By CHRISTINA L. MOSS
Clarion News writer
The Clarion Area Chamber of Business and Industry held its annual awards dinner March 9 at Clarion University.
Five winners were announced for 2018 awards as follows:
Business Education Partner of the Year
Highland Oaks at Water Run ensures education is provided to community members regarding topics in healthcare, options for services in Clarion County, Veteran’s Affairs benefit changes, various chronic disease management techniques and seasonal subjects of importance, all provided both in the community and at the facility itself.
Highland Oaks at Water Run partners with Clarion University to provide students with experience opportunities in the field. In 2018, approximately 12 rehabilitative science students were provided with service learning hours at their facility and organized hours so students were able to interact with many residents at a time.
An internship program was established specifically targeting Clarion University students. Through the newly established program, five interns and four co-op students completed their field experiences in various departments and specialty services throughout the recipient’s organization.
Highland Oaks at Water Run works closely with the faculty of the College of Health and Human Services to provide the educational experience necessary to help students develop their skills and understand the requirements of the interested occupation. Fourteen first and second year students in the rehabilitative sciences program received 12 service-learning hours each during the fall semester of 2018.
Currently, the recipient employs 24 students: four local high school students which include three students from the Clarion County Career Center, one student from Edinboro University, one student from Robert Morris University and 18 students pursuing degrees in nursing or rehabilitative science at Clarion University.
Business of the Year Economic Development
Clarion Psychiatric Center has been a major regional resource for children, adolescents and adults in the community for 30 years.
A $12 million expansion adds an increased capability of helping Clarion County residents, a conference center for Mental Health training for treatment providers in the area, 36 new acute inpatient beds and an expanded workforce adding 70 new employees in 2018.
The recipient showed their understanding of the need to improve upon the local economy by hiring local construction companies and contractors for as much of their expansion project as possible including Rankin’s Excavating, The EADS Group, M&B Services, Hager Paving and Mobilcom.
Douglas L. Sharrar Volunteer of the Year
Ms. Kimberly Titley was born in Clarion, the daughter of Lloyd Sr. and Peggy Bachman. She has three older siblings, Ken, Dan and Deb and a younger brother, Lloyd Jr.
Titley has been serving on the Clarion Area Chamber of Business and Industry Board of Directors since 2013. During her time on the board, Titley has served on almost every committee at the Chamber. She was co-chair of the Autumn Leaf Festival in 2016 and festival chair in 2017.
Titley volunteered to co-chair the Christmas committee and help organize the parade in 2017 and 2018. She built and donated games for the Touch-A-Truck and Kid Carnival events during the Autumn Leaf Festival in 2018. Titley volunteered the use of her own games for both the I Love Clarion event and the Clarion Barbecue Festival for several years.
In addition to her volunteerism at the Chamber, this year’s recipient has been donating her time, efforts and resources to many other organizations for many years.
She started and led a Brownie Troop from 2000 to 2001 and returned to volunteer with several Girl Scout Troops from 2006 to 2017.
She has been involved with Once Upon a Christmas for many years.
Titley was a volunteer parent and instructor with the Tempest Drill Team from 2003 to 2011 and hosted the Haunted Trail at Wolf’s Camping Resort from 2006 to 2017 which provided proceed donations to the Tempest Drill Team, Dog Tags and the Union School District Music Association.
Titley was a volunteer with the Fellowship of the Clover 4-H Club from 2005 to 2013 and the Keystone Music Association from 2010 to 2012.
She is one of the first to offer a helping hand any time the Chamber staff reaches out to the board of directors for volunteers and is always willing to offer ideas as well as potential solutions to problems when needed.
Stephanie Wilshire got her start at Clarion State College where she was a German major, during which she studied for a summer in Germany. Immediately after college she managed the Arco self-service gas station in Clarion and eventually moved to New Bethlehem where she was a substitute teacher and taught German classes at Redbank High School. Wilshire then returned to school where she received her Master’s degree in Rehabilitation Sciences.
In 1977, Wilshire began as an outreach worker at what is now the Clarion Area Agency on Aging and is now the executive director. During her time there, she has accomplished many things including the push for the Clarion Main Street Center which helped move the organization from a county agency to a private group. In the last year they have opened a new headquarters on Route 322 east of Clarion. She will be retiring this year after over 40 years of service.
Her passion for helping the elderly goes beyond her job at the Agency on Aging and has been very beneficial to the community. She was a key member in starting the Senior Wellness Council in 2007 and has been the council vice-president since its inception. The council holds two events each year bringing social, recreational, spiritual and educational activities, free of charge, to an average of 230 seniors in Clarion County and the surrounding areas.
Wilshire obtained a state grant to provide education to seniors and put $10,000 of it towards the Senior Wellness Council.
The recipient is actively involved with her church, was the fifty-sixth president of the Clarion Rotary Club in 2016-2017, and has served on the Clarion Hospital Foundation board where she also helps with scholarship applications through the foundation.
She and her husband Ron have four children. Hilarie is an Elementary Music Teacher in London with three grandchildren: Abbey, Caleb and Isabella. Adam is a licensed Professional Counselor in Martinsburg, Allison is a Data Analyst in Pittsburgh and John is an Autism Support Teacher in Hershey.
Citizen of the Year
Tracy Myers graduated from Franklin Regional High School where she was involved in theater and the yearbook committee. She then attended Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a dual major in psychology and criminology, then later also entered the nursing program graduating with a bachelor’s of arts in criminology, in psychology and a bachelor’s of science in nursing degree in nursing.
She began her career in nursing at the Roxborough Memorial Hospital in Philadelphia in 1984. She worked as a staff nurse and nurse manager on the medical surgical floor. In 1988, she moved to Lancaster and worked at the Community Hospital of Lancaster in the same position before bringing her talents to Clarion County in 1993.
For the next ten years she raised her two children and was very involved with the Parent Teacher Association at Immaculate Conception and the Clarion Hospital Ambassadors.
In 2003, she took a position at Cancer Care Specialists in Franklin. Her employment was eventually transferred to UPMC and she was moved to the Radiation Oncology Department at Clarion Hospital from 2007 to 2009 where she then applied for and accepted the Nurse Manager position at the Cancer Center at Clarion Hospital and Internal Medicine and continues to be an asset there today.
She is noted for many accomplishments at the Cancer Center. One of the greatest was her vision to bring Radiation Oncology back to Clarion Hospital after UPMC pulled their equipment out of the unit. Myers helped with or attended every fundraising event held for the campaign which raised funds for a $2.5 million dollar linear accelerator.
Myers also created The Patient Care Fund which helps patients who are struggling to pay utility bills, buy groceries or purchase gasoline for transportation to and from treatments.
She put forth significant efforts in helping to create The Clarion Sunshine Project, a non-profit foundation to help patients with unforeseen and expensive costs associated with co-pays and out-of-pocket expenses insurance companies do not cover.
To the community she is the heart, soul, blood, sweat and tears of the Cancer Center. The staff and patients alike feel that it has become an outpatient healthcare facility of excellence because of her dedication and passion.