St. Marys native and author Kathleen Valentine has always loved books, and says she was influenced to write due to the many tales she heard while growing up in her hometown.
"I write because I love to tell stories," Valentine said. "I credit much of this to growing up in St. Marys, where there were so many storytellers. I remember sitting on my grandmother's porch, or in my dad's shop, or my mother's kitchen, listening to aunts and uncles and neighbors telling stories about so many things.
In working as a music therapist and music teacher, Lori D'Amore-Morefield, a St. Marys native and current resident of Newbury Park, Calif., has learned the power of song.
While D'Amore's musical abilities and related occupations have taken her across the country, it is in St. Marys where she says her passion for the art form took root. She credits the late Kronenwetter and the late Nick Sinibaldi with "instilling that love of music in my life."
Over the past 14 years, St. Marys native Rich Yavorsky has played an integral role at National Instruments as a senior software engineer.
At the Austin, Texas-based company, Yavorsky, 36, manages a team of software engineers who are responsible for National Instruments' installer architecture.
"Hundreds of engineers for dozens of projects at work rely on our architecture to solve various integration and distribution problems," Yavorsky explained. "If you've ever installed any software from National Instruments (LabVIEW, LEGO Mindstorms, etc.), you've passed through my team's work."
St. Marys native Gina Wade is used to seeing the big picture, whether in her previous career as a top-level human resources manager or her new one as a photographer.
A 1992 graduate of St. Marys Area High School and a 1996 graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Human Resource management, Wade would later earn an MBA from Point Park University (Pittsburgh) in 2000. She chose human resources (HR) as a career while still in college.
St. Marys native Judy Lee Schreiber will soon be in some very impressive company when she travels to Music City to be honored by the Country Music Hall of Fame.
The trip to Nashville, Tenn., will honor Schreiber's musical group, "Betty Amos With Judy And Jean," for their decades of dedication to promote excellence in country music. The ceremony will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 12 at the Country Music Hall of Fame Auditorium.
The group, comprised of Schreiber, who goes by Judy Lee onstage, and sisters Betty Amos and Jean Amos, have recorded and performed all over the country.
Johnsonburg native Joshua Gigliotti is a proud member of the United States Marine Corps and was recently selected for promotion to Staff Sergeant.
Currently stationed in Okinawa, Japan, Gigliotti serves as the Armory Chief for 7th Communication Battalion, III Marine Headquarters Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force.
"I went to Johnsonburg (Area) High School, straight into the Marines after school, and went into the small arms tech/repair field," Gigliotti said. "My career is 'Weapons Tech,' also known as 'Armorer.'
Matt Engel's natural curiosity for technologies and business combined with his background as a chemical engineer has provided him with the ideal characteristics required in his career as a supply chain manager.
Longtime educator and St. Marys native Richard J. Rupprecht loves being in the classroom-- and his dedication to teaching has resulted in a very prestigious professional acknowledgement.
Rupprecht, a faculty member at Jamestown Community College (JCC), recently received the 2012 State University of New York (SUNY) Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching.
â€śI've been here for 36 years at Jamestown Community College and I've had just an absolutely amazing career,â€ť Rupprecht said.
Talk to Ridgway native Linda Scott for a while and you will quickly be able to see that she isn't one to let grass grow under her feet; in fact, for a long time she preferred the sky to the ground as a helicopter pilot in the U.S. Army.
As jazz legend Duke Ellington said, "Music, of course, is what I hear and something that I more or less live by. It's not an occupation or profession, it's a compulsion."
For Andy Weis, a St. Marys native now living in Monterey, Calif., his career as a professional musician and drummer, drum teacher, vintage drum collector, expert, and restorer, is the result of a lifelong compulsion, one which began as a child living on Windfall Road in St. Marys.