Leadership Ohio Valley class looks to the future following completion of program

LEADERSHIP GRADUATES — Members of the Class of 2022 of Leadership Ohio Valley gathered at Williams Golf and Country Club Sunday for a graduation luncheon, marking the completion of their program year. Graduates include, from left, Rachael Ferrise, Jacob Keeney, Sarah Cale, Tiffany Gale, Tiffany Frohnapfel, Nick Travis, Lorie Terry, Melissa Veltri, Sammi Giannamore, Chris Krishak, Thomas Grossi, Amy Granato and Melinda Howell. -- Craig Howell

WEIRTON — A new group of potential leaders is stepping forward to put their stamp on their community’s future.

For the last seven months, the 14 members of Leadership Ohio Valley have learned about the community, themselves and opportunities for them give for the benefit of others. Sunday afternoon, with a luncheon at Williams Golf and Country Club, their initial journey came to an end.

“This is the last official group meeting of Leadership Ohio Valley,” said Brenda Mull, president of the Weirton Area Chamber of Commerce, which organizes the program each year. “It comes to a close today.”

In welcoming the class for its graduation, Mull encouraged them to take time to reflect on their experiences, to think on their thoughts of leadership and how they may have changed over the last several months, what they have learned about themselves and the relationships they have formed.

Mull praised the group’s determination and creativity as they worked through the program’s various sessions and organized a community project to build a blessing box for the Salvation Army in Weirton, noting there were many options discussed for the project, some vast in scale, but their ultimate choice will provide an opportunity to help residents of the community for years to come.

“The smallest things can end up being big things,” Mull said.

She encouraged the graduates to believe in themselves, telling them through that belief, they can accomplish anything they set their minds to.

The class also heard from John Greco, third-generation owner of Greco-Hertnick Funeral Home, who spoke of his family’s 100-year-old business, as well as the importance of community service.

He explained the traditions in his family of hard work, finding ways to help and serve others, having a passion for your work and the importance of education.

Those traditions, he said, are continued now with both his family and his staff, noting he always looks at the skills of the people he hires, and encourages them to take an active role in their communities and the industry.

“I love my community. I love my job. I’m very fortunate,” said Greco, who also was part of the inaugural Leadership class in 1993.

Graduating members of the 2022 class of Leadership Ohio Valley are Sarah Cale, Top of West Virginia Convention and Visitors Bureau; Rachael Ferrise, West Virginia Northern Community College; Tiffany Frohnapfel, Eastern Gateway Community College; Tiffany Gale, Miss Tiffany’s Early Childhood Education House; Sammi Giannamore, S.M. Magnone, CPA; Amy Granato, Weirton Madonna High School; Thomas Grossi, Weirton Geriatric Center; Penny Hamilton, Giometti Catering; Melinda Howell; Jacob Keeney, Business Development Corp. of the Northern Panhandle; Chris Krishak, City of Weirton; Lorie Terry, Crown Cork & Seal; Nick Travis, Rotary Club of Weirton Heights; and Melissa Veltri, Starvaggi Industries.

Class coordinators were Sarah Farran and Brandon Palmeri, and session advisors included Carole Scheerbaum, Will Beaumont, Debbie Watkins, Clayton Henderson, Crystal Harbert, Pam Makricosta and Marvin Six.


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