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Latrobe chamber fetes authority chief

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Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

Latrobe Area Chamber of Commerce honored community members on Tuesday night during its annual meeting and dinner, including community service award-winner Gabe Monzo, executive director of the Westmoreland County Airport Authority.

Jeff Minkovich, manager of airline services with the authority, introduced Monzo, saying he has done everything at the airport from cutting the grass to serving coffee on flights.

“Gabe is a leader like no other,” he said.

A table of airport workers waved their Terrible Towels, in keeping with a Pittsburgh Steelers theme, during a standing ovation for Monzo.

The executive director acknowledged his wife, sisters and authority board members.

“They have influenced me in a way that has helped teach me what's right and what's wrong,” he said.

Monzo also was recognized for his 38 years in the fire service, including positions as assistant chief of Youngstown Volunteer Fire Department, instructor for the Pennsylvania Fire Academy and fire chief at Arnold Palmer Regional Airport. He has served on the Unity planning commission for 15 years.

Monzo recognized other firefighters at the airport and in the Latrobe area.

“It's like poetry in motion when we do our job — it's second to none,” he said.

Awards that recognize businesses were given to Adelphoi USA, All About Me Boutique, Carlo Technical Plastics, Elizabeth Carbide Components, First Summit Bank, Greater Latrobe School District, Greenhouse Winery, Latrobe Ford-Chevrolet, New Horizons School, Pace Industries, Rolling Hills Industry Inc. and the Westmoreland County Airport Authority.

Former Pittsburgh Steeler Randy Grossman, keynote speaker, talked about how legendary coach Chuck Noll often told the team to be free of distractions and focus on their goals.

“There is no magic in success — it's so amazingly simple,” Grossman said.

Noll was not a motivator but was an excellent teacher, Grossman said.

The Steelers tailgate buffet, with many attendees dressed in black and gold, included many in corresponding jerseys, scarves and T-shirts.

Stacey Federoff is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.

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