Great Dane in Elysburg, manufacturer of 53 foot dry van trailers announces the promotion of Lorena Kutza-Porzi to the position of materials manager. Lorena joined the Great Dane team in July of 2015 and has been a great asset to the company.

Lorena’s journey with Great Dane started out as a buyer/planner and then she was promoted to a materials management supervisor where she supervised the entire materials team. She has been an integral part of the success of the materials department since the startup of the Elysburg facility in 2016 and she will continue to make the materials department outstanding as the materials manager.

Born and raised in Elysburg, she is a local resident and an active part of various community organizations. She holds a master’s of business administration degree and 26 years of supply chain experience.


On Jan. 22, the SEDA-COG board of directors voted to hire the new executive director, John A. Brown.

He was the founder/CEO of John Brown Leadership Solutions LLC and previously held the elected position of Northampton County Executive, where he managed a $400 million budget and 2,200 employees. Prior, he served as the mayor for the borough of Bangor.

Brown will begin transitioning into his new role, under the direction of current executive director, Bill Seigel. Brown will serve as sequent executive director until Seigel retires on March 13.

Seigel has worked at SEDA-COG for 39 years. “I am excited about the future of SEDA-COG under John’s leadership. He is an achievement-oriented manager with extensive experience in both large and small municipal governments as well as the private sector,” Seigel said.

Brown has a vast background in management, finance, and an ability to develop high-performance organizations. He has been recognized for successfully leading initiatives that foster multi-municipal and public-private cooperation.

“I look forward to working with the talented staff at SEDA-COG and building and forging new relationships with counties, federal, state and local officials, local businesses and residents, to improve our 11-county region,” Brown said.


Jim Blankenship has been named PennDOT District 3 Employee of the Year for 2019.

He is an Information Technology (IT) Generalist working in the IT Unit. He is responsible for a wide range of technical support and services in the district and county offices.

He provides software applications support, construction field office setup, teardown and support, and network troubleshooting.

His skills and expertise in these areas are highly valued. He consistently maintains a professional attitude and responds quickly whenever there is a technical issue that needs his attention, a PennDOT spokesman said.

A district employee reported that he was available during the evening by phone to troubleshoot an issue with equipment the employee was using during a public meeting. Jim’s help outside normal work hours allowed the presentation to proceed on time.

He is a seven-year PennDOT employee, lives in South Williamsport with his wife Susan Guinter, son Mark, stepson Trevor Effen and stepdaughter Devan Guinter. 


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