WESTERN PA. Sharon fills post in development

The new director has served in city and county political positions.
SHARON, Pa. -- Joseph F. Fragle is coming back to work for the city.
The former councilman has been named community development director, succeeding Rosette Fisher, who took an early retirement.
Mayor David O. Ryan announced Fragle's appointment Tuesday, saying he will begin his duties Sept. 7. His starting salary will be $45,000 a year.
Fragle, 58, lives in Farrell but said he will relocate to Sharon.
"Due to his strong past history of government employment, Mr. Fragle was selected as the candidate that stood out from the field," Ryan said, noting the city had 12 applicants for the job.
Fisher's last day was Thursday, and Ryan said he moved quickly to fill the post as the city is developing a five-year plan for its federal Community Development Block Grant program and is working on a series of grant projects, all of which fall under the community development director's responsibility.
His background
In addition to 11 years as a city councilman, Fragle served eight years as a Mercer County commissioner. He also worked as the county's personnel director before being elected commissioner.
He worked two years as a coordinator for the Shenango Valley Enterprise Zone, has worked as a business manager for several private concerns, and was serving as human sources administrator with Federal Assurance Corp. of New Castle.
Ryan said the job of community development director is evolving from that of monitoring federal grant programs to being an active participant in seeking new development and seeking out new grant sources.
Fragle's experience and connections, particularly with state government, made him the favored candidate for the post, the mayor said. "I know he can get things done," the mayor said.
Fragle said he knows the system and the players and will work to secure more state funding and grants for Sharon. He said he also plans to meet with his counterparts in other municipalities to work for the betterment of the region.
Fragle is the brother of the late city treasurer Rick Fragle.

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