The Berks-Mont News (

Northeast Berks Chamber of Commerce elects four members to serve a three-year term on the board

By Northeast Berks Chamber of Commerce

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

The Board of Directors of the Northeast Berks Chamber of Commerce on Dec. 9 declared elected each one of the following nominees who were voted in by members to a three-year term to begin on Jan. 13, 2017: Dr. Martha M. Geaney, Dean of the College of Business at Kutztown University; Dr. Richard J. Mextorf, Superintendent, Hamburg Area School District; James E. Sher, Esq., Sher & Associates, P.C.; and Karen Waters, Mortgage Loan Originator, Fleetwood Bank.

Dr. Martha M. Geaney is the Dean of the College of Business at Kutztown University. Dean Geaney holds a doctorate in interdisciplinary studies with a specialization in Business Administration from the Union Institute and University, Cincinnati. Prior to arriving at Kutztown, Dr. Geaney was the Associate Dean of Graduate Business Programs at Felician University, Rutherford, N.J. There, she launched the only student chapter of the International Association of Women MBAs in the state. Dr. Geaney has more than 20 years of experience in management consulting. She is the author of “Bring Your Spirit to Work: One Woman at a Time,” (Nolan Publishing, 2010).

The College of Business at Kutztown is comprised of two departments that are fully accredited. The Department of Business Administration, accredited by AACSB, offers bachelors’ degrees with majors in accounting, finance, management, and marketing. It also offers a Master’s of Business Administration. The Department of Sports Management and Leadership Studies, accredited by COSMA, offers a Bachelor’s Degree in leisure and sport studies.

Dr. Richard J. Mextorf is in his second year serving as Superintendent of Schools at Hamburg Area School District. He holds degrees from Susquehanna University and The Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Mextorf has served as adjunct professor of educational leadership at Wilkes University and as a developer and facilitator in the Pennsylvania Inspired Leadership Program. Additionally, he serves as a leadership consultant to organizations and has authored numerous articles on future-focused leadership.

Dr. Mextorf is the recipient of the PMEA Outstanding Superintendent Award and the John Wanamaker Humanitarian Medal. He enjoys golf, running, swimming, and cycling. He and Kathy, his wife of 30 years, enjoy spending time with their five children and four grandchildren, and they really enjoy living in Hamburg.

James E. Sher, Esq. is a native of Berks County. He grew up in Oley and graduated from Oley High School in 1988. He received a Bachelor of Science degree from Albright College in 1992, where he majored in history and business management. While at Albright, he spent a semester as an intern with the Honorable Albert A. Stallone of the Berks County Court of Common Pleas. Upon graduating from Albright College, he attended law school at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. While at Duquesne he interned at the Pittsburgh office of Pennsylvania Attorney General. He received his Juris Doctorate in 1995 having graduated in the top 20% of his class.

Upon being admitted to the Pennsylvania bar in 1995, and returning to Berks County, he partnered to create the law firm of O’Keefe & Sher, P.C., in Kutztown. In 2013, Sher launched Sher & Associates, P.C. at the same Kutztown location with many familiar faces and a continued dedication to client satisfaction and to achieving the best outcomes for client legal needs. He has concentrated his practice in the areas of family law, estate planning and administration, business formation and transactional work, and real estate transactions. He is a member of both the Berks County Bar Association and Pennsylvania Bar Association. As a member of the Berks County Bar Association, he has served as president of the Young Lawyers Divisions, president of the Endlich Law Club, co-chairman of the Family Law Division, liaison to the Bar Association Board of Directors, and has participated with other committees and subsections. He previously served on the board of directors of the Kutztown Area Chamber of Commerce. Presently he serves on the board of directors for Opportunity House in Reading, PA and is a member of the Exeter Township Lions Club and the Kutztown Rotary Club. He and his wife live in Exeter Township.

Karen Waters, a Mortgage Loan Originator with Fleetwood Bank, started her position in June 2016. Previously, she worked as a Mortgage Loan Specialist for National Penn Bank and other area financial institutions. Waters has 21 years’ banking experience in various mortgage, banking, and banking management positions.

At Fleetwood Bank, she assists home buyers in finding solutions and securing the financing to get them into their new home. Working with customers from application through settlement, she answers questions, provides solutions and develops relationships. Joining Fleetwood Bank has encouraged Waters to become more active in her community.

A graduate of Hamburg Area High School, Waters attended Reading Area Community College. She resides in Blandon with her husband and two children.

New Board members will be seated at the January 13, 2017 meeting of the Board of Directors to be held at the Chamber Office, 110 West Main Street, in Kutztown. They will be introduced one week later during the Annual Meeting of Members on Friday, January 20, 2017, at 7:30 a.m., at Kutztown University’s MacFarland Student Union.

President Russell Farbiarz, managing partner of Antanavage Farbiarz, PLLC, Hamburg, recognizes the opportunity for the chamber to grow capacity over the next three years. “I am pleased with the talented group of Directors that we have joining our already talented Board of Directors. I am confident that with this new group of Directors we are poised to continue to help our members and the community foster business relationships.”

Outgoing Board members, whose terms will expire on December 31, 2016, will be recognized for their service at the Annual Business Meeting, including Katherine D. Metrick, retired Superintendent of Kutztown Area School District; Lori J. Luckenbill, Assistant VP & Branch Sales Manager, Fleetwood Bank; and Al Ottinger, Principal Consultant, QIC, Inc.

The mission of Northeast Berks Chamber of Commerce is to be a resource and a voice for its members (and those who are not yet members) in Northeast Berks County.

For more information, contact Lori B. Donofrio-Galley, Executive Director, at 610-683-8860.