frostbite and hypothermia. In extreme cases, including cold water immersion, exposure can lead to death. Danger signs include uncontrolled shivering, slurred speech, clumsy movements, fatigue and confused behavior. If these signs are observed, call for emergency help.

Create a Monster of a Team Through Input, Recognition The recent passing of the hilarious actor Gene Wilder has renewed interest in the classic comedy, “Young Frankenstein.” I heard a great story about Mel Brooks, the famous director of the film, where he talked about a well-loved scene from the movie. Brooks wanted to cut the scene where Dr. Frankenstein and the monster tap dance to “Puttin’ on the Ritz.” His team member, the young Wilder, was adamant about keeping the scene in the movie. Brooks, as the boss with the ultimate decisionmaking power, was skeptical but eventually agreed. When Mel made the decision to use the sequence, he was quoted as saying, “You know, Gene, I’m really glad you argued for it, because it turns out to be the best scene in the whole movie. Maybe you were right.” This is a perfect example of two very important aspects to the kind of teamwork that leads companies

OSHA’s Cold Stress Card provides a reference guide and recommendations to combat and prevent many illnesses and injuries. Available in English and Spanish, this laminated fold-up card is free to employers, workers and the public.

successfully into the future: 1) seeking and accepting valuable input from team members, and 2) using praise and recognition for their efforts.

For free copies of OSHA’s Cold Stress Card, go to OSHA’s website, or call 1-800-321-OSHA.


We all enjoy and realize the value in team-building exercises, such as outings away from work, group training that utilizes games and personality assessments, and even eating lunch together (cited in research led by Kevin Kniffin of Cornell University). But the dayin and day-out benefits of caring about your employees, taking team members to new levels of ability and leadership, and getting ideas from your team so management has the opportunity to say “You were right!” are time-tested tools that never go wrong.

In the construction industry, contractors who invest more in worker safety achieve better bottom-line results than contractors who spend less on safety, according to recent research. More than 250 contractors participated in the survey, which was conducted by Dodge Data & Analytics in partnership with the Center for Construction Research and Training and United Rentals. Contractors who scored higher on the safety culture spectrum reported greater business benefits from their safety investments than contractors who scored on the lower end of the spectrum. • Improved project quality: 88 percent (high end) versus 56 percent (low end)

These activities build cohesive and goal-oriented teams that are essential to a company’s future. The time to lay the foundation is now.

• Improved staff retention: 79 percent (high end) versus 45 percent (low end) • Increased project return on investment: 75 percent (high end) versus 38 percent (low end) • Greater ability to attract new staff: 67 percent (high end) versus 27 percent (low end) “The significance in the shift of how jobsite worker involvement is seen underscores our need to make safety value-driven and personal,” James A. Dorris, vice president – environmental, health & safety at United Rentals, said in a press release. “When workers are made a part of the process and are provided the tools and training they need to succeed, safety becomes recognized as the one thing that sets them — and the company they work for — apart from others. It’s what makes them world-class.”

Lisa DeFilippo is a training specialist at the Manufacturer & Business Association. Contact her at 814/833-3200, 800/815-2660 or • NOVEMBER 2016



HOW CAN WE INCREASE AWARENESS OF OUR COMPANY BRAND WHEN TRYING TO ATTRACT TALENT? One of the best ways to attract top-quality talent is through clearly communicating what sets your company apart from others in the marketplace. Your strategy will depend on the type of image you are attempting to show, the organization’s culture and the type of applicants you are trying to attract. When trying to increase awareness of your company brand, consider how likely it is that potential candidates know of the company. Engaging in charitable and community projects and maintaining a social media presence are all ways to expand your organization’s brand recognition among potential job candidates.

Top Trends Shaping The Workplace and HR


According to the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM’s) Special Expertise Panels, tighter labor markets, economic uncertainty and globalization are important issues that will shape the workplace and the HR profession in coming years. Some of the most recent challenges that have been identified by these SHRM panels include:

When developing new benefits and programs for your employees, your need to know what your employees are looking for. One way to find out those answers is to survey your employees and ask what could help them ease the stress of trying to find a balance between their work and personal demands. Some potential benefits and programs may include: providing flex time; telecommuting; reduced work schedules; or maybe even on-site child care. Some of these may not work for your company, but the possibilities are endless. When you do implement new benefits, make sure to revisit them, as the workplace and the workforce change.

• Increased Competition for Talent: Companies are finding it more difficult to attract the best employees. In an effort to build a strong company brand to attract employees, HR professionals are highlighting cultures that show the fundamentals of a great place to work, including social responsibility initiatives, strong worker safety and security measures, and an atmosphere of respect in the workplace. The strong competition for talent is also influencing compensation and benefits strategies. • Developments in Technology: With new developments in technology, comes increased flexibility and productivity in the workplace. However, such new developments also create challenges with managing employees and team building efforts. • Economy: The economy will certainly influence hiring strategies and other HR decisions. Also, with increased globalization and political unrest in some regions, these will continue to create uncertainty with the economy. • Demographic Changes: These changes include the aging workforce, different generations working together, family and parental roles, and increased cultural diversity. It is impossible for an HR manager or professional to know everything; however, these insights from the experts help give an idea of which trends are likely to have the largest impact on HR and leveraging them can help companies with strategic planning.

Tammy Lamary-Toman, JD, PHR is labor and employment law counsel for the Manufacturer & Business Association. Contact her at 814/833-3200, 800/815-2660 or



Anchored by Family, we’ve continually “built our reputation from the ground up”

since 1984

Building Systems, Inc. 7335 Old Perry Highway Erie, PA 16509 (814) 864-4851

Pictured: Travis Schaaf, Joe Spaeder, Nanette Spaeder, Dan Schaaf, Karen Fields, Joan Schaaf, Tim Schaaf, Debbie Hodinko, Keith Hodinko, Matt Hodinko


Resolving Your Top 3 Business Challenges

Developing New Customers in New Markets:

Our internal technology and market scout, along with external consulting affiliates, use proven methodologies to find new markets and grow existing revenue streams. “The research and report identifying 14 potential markets for our industry, and 10-20 prospects in each market, is extremely beneficial for future sales and business growth. We are now getting business from companies we didn’t know existed.” -Jason Gabler, Advantage Metal Powders, Inc

Recruiting Quality Employees:

The STEM Manufacturing Internship connects manufacturers’ innovation needs with resources at regional colleges and universities, and offers opportunity to evaluate potential employees. “NWIRC provided us a valuable mechanical engineering candidate who has allowed us to grow business, manage costs, and improve through-put.” -Molly Kelsey, Global Fabrication

Continuously Improving Operations and Reducing Costs:

Whether through robotics, automation, new IT-based systems, or Lean and Six Sigma methods, we have over 25 years’ providing improved operational impact for our clients. “Our employees now have a fresh, clean approach. 5S has given them a goal for excellence and this training moves them in that direction.” -Al Barry, Keystone Automatic Technology

Can we help you with these or other challenges? Call 814.898.6891 to connect with one of our Strategic Business Advisors. • NOVEMBER 2016


2016 Corporate Gift Giving & Event Planning Guide Employers are always looking for creative ways to say thank you to their clients and employees during the holiday season. Here are a few companies to consider for your seasonal celebrations.

casual-chic • wines

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Buy One, Get One 50% Off Gift Card Sale November 25 th Through December 23rd Erie ’s p re mie r f ine d ining e s t a b lis h me nt o f f e rs f re s h f o o d q ua lit y a nd p re p a ra t io n f ro m o ur k it c h e n t o y o ur d inne r t a b le . Mi S c uz i’s p riv a t e d ining ro o ms a re a v a ila b le f o r c o mp a ny p a rt ie s , p riv a t e me e t ing s o r f a mily g a t h e ring s a nd o ur g if t c e rt if ic a t e s a re p e rf e c t f o r c lie nt s , e mp lo y e e s , c o w o rk e rs a nd f a mily . When you want to be the best, you give the best! 2641 Myrtle Street. Erie, Pa 16508 814-454-4533

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-­‐Gift card  must  be  of  equal  value  to  receive  50%  discount-­‐                                                                                                     • NOVEMBER 2016



OCTOBER 5, 2016

The 2016 Manufacturing Day (MFG Day) celebration was held on October 5 at the Bayfront Convention Center in conjunction with Tech Fest, the Manufacturer & Business Association (MBA), Erie Regional Chamber and Growth Partnership, National Tooling and Machining Association, Career Street and Advanced Diversified Manufacturing Industry Partnership, along with more than 25 sponsors. See for photos.

More than 3,000 students, educa tors and business and community leaders attended the third annual Manufacturing Day celebration in Erie.

MFG Day 2016 was made possible by the support of more than 25 area sponsors.

MBA Chairman Don Hester welcomes the thousands of guests to 2016 MFG Day.

than 50 The Exhibit Hall featured more -related exhibits manufacturing and technology and demonstrations.

Easton LaChappelle, co-founder of Unlimited Tomorrow, was this year’s luncheon keynote speaker, sponsored by Howard Industries. Howard Industries CEO Gary Schneider, employees and guests welcome Easton LaChappelle to Erie.

The 2016 Patrick R. Locco Award winners were announced at this year’s event, including (from left): Brik Bateman, Mercer County Career Center; Ashley Cass, Erie County Technical School; Kyle Breitfelder, Crawford County Area Vocational-Technical School; Kyle Hurd, Corry Area High School; and, Brandon Tenon, Central Career and Technical School. Students enjoy lunch in the Ballro om before the afternoon presentation.

Students got a firsthand look at the many products made in north west Pennsylvania.

ation skills at the MBA’s Participants tested their innov r contests included the Othe enge. Chall low hmal Mars MFG Day App Survey. MFG Day Trivia Challenge and

The futuristic IMTS vehicle was one of the popular attractions. MFG Day gave area manufacturers the chance to talk with students about their companies, products and careers.



year’s Widget Financial sponsored this

MFG Day Photo Booth.

A sold-out crowd enjoyed the Manufacturer & Business Association’s 111th Annual Event featuring “Shark Tank” star Robert Herjavec, founder of Herjavec Group, on October 5 at the Bayfront Convention Center. For extensive photo coverage, see treated to As a fin-tastic gift, guests were Business a complimentary edition of the a custom, Magazine’s Annual Report and a Betta fish. sea-inspired fish tank including

The Bayfront Convention Center was transformed into an ocean theme for the event.

The highlight of the night was the keynote address by Robert Herjavec.

“Mr. Wonderful” Kevin O’Leary made a special cameo at the event, introducing fellow “Shark Tank” star Robert Herjavec.

Association Chairman Don Hester thanks Immediate Past Chairman Bill Hilbert Jr. and the MBA Board for their service.

The Association thanks representatives from major sponsors (from left) RidgU-Rak, Inc. and UPMC Health Plan, and event sponsors Greenleaf Corporation, Howard Industries, Logistics Plus, LORD Corporation, MacDonald Illig Attorneys, McInnes Rolled Rings, PHB/Reddog Inc., PSB Industries Inc. and PNC Financial Services.

This year, Annual Event guests got an up-close look at some of the MFG Day exhibits as part of the Member Reception in the Exhibit Hall.

The Association honored the longt ime business leaders who passed away in the past year.

Lawrence T. Persico, bishop of Erie, led the invocation. The Association introduced the 2016-2017 Board of Governors.

Boards presented a $40,0 00 The MBA and Roar on the Shore for 2016 rally charity, donation to CEO David Gonzalez round Project. the St. Martin Center New Playg

Christine Tombaugh, executive director of the Mercy Center for Women, thanks the MBA and Roar® Boards for selecting the Center as the Roar’s® 2017 designated charity. The rally is set for July 12, 13, 14, 15 and 16 in Erie.

Gifted performer Marlana VanHoose sings the National Anthem.

version of rator y School, who hold their own Students from Merc yhurst Prepa Herjavec before the event. Mr. meet to e chanc a got ” “Shark Tank, • NOVEMBER 2016


1440 W. 21St Street • Erie, Pennsylvania 16502 • 814-459-8551

Erie Insurance Armory

East Perry Square

Erie Federal Credit Union

Bayfront Parking Facility

2006 Haybarger Avenue • Erie, Pennsylvania 16502 • 814-790-5828

Home Goods Store

Mercyhurst Prep

Sarah Reed

Prep-Villa Event Center


The only health insurer in Pennsylvania to receive the J.D. Power award this year. It takes a lot for a health plan to be ranked highest in member satisfaction according to J.D. Power. They talk to members from more than 135 health plans nationally to get their impressions on a variety of factors that affect the member experience. UPMC Health Plan was not only ranked highest in overall member satisfaction in Pennsylvania, we also achieved the highest score in customer service and coverage and benefits. Which means our members are the ones who get the real reward. To learn more, visit

“Highest Member Satisfaction among Commercial Health Plans in Pennsylvania� UPMC Health Plan received the highest numerical score among commercial health plans in Pennsylvania in the J.D. Power 2016 U.S. Member Health Plan Study, based on 31,867 responses from 9 plans measuring experiences and perceptions of members surveyed October-December 2015. Your experiences may vary. Visit

November 2016 Business Magazine  

Administrator Bobbie Gray shares how Presbyterian Homes of Erie, an affiliate of Presbyterian SeniorCare Network, is building a brighter fut...

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