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Meet your Jeaqnnette neighbors: Mark Levander

| Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013, 9:02 p.m.
Republican Councilman Mark Levander running for re-election to Jeannette City Council.

Mark Levander describes himself as “sort of anti-social” but credits his neighbors, including the Gelders and Wielands for helping him out.

“They got me out of my comfort zone. They made it so much easier and nicer. My first year here was hard — I got vandalized, but we got past that and made good relationships that I am so grateful for,” he said.

Levander and his wife, Stephanie, are the owners of Levander Chiropractic and Massage on North First Street. They also live nearby and Levander likes the fact that he has not had to drive to work for the past eight years. Levander is also a councilman in the City of Jeannette. He was elected to the position in November 2011 and has served a year on council.

He is a graduate of Plum High School and after graduation, Levander was in the U.S. Navy during the Gulf War. After he returned home from the war, he worked at Respironics in Murrysville and was going to school to be an engineer at the New Kensington Branch of Penn State University where he planned to transfer to University Park.

However, circumstances intervened and that is not what happened.

Levander sustained a back injury and his dad suggested that he go to a chiropractor. While getting treatment, Levander learned about the chiropractic lifestyle. He was very interested in the way that chiropractic helps the body toward natural healing and decided to attend the Palmer School of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa.

After graduating with his doctorate, Levander set-up practice in Mt. Pleasant, but eventually moved to Jeannette where he bought Dr. Constantine's practice.

In August 2008, Levander married the former Stephanie Brooks from Confluence. She worked for Steel City Products in McKeesport, but went back to school for massage therapy and now works full-time with her husband.

“It is the best thing that could have ever happened to us,” said Levander.

Along with the chiropractic business, Levander and his wife own several properties around the area. The properties are rentals and for some time the Levanders lived in one of their duplexes until they bought their current single-family home.

In the past, Levander was an avid kayaker and would kayak at Ohiopyle and the Cheat River Canyon which sport some daring Class IV rapids.

Since Levander owns his own business, he said, “There is no sick time, and no one to cover for me if I get injured, so I stopped.”

He was also a dek hockey enthusiast, but today for a hobby he focuses on photography and videography. This past year he worked as the photographer and videographer for the Charleroi High School football team.

When it comes to his role as a city councilman, Levander said, “I like it — my wife hates it, but she supports me 100 percent. She just thinks we have enough going on. She manages my schedule well. I wanted things to happen fast and it just doesn't happen like that. The good news is that we have positive movement on all fronts.”

To learn about kayaking, photography or city government, get to know neighbor Mark Levander.

Margie Stanislaw is a freelance writer.