Business briefs

Business briefs

BROTHERS FORM SCHOLARSHIP: Gary Brantley, senior vice president and chief information officer for the NFL, and his brother, attorney Bryan Brantley, have announced they will establish a scholarship endowment at the YSU Foundation.

The Brantley Family Scholarship will provide assistance to a black and brown student who is a resident of Youngstown majoring in either political science in the pre-law program or computer science, as those were the majors of both Brantley brothers.

Both brothers graduated from Calvary Christian Academy in Youngstown. Gary graduated from YSU in 2002 with his bachelor’s degree in computer and information sciences and received his master’s degree in management in 2013 from the University of Phoenix. Bryan graduated from YSU in 2001 with his bachelor’s degree in political science and received his law degree from Duquesne University in 2004.

Gary has been the CIO for the NFL since October 2022. Prior to, he worked as chief information officer for Beazer Homes, the City of Atlanta and DeKalb County Schools, and was the vice president of IT for Ohio.

Bryan is a litigation partner, a member of the board of partners and leader of the transportation industry team at McGuireWoods, a national law firm with more than 1,000 lawyers in 24 offices across the U.S., Europe and Asia.

WRTA ANNOUNCES CONTEST WINNERS: Thirteen local small businesses were selected to be featured in the 2024 Western Reserve Transit Authority Give Small Business A Lift campaign.

They are All Spruced Up Cleaning Co., Avalon Downtown Pizzeria, J. Jenee Spa & Wellness, Gloris, Counseling Services, La La Love Healthcare LLC, Charly’s Family Restaurant, The Joshua Tree, The Emma Elf Project, Rescued to Riches Pet Groom and Board, Bending Oak, Permaculture Farm, Haus Auto Group, Guided Compass Holistic Health and QUICKmed Urgent Care.

The WRTA began the campaign in 2022 as a way to help Valley small businesses thrive. So far, 37 businesses and their owners have been featured.

The 13 featured small businesses will be promoted on WRTA buses, social media, on a giant digital sign downtown and elsewhere.

CLEVER WINS AWARDS: Youngstown-based marketing firm, Clever, won three awards at the American Advertising Federation’s fifth district competition.

Clever received Silver Addys for the Black History Month Campaign for Alta Care Group and the AdChella Campaign for the Ad Chapter, as well as a MOSAIC Addy for the Black History Month Campaign for Alta Care Group. The MOSAIC Addy is a special judge’s choice award that honors work that best exemplifies a spirit of diversity and inclusion, and it is the second MOSAIC award the team has received for this campaign.

The fifth district represents 11 professional advertising associations and 18 college chapters in Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia.

PETREY RECOGNIZED BY FORBES: Tim Petrey, chief executive of Liberty-based HD Growth Partners and founder of White Glove Payroll, was recently listed by Forbes as one of “America’s Top 200 CPAs of 2024”.

Forbes’ selection process, spanning nearly a year, is an evaluation of CPAs nationwide. Being part of the list is a testament to the dedication and hard work of each one of the CPAs. Forbes recognizes the honorees for their technical expertise, roles in innovation, thought leadership, community service and ethical standards.

Petrey began working for HD Growth Partners in 2009. The accolade follows recent awards, including CPA Practice Advisor’s 40 Under 40 list, Ohio’s 500 Most Influential Leaders and being named to the Association of Ohio Commodores.

COMPANY TO MARK DAY: City Machine Technologies, Inc. established National Skilled Trades

Day to promote awareness about the benefits of skilled trades jobs in the U.S. and to celebrate skilled trades workers.

National Skilled Trades Day is observed annually on the first Wednesday in May, as proclaimed by the registrar at the National Day Calendar.

CMT is partnering with Penguin City Brewery, 460 E. Federal St., Youngstown, for a family-friendly event to celebrate the day. The “Cheers to Beers and Careers” event will be 4 to 7 p.m. May 1.

Children attending can dress up like skilled trades workers and trick-or-treat in the brewery since it will be halfway to Halloween. There also will be a costume contest and M-7 Technologies will sponsor a kids’ dance party.

People on the move

FIRM ANNOUNCES NEW PARTNERS: BSHM Architects has announced Michael Ruscitti, Mary O. Dennis and Michael Vala have been elevated to firm partners.

Ruscitti, who has been with the firm for more than 10 years and is president-elected of the AIA Youngstown Board, will be responsible for co-operation of the downtown Youngstown location of BSHM, as well as business development.

Dennis, also will be responsible for co-operation of the Youngstown office. Dennis, who has been a registered architect for 32 years, has been with BSHM since 2001. Dennis was the first woman president of the local American Institute of Architects, from 1998 through 2000.

Vala will be responsible for overseeing operations of the Columbus location of BSHM.

VALLEY NATIVE ELECTED CHAIRMAN: Richard L. LaRocca, certified club Manager, certified chief executive, was elected vice chairman of the Club Management Association of America at its 2024 World Conference and Club Business Expo in March in Las Vegas.

He was first elected to the board of directors in 2018 and reelected in 2021.

LaRocca, a native of Youngstown and graduate of Youngstown State University, serves general manager / chief operating officer of St. Clair Country Club in Upper St. Clair, Pennsylvania.

As vice chairman, LaRocca will work with the membership, national committees and task forces, partners and the national headquarters team to advance the profession and the broader industry collaboratively.

Founded in 1927, the association is the largest professional association for managers of membership clubs with 7,800 members throughout the U.S. and internationally. Members include more than 2,500 country, golf, athletic, city, faculty, military, town and yacht clubs.

NEW MEMBERS JOIN AUTISM SOCIETY BOARD: The Autism Society of Mahoning Valley has brought on five individuals to its board of

Directors. They are:

• Stefanie Hill, a special educator at Potential Development Elementary and Middle

School for Students with Autism.

• Laura McBride, director of special services for the Springfield Local School District.

• Mary Mihalopoulos, director of the Adult Career Center at Mahoning County Career & Technical Center.

• Michael Mock, branch manager, Premier Bank’s Boardman office.

• Chelsea Munroe, a project specialist, Enbridge Gas Ohio and the founding Chapter President of Sleep in Heavenly Peace Trumbull County.

The society was founded by local families in 1989 to support local families affected by autism. It is an affiliate of the Autism Society of America and serves Mahoning, Trumbull and Columbiana counties.

Business briefs

FOUNDATION NAMES TWO TO COMMITTEE: The Youngstown Foundation recently announced it has appointed Amy Cossentino, the founding dean of the Sokolov Honors College at Youngstown State University, and Guy Coviello, president / CEO of the Youngstown / Warren Regional Chamber, to its distribution committee.

The committee, a group of six volunteers with leadership experience and deep knowledge of community needs, oversees the foundation’s administration and makes final grant award decisions.

Cossentino, who has been at YSU for more than 30 years, also serves as associate provost for strategy and engagement. In addition, she is leading YSU’s effort to obtain the Carnegie Foundation Elective Classification for Community Engagement.

Coviello has led the chamber since 2021. Under his leadership, the chamber has experienced strong growth in membership and revenue and has launched many new programs for members.

Before joining the chamber in 2014, Coviello was editor of the Tribune Chronicle, where he worked for nearly 30 years.

EGCC NURSING STUDENTS EXCEL: Eastern Gateway Community College nursing students all passed the National Council Licensure Examination, giving the college a 100 % pass rate.

Nineteen students, 17 from Ohio and 2 from West Virginia, took the exam, and are now licensed to begin working in the medical field to fill much needed nursing vacancies.

FELLOWS SELECTED: Two students from the Mahoning Valley were among three from the Williamson College of Business Administration at Youngstown State University who were selected as the John D. Beeghly Fellows for the 2024 spring semester.

The program provides students with a paid fellowship working with the Ohio Small Business Development Center, Export Assistance Network and the APEX Accelerator at YSU. Projects include domestic and international market research, financial modeling, export readiness studies, business viability analysis, cash flow projections, sales forecasting, marketing and social media strategies, research on government contracting opportunities, marketing capability statements and outreach for government contracting efforts.

The local students are:

 Rebecca Catlos of New Middletown, who has a double major in marketing and supply chain management with a minor in entrepreneurship. Catlos will work for JLC Services as their marketing director as well as attend officer training school for the Air National Guard. She will graduate in May.

 Zachary Clark of Youngstown, is a senior also graduating in May with a bachelor’s degree in general studies with a focus in management and marketing, an associate degree in business administration and a minor in sales. He will pursue procurement.

LAW FIRM HITS MILESTONE: Attorneys David Betras and Brian Kopp marked the 25th anniversary of the founding of the law firm by reaffirming their commitment to the communities they serve, unveiling a comprehensive plan that will ensure its growth and a new name, Betras Kopp LLC.

The partners recently began implementing their plan for growth by adding attorneys Frank Cassese and James Melfi to the firm’s roster. Cassese will focus on civil and criminal litigation. Melfi is a member of the firm’s complex litigation practice group.

The new name is part of a rebrand that also includes a new logo and website address, betraskopp.com, revised and upgraded digital platforms and content.

VIRTUAL FINANCIAL WORKSHOP AVAILABLE: Credit Union of Ohio will offer a free debt reduction virtual workshop noon April 23.

The workshop will provide tips on how to pay down debt and see results, including reviewing the importance of a budget, learning about repayment plans and a variety of repayment options. Those interested in attending should register at cuofohio.org.

NAME CHANGE FOR LONGTIME COMPANY: Columbiana Boiler Company, which hit 125 years in business in 2019, has changed its corporate trade name to CBC Global.

The new name better represents the company’s expanding product lines and markets, Michael Koprivnak, president, said. Its products are used in the aerospace, pharmaceutical, food manufacturing and other industries.

The company continues to maintain its manufacturing plant and offices at 200 Railroad Street in Columbiana. The website has changed to cbcglobalco.com.

People on

the move

MACMILLAN JOINS PLATZ: Shea MacMillan has joined Platz Realty Group as a commercial real estate agent in the Mahoning Valley.

He most recently was vice president of economic development for the Youngstown / Warren Regional Chamber. In the role, he oversaw a team that supported expanded initiatives in workforce development, regional logistics and site readiness, while managing the department’s economic development service in Trumbull and Mahoning counties.

MacMillan’s experience in project management and economic development contracts brings a unique skill set to Platz, a release from the firm states. Having managed projects that have resulted in more than $3.1 billion in capital investment, providing support for notable projects like the Macy’s fulfillment center, Kimberly-Clark and Ultium Cells, his site and building selection services along with his knowledge of local and state incentives will bring significant value to Platz, the release states.

HBK ADDS STAFF: HBK CPAs & Consultants has brought on certified public accountant Shawn O’Brien.

He joins the firm after two decades at Thomson Reuters / AuditWatch, where he was a senior consultant specializing in providing audit efficiency and quality, and core level training for accounting firms.

In addition to working directly with HBK audit clients, O’Brien will lead process improvement in the firm’s assurance practice in support of the team’s focus on quality results and efficient practices. His role includes supporting the firm’s auditors and accounting staff with continuing education and training on everything audit-related, from standards to methodology and processes.

NEW BOARD MEMBERS AT BRITE: BRITE Energy Innovators, a clean energy startup incubator, recently announced members to its board of directors and newly appointed leadership.

The new board members, whose three-year terms began Jan. 1 are Patricia Grospiron, executive director, builder platform for The Engine Accelerator; Samuel Huston, market president, Mahoning Valley for Huntington National Bank; the Rev. Todd Johnson, pastor at Second Baptist Church and Warren 1st Ward councilman; Marvin Logan Jr., director, education and employment at Rocket Community Fund; Jennifer Lynch, principal at Remington Road Group; and Michael Repetto Sr., director, North American EV Business, Foxconn EV System.

Appointed to leadership roles were Michael Stacey, director and ZEV campaign leader for the KPMG Infrastructure Practice, chair; Courtney Gras, startup community lead for Amazon Web Services, vice chair; Tim Petrey, CEO of HD Growth Partners and White Glove Payroll, treasurer; and Alexa Sweeney Blackann, former President of Sweeney Chevrolet and Sweeney Buick GMC, secretary.


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