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Would You Tell a Friend About the Chamber? By Chad Amond, President Westmoreland County Chamber of Commerce


t one of our recent Chamber events, there was plenty of discussion about gauging the effectiveness of customer service programs. After wading through all the rhetoric on the subject, one quickly ascertains that there is only one question that really matters when assessing the experience a customer has with your product or service.

trying to make things more complicated than they need to be. We’ve all spent valuable time reinventing ways to attract new customers, when all the while we could have been using that time to better serve the customers we already have. Why not let your best customers work for you by providing you with referrals? Referral business is widely recognized as the least expensive and most effective way to build your customer base – especially for small to mid-sized businesses.

Would your customer recommend your product/service to their top client, close friends or members of their family? And, if not, what would you have to change to obtain that recommendation?

So the next time you decide to implement a new customer service program or incentive program, take a moment to pause and reflect. Will your new idea work to better serve your current customers and help you get their referrals? If not, you might want to rethink Seems fairly obvious, right? But often times we your plan. lose sight of the answers that are right in front This simple approach aimed at assessing cusof our face. Far too often we spin our wheels

tomer satisfaction holds true in almost any organization – including the Chamber itself. Just like you, the Westmoreland County Chamber is always striving to build its base of satisfied members (like you). And, our best source for prospective new members is a referral from a current member (yep, like you!). With that in mind, we’ll do a little bit of practicing what we preach. If you know someone looking to grow their business that might benefit from Chamber membership, please share their name with us. If you’re not ready to give us a referral, let us know why so we can earn that level of trust and improve your experience with Chamber membership. After all, this is your Chamber and we’re here to help you gain the greatest ROI through your relationship with Westmoreland County’s largest and most active business association.




HOLIDAY BASH & BUSINESS EXPO Wednesday, December 7 • 5-8 PM Ramada Hotel & Conference Center, Greensburg $25 for members | $35 for future members Register online at

IT’S A HOLIDAY TRADITION! Come network with fellow members, enjoy delicious hors d’oeuvres and a holiday cocktail at the cash bar, and perhaps win a door prize from one of our exhibitors. Listen to live holiday entertainment while you stroll from booth to booth and maybe even do a little holiday shopping. Celebrate the season Chamber-style at the Holiday BASH & Business Expo. CORPORATE SPONSOR:


2017 WESTMORELAND COUNTY PRAYER BREAKFAST Friday, January 27 • 7-9 AM $20 per person | $15 for student sponsorship Register online at

KEYNOTE SPEAKER: Father Frank Ziemkiewicz, O.S.B. (See bio on next page)

For over 40 years, the Westmoreland County Prayer Breakfast has featured spiritual readings and messages of hope from prominent leaders representing Business, Education, Government and Labor. This year, the event will focus on saluting those who serve, including armed forces, fire, police, EMTs and all first responders. PRESENTED BY:


Saluting Those Who Serve


s t n e d Stu

of the Month

ANNA BILLEY, Mount Pleasant Student of the Month for September, was honored at a luncheon on October 18 at Leo’s Pub & Grille in Mt. Pleasant. Pictured (from left) are Leyla Pilon-Sinclair, Director of Membership Services for the Westmoreland County Chamber; Caprice Mills of Mount Pleasant Township Supervisors, Sponsor; Jodi Ovitsky, Mount Pleasant Teacher; Anna Billey, Student of the Month; Frank Puskar and Duane Hutter of Mount Pleasant Township Supervisors, Sponsor.

KEERA FRYE, Southmoreland Student of the Month for September, was honored at a luncheon on October 25 at The Filling Station in Mt. Pleasant. Pictured (from left) are Leyla Pilon-Sinclair, Director of Membership Services for the Westmoreland County Chamber; Keera Frye, Student of the Month; Toni Wilson of Somerset Trust Company, Sponsor; and Charles Brittain, Southmoreland Teacher.

Father Frank Ziemkiewicz to Speak at Westmoreland County Prayer Breakfast The 42nd annual Westmoreland County Prayer Breakfast will be held on Friday, January 27, 2017. The focus of the event will be “Saluting Those Who Serve” as we welcome Father Frank Ziemkiewicz as keynote speaker.

Vincent College students in 1991, 1995 and 1998 with the presentation of a Student Government Award. He has been a member of the Saint Vincent College Board from 1999-2011 and 2012-present.

Father Frank Edward Ziemkiewicz, O.S.B., was born July 17, 1949 in Schenectady, New York. He is a son of the late Frank Paul Ziemkiewicz and the late Lucille Catherine (Stabile) Ziemkiewicz. He has two brothers, Dr. Paul Frank Ziemkiewicz of Morgantown, West Virginia and Alexander Paul Ziemkiewicz of Pittsburgh; and two sisters, Susan Marie In 1999 he was named pastor Huemmrich of College Park, Maryland and the late Eleanor Marie of Saint Marys Parish, St. Marys, Maliszewski. Pennsylvania, where he served as the Archabbot's Regional Coordinator for Benedictine Parishes in St. Marys. He attended St. Scholastica Parochial School, Aspinwall, and is a 1967 graduate of Fox Chapel Area High School. He earned a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh in 1971 and a master of divinity degree from Saint Vincent Seminary in 1983.

He was commissioned in the Army (engineering branch) in 1971 and was on active duty in Germany from 1972 to 1974 and at Fort Stewart, Georgia, from 1975 to 1978. Upon leaving active duty after entering the monastery, he received a commission in the Army Reserves and followFather Frank made simple profession of vows on July 10, 1979 and sol- ing his ordination, transferred to chaplain branch. From July of 2005 to emn profession of vows on July 10, 1982 at Saint Vincent Archabbey January 2006 he was deployed to Afghanistan serving principally in the Basilica. He was ordained a priest on May 26, 1984 at the Archabbey Kandahar region. From January through June 2006, he was assigned to Basilica before the late Bishop William G. Connare of Greensburg. the Multi-National Corps - Iraq, Chaplain's Office, Baghdad where he Father Frank has served as a dormitory prefect (1981-1991, 1992-1994); served as the senior priest in the country. He retired from the Army Reserves in February of 2007 with the rank of Colonel. In July 2007, he director of the physical plant at Saint Vincent (1984-1994) and was Dean of Students from 1994 to 1999. Father Frank served as a member was named headmaster of the Benedictine Military School in Savannah, of the Opportunity Program advisory board, and was honored by Saint Georgia and Prior of Benedictine Priory.

Member Moves & Milestones

Each month we celebrate grand openings, ground breakings, anniversaries and other significant events involving our members through various ribbon cutting events and plaque presentations.

Jenifer Amundson and the staff at Spa 309 Salon & Boutique celebrated their Grand Opening in Greensburg on October 20.

Westmoreland County Community College held a ribbon cutting ceremony on October 24 to dedicate its new Instructional Design Lab.

On October 21, Jay & Joanna Bell cut the ceremonial ribbon and celebrated the Grand Opening of Bella Terra Vineyards in Hunker.

Angela Rose-O’Brien and her host of volunteers celebrated the 10th Anniversary of Angela’s Angels on November 2 in Latrobe.

On November 5, Diane Ruggiero & family hosted a Ribbon Cutting & Grand Opening at Ruggiero Kitchen, Bath & Flooring Design Studio in Greensburg.

Anthony Fazio, Michelle Liscio and staff hosted a Ribbon Cutting & 1 Year Anniversary Celebration at Fazio’s Hair Designs | Day Spa in Mount Pleasant on November 10.


This infographic was distributed at the Annual Business Meeting & Awards Luncheon in October to demonstrate the reaching impact made by the Chamber and our members.





TOM WHYTSELL, Pratter Meet our Member Spotlight for December: Tom Whytsell, Market Manager for Pratter. Pratter is a medical transparency company that offers an employee benefit solution which uncovers the in-network pricing variation for common medical procedures. “Using our service could mean the difference between paying $525 at Location A and $7,615 at Location B for the same Chest CT scan (with contrast),” Tom explains. “Knowing which amount you and/or your insurance company will be charged per procedure is the only way to proactively reduce total insurance spend, employee out-of-pocket and annual increases.” Tom joined Pratter in 2016 and is responsible for increasing market share within the Pittsburgh market and beyond. “I am privileged to be able to provide a solution to our community that has the ability to save families and organizations thousands of dollars while also uncovering hidden pricing within our healthcare system,” he says. He also takes pride in being part of a software start-up out of Greensburg that offers an excellent work-life balance. When asked what he likes the most about being involved with the Chamber, Tom answered, “The Chamber has been an incredible asset to my professional career over the past 8 years and has provided me with lifelong connections and friends, not to mention excellent business opportunities. Having been a member of every large chamber in the Pittsburgh region, I can say without a doubt that the Westmoreland County Chamber is the most active and helpful group which has always provided me with an incredible return on my investment.”

A Message from the Chairman Dear Fellow Chamber Members, As we close out the calendar year, I wish to thank you for supporting the Chamber with your ongoing involvement in our many programs. For me, I have truly enjoyed the many networking opportunities and the fellowship of the business community. Yet, some of the most valuable dividends from my Chamber membership have been the educational sessions in our board room and at MBPA. As you plan your year end and forecast for the year ahead, do you find yourself seeking more knowledge and insight on how to make your type of business better? If so, I want to hear from you. I am also curious to know what is the best business book you read or listened to in 2016. While this is a selfish request, one of the great strengths of our group is the capacity to share ideas and insights. Please email me at with your questions or suggestions for an even greater year ahead. I wish all of you a safe and healthy holiday season.

Outside of work, Tom enjoys spending time with his wife and daughter in the great outdoors, playing music or taking in a beer or wine festival. Find out more about Pratter at

James W. Creenan Westmoreland County Chamber of Commerce Board Chairman Attorney, Creenan & Baczkowski, PC


The Westmoreland County Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce the following businesses as NEW MEMBERS of our organization: Barry Reeger Photography Barry Reeger 246 Lakeview Drive Jeannette, PA 15644 724-600-9832 Photography, Videography, Audio Recording

John Kramer 5109-B Route 30 Greensburg, PA 15601 724-600-7220 Casual Dining

Flat Tire Co. Bike Shop Ashley Reefer 212 East Pittsburgh Street Greensburg, PA 15601 724-691-0966 Specialty Stores & Services

Kris Feliciani State Farm Insurance Kris Feliciani 410 Burton Avenue, Suite A Youngwood, PA 15697 724-925-1700 Agents & Offices (Finance & Insurance)

Cadillac Laser Center

Maroadi Transfer & Storage Inc.

Erin Mullen 400 Depot Street Latrobe, PA 15650 724-532-0404 Beauty Salons, Spa Services

Mary Maroadi 1801 Lincoln Highway North Versailles, PA 15137 412-824-4420 Moving & Storage


Who in your organization should apply? Can this be added to your 2017 budget? Cost is $1,500 per participant. Will your organization help by sponsoring the program?

Molyneaux Tile, Carpet & Wood Robyn Jendeski 330 Greengate Center Circle Greensburg, PA 15601 724-836-8160 Carpet, Floor, Window Coverings

Performance Kayak, Inc. Hansel Lucas 334 Buddtown Road West Newton, PA 15089 724-987-3597 Specialty Stores & Services

Signs of Excellence Ken Kelsey 4225 Old William Penn Highway Murrysville, PA 15668 724-325-7446 Signs & Banners

T. Barko Agency Ted Barko 621 South 5th Street Youngwood, PA 15697 724-635-3945 Agents & Offices (Finance & Insurance)

Leadership Westmoreland to Begin Taking Applications in January What will our future leadership look like? Who will move Westmoreland County and our businesses forward? We believe it's critical that today's leaders look over their shoulders and identify those individuals to whom the torch will soon be passed. But they can't do it on their own. They need help on their journey toward gaining the skills and experience needed to assume tomorrow's leadership positions, which is why Leadership Westmoreland was relaunched in the fall of 2015. We now invite you to participate in the development of tomorrow's leaders by playing a pivotal role in Leadership Westmoreland's Class of 2017-18. A cohort of approximately 20 professionals will begin their leadership development journey in September 2017 with a retreat, setting the stage for a series of monthly sessions. Each session will have a particular focus and will be held at various locations around the county to help immerse participants in the focus topic. By graduation, 10 leadership competencies will be assimilated. Team projects will provide an impactful and practical learning experience in community stewardship and leadership by service as well as reinforce facilitative leadership skills. Please consider allowing a member of your team to apply for this program and become an even more valuable asset to your organization and to all of Westmoreland County. Applications will be available in January.

CHAMBER CENTRAL 2016 Board of Directors

Westmoreland County Chamber of Commerce

James Creenan - Creenan & Baczkowski, PC (Chairman) Michael Storms - Elliott Group (Vice Chair) Michelle Ivill - General Industries (Treasurer) Janet Corrinne-Harvey - Trib Total Media (Secretary)

241 Tollgate Hill Road | Greensburg, PA 15601 Phone: 724-834-2900 / Fax: 724-837-7635


Linda Dickson - Redstone Presbyterian SeniorCare Walt Henry - THE pt GROUP Physical Therapy Christina Jansure - Jeannette Specialty Glass John Kline - S&T Bank Terri Knupp - West Penn Power/First Energy George O’Brien - YMCA of Greensburg Ron Ott - Excela Health Dr. Gennaro “Jamie” Piraino Jr. - Franklin Regional S.D. Steve Rennekamp - Energy Swing Windows Rich Rosky - First National Bank James Smith - Economic Growth Connection Dr. Tuesday Stanley - Westmoreland County Community College Clair Ward - Valley School of Ligonier *Ann Nemanic - Laurel Highlands Visitors Bureau *Jason Rigone - Westmoreland County Industrial Development Company *Bill Ferri - Ferri Pharmacy *Michael Egan - CBL Associates/Westmoreland Mall *Tony Vecchio - Northwood Realty * Ex-officio member

Chamber Staff Chad Amond - President Joanne Pearson - Director of Operations Leyla Pilon-Sinclair - Director of Membership Services Tricia Thomas - Director of Communications & Event Planning Grace Markum - Leadership Westmoreland Facilitator

Building Business. Connecting Communities. Empowering Everyone.

Chamber Central December 2016