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Monack gets own 'Way' at Alta Vista

| Thursday, Oct. 31, 2013, 12:31 a.m.
Jim Ference | The Valley Independent
MIDA President Ron Monack of Fallowfield Township, looks over street sign that bears his name along with Lue Ann Pawkick, Executive Director of MIDA at the Alta Vista site in Bentleyville. The sign was unveiled on Wednesday,October 30,2013 during the ribbon cutting for the new road that bears his name in the MIDA Park.
Jim Ference | The Valley Independnet
MIDA President Ron Monack of Fallowfield Township, looks over check that MIDA recieved from the Washington County Local Share Account during the luncheon at the Bentleyville Holiday Inn, after a ribbon cutting at Alta Vista Park in Bentleyville on Wednesday, October 30,2013.

Serving his community for decades, Ron Monack has taken a page out of Frank Sinatra's collection – doing it his way – colleagues said.

Atop the summit of the business park aptly named for the Italian phrase “beautiful view,” the MIDA president got his way – Monack Way.

“You've always done it your way,” John LaCarte told Monack. “Now, Monack's finally got his way.”

The Middle Monongahela Industrial Development Association conducted a dedication ceremony for a new access road atop the Alta Vista Park in Fallowfield Township. Naming the road Monack Way was a surprise for the MIDA president.

LaCarte, a MIDA board member, described Monack as a caring person with high integrity who is loved by the communities he serves.

He noted that Monack's “Evening with Friends” fundraiser that has drawn crowds to the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort for the past 23 years has raised “seven figures” for the Mon Valley YMCA endowment fund.

Monack's service on the Charleroi Board of Trustees has ensured baseball fields in downtown Charleroi are there for young people, LaCarte said.

As chairman of the Fallowfield Township Municipal Authority, Monack worked to extend sewage service to all residents of the community.

“Without Ron, we would have no public sewage,” LaCarte said.

But Monack deflected credit to the organization honoring him.

“This is not my day at all,” Monack said.

“It's MIDA's day. This is the culmination of the efforts from the day MIDA took over the Donora Park.”

Monack said Alta Vista was a significant challenge, taking a vacant site and building an industrial park from the ground up.

“The reason we met that challenge is because we stayed the course and stayed within MIDA's mission,” Monack said.

The dedication of Monack Way opens up the final 70 acres of Alta Vista, MIDA Executive Director LueAnn Pawlick said.

Pawlick said the road was named to honor a man she said has worked tirelessly to bring businesses to the site.

“Alta Vista, now engineering and roadwise, is pad ready,” Monack said. “All we're concerned about is getting companies in here.”

Pawlick said roughly 450 people are employed at Alta Visa firms – Gardner Denver Nash, Progeny Systems and Exide Technologies.

Two other companies moving to the park, Scientific Drilling and Waukesha-Pierce, will bring 200 more workers, she said.

Monack this week predicted 2,000 people will eventually be employed there when the park is full. Pawlick acknowledged MIDA has had talks with other companies interested in the park.

“I think we're going to be selling out pretty quickly,” Pawlick said. “We have been marketing Alta Vista. That's our No. 1 job.”

Washington County Commission Chairman Larry Maggi said the county needs sites like Alta Vista to attract business, especially with the growth of natural gas exploration.

Maggi and Commissioner Diana Irey Vaughn presented MIDA with a $1.1 million check. The Local Share Account money covered two-thirds of the road project cost.

Local share dollars are generated from gaming revenue from the Meadows Racetrack & Casino in North Strabane Township.

“MIDA, you've accomplished so much,” Irey Vaughn said. “The LSA allows us to reinvest in the county.”

She noted that Washington County is third in the nation in job growth.

“We want to be number one,” she said. “We won't stop working.”

Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or cbuckley@tribweb.com.

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