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9/11 group to hire executive director

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By Jennifer Reeger
Saturday, Feb. 16, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

The Friends of Flight 93 National Memorial is hiring its first executive director as part of an effort to increase its fundraising to support programming and other needs at the Somerset County site.

The friends group, which incorporated in 2009, is the nonprofit partner of the National Park Service for the memorial.

“We're looking for someone with a passionate commitment to Flight 93 National Memorial and someone who is a strategic thinker but also able to handle the day-to-day demands of our growing organization,” Lladel Lichty, president of the Friends of Flight 93, said in a news release.

The friends group works to promote the memorial through speaking engagements, a quarterly newsletter and distribution of a DVD and other information.

The memorial honors the 40 men and women aboard Flight 93 who fought back against terrorist aboard the plane on Sept. 11, 2001, and forced the plane to the ground in Stonycreek Township.

The organization, which has members from across the nation, has successfully secured grants, provided volunteers for many park projects and sponsored educational forums on Sept. 11 topics.

Its members work with the National Park Service and the Families of Flight 93 in planning the annual commemorative services. They also have sponsored a reception for returning family members each years since 2010.

In 2011, when the Flight 93 National Memorial was dedicated, the friends group organized a display of 2,977 luminarias to remember all the lives lost on Sept. 11. Last year, they organized a procession of 40 lighted candle lanterns to the memorial's Wall of Names.

The group is looking for a person with experience in nonprofit fundraising since they want to take on a larger role in that area. The group also plans to be more involved in educational programming when the visitors center and learning center open at the memorial in 2015.

The search for the full-time Somerset-based position is being handled by HMK Associates Inc., an executive search firm.

To learn more about the position, email

Jennifer Reeger is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-836-6155 or

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