Monessen library honors two women
Two of Monessen's most successful women will return to their hometown to help raise money for its library.
Jessica L. (Garfola) Wright, acting undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness for the U.S. Department of Defense, and former state Rep. Kathy Manderino will be the guests of honor at the fourth annual Monessen Public Library fundraising event.
“A Conversation with Monessen Women of Distinction” will take place 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Aug. 3 at the St. Spyridon Hellenic Center, Monessen.
Chairwoman Susanna Swade, who serves as library board treasurer, said officials are thrilled to welcome Wright and Manderino.
“They have been very successful in male-dominated careers, and we are so happy they will be our guests of honor,” Swade said.
Wright was appointed to her position Jan. 1. She is the senior policy advisor to the secretary of defense on recruitment, career development, pay and benefits for 1.4 million active duty military personnel, 1.3 million National Guard and Reserve personnel, and 680,000 Department of Defense civilian workers.
Wright retired as a major general in the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. Her 35-year career culminated in her final assignment as commander of the Pennsylvania National Guard.
She was the first female aviator in the Army National Guard. Wright commanded the 28th Aviation Brigade, 28th Infantry Division at Fort Indiantown Gap from June 1997 to November 1998.
Wright is married to retired Lt. Colonel Charles Wright. They have one son, Mike, who was commissioned as a second lieutenant in May 2012.
Manderino is senior vice president of Intercommunity Action Inc., a community-based organization in Philadelphia serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, behavioral health needs, and older adults.
From 1993 to 2010, Manderino represented the state House 194th Legislative District in Philadelphia and Montgomery counties.
She served on the Appropriations, Health and Human Services, Insurance, and Judiciary committees.
She chaired the Appropriations Subcommittee on Human Services, the Judiciary Subcommittee on Family Law, and the House Committee on Ethics.
She is member of the executive committee of the Pennsylvania Bar Association's Women in the Profession Commission and is a past PBA board governor and chairwoman of its house of delegates.
Prior to her election to the Legislature, Manderino practiced law at Fox Rothschild LLP. She graduated from Monessen High School in 1976, Penn State University in 1980, and the Temple University School of Law in 1989.
Swade said Wright and Manderino will join an elite group of Monessen natives the library have honored over the years: philanthropist John Husher in 2010; athletic sisters Suzie Williams Broadhurst and Jamie Williams Zimmerman in 2011; and Monessen football coach Joe Gladys last year.
Board President Madeline Dudas said the event is a way to not only raise money for the library, but to showcase city success stories.
“These are people extremely successful in their fields who never forgot Monessen,” Dudas said.
While past events have included testimonials from the guests' relatives and friends, Swade said this year's fundraiser will be different.
“We decided to do a Barbara Walters format,” Swade said.
She explained Wright and Manderino will be interviewed on stage by moderator Marissa Scarvel Sacco of Monessen.
Those in attendance will have opportunities to talk to the women at the end of the program.
Individual tickets are $50 and include a social hour with an open bar from 5 to 6 p.m., followed by a buffet dinner. Each table will be treated to a tray of homemade cookies, compliments of the Monessen Friends of the Library.
Tickets are on sale at the Monessen Public Library, 326 Donner Ave., by calling Swade at 724-684-3894 or online via PayPal at www.monessenlibrary.org.
All proceeds will benefit the library.
Stacy Wolford is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-684-2640 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Mon Valley school districts set to begin new year
- Carroll incident draws police from 4 departments
- Chase suspect faces trial, other woes
- Monessen man faces another trial
- Ringgold set for school year to begin Aug. 28
- Reader requests more from ’44 on ‘This Day’ journey
- Reality Tour at Belle Vernon Area High School traces downfall of addict
- Candlewood Suites coming to Rostraver
- Learning never stops for Fallowfield Towship art educator Mohney
- Accidental death in 1920 France ended reel life for Charleroi’s Thomas
- Colleges came calling for ‘62 Charleroi gridders