In order to best serve Pennsylvania communities, our staff is comprised of individuals possessing varied skill sets. Need to contact a member of our staff? Please review the following list to determine which staff member can best assist you.
Bill Fontana, Executive Director
Bill took the reins as PDC Executive Director on May 1, 2000, ushering in an exciting period of renewal for the organization. Prior to joining PDC, Bill served for two and a half years as executive director of the Rahway Center Partnership, a New Jersey special improvement district. He also served as Chairman of the Rahway Historic Preservation Commission.
From 1979 to 1997, Bill worked on redevelopment efforts in western Pennsylvania, including time with the Redevelopment Authority of Allegheny County and the County Departments of Planning and Economic Development. His roles during those 17 years included Commercial Revitalization Coordinator, enterprise Zone Coordinator and Senior Planner. He was instrumental in laying the groundwork for the "Waterfront" project that stretches across the communities of West Homestead, Homestead and Munhall. Bill holds a bachelor's and master's degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Pittsburgh.
To Contact, Click Here.
Julie Fitzpatrick, Assistant Director / Special Projects Coordinator
Julie's responsibilities include providing technical assistance to local communities for a wide range of economic development and planning services, and providing staff support on program development. Since she has been with PDC, Julie has been involved with a variety of projects in communities all over the commonwealth. She has facilitated a community visioning process in communities such as: Bloomsburg, Collegeville, Johnstown, Manheim, Vandergrift and Millersville. Other projects have involved developing Regional Downtown Revitalization Strategies in communities in Dauphin and Schuylkill counties, along with a Tourism Infrastructure Plan for the Route 6 Heritage Corridor. Lately, Julie has been working in communities that are outside of the DCED funding cycle to provide guidance and support in developing work plans and strategic planning activities.
Julie joined PDC in January 2005 as an intern and became the Special Projects Coordinator in March 2005. Julie has a master's degree in Community and Regional Planning and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History and Anthropology, all from Temple University. Her previous non-profit experience includes volunteering with WITF, Central Pennsylvania's public television and radio station, Mulberry Arts Studio in Lancaster, and the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County. She currently serves her community as the board president of the Susquehanna Sustainable Business Network (ssbn) and is on the board for the Pennsylvania Community Forests Council.
To Contact, Click Here.
Emily Zebel, Graphic Designer
When Emily first came to PDC, her responsibilities included managing membership services, coordinating training sessions and conferences.stewarding the PDC brand and vision to extend to its print and online materials. Emily now provides sophisticated, professional graphic design services for PDC on a freelance/contract basis.
A graduate of the York College of Pennsylvania with a BA in Professional Writing, Emily possesses a wealth of creative talents and a passion for community. As a writer, she has received numerous publications and awards for her poetry and non-fiction, and founded York College's first Poetry Festival. As a young professional, she completed an internship in 2008 at American Rivers' Camp Hill field office, compiling a national database on dam removal and coordinating a state-wide conference on stormwater initiatives. She also served with AmeriCorps as a trail crew member in Arizona, working with a conservation group to rebuild trail systems and promote conscientious environmental practices.
Prior to her time with PDC, Emily served as Program Manager for the Perry County Council of the Arts, where she assisted in the opening of Newport's first regional Community Arts Center, Landis House, and worked as an assistant for the Council's Arts in Education program.
Emily currently lives in Wellsville and tempers her diligent work ethic with weekend forays as a whitewater canoeist, snowboarder, and general outdoor enthusiast.
Mary Lee Stotler, Field Services Coordinator
Before joining PDC in October 2011, she was Promotions Specialist for the Michigan Main Street Center where she provided training and technical assistance to Main Street communities throughout the state. Prior to that, she served as Main Street Manager for Freeport, Texas, a position she held for more than five years. As department head in a Gulf Coast community, she received training and experience in disaster planning. Between hurricanes, she found time to oversee a downtown park improvement project, as well as developing several successful events including a blues festival which grew from 250 attendees to approximately 10,000 in five years. A former personal trainer and fitness columnist, she saw the opportunity to promote the city as a recreation destination and created a sprint triathlon that attracted athletes from across the state. By the fourth year, this event brought athletes from as far away as Japan. Prior to joining the Main Street family, Mary Lee served for several years as the Branch Director for the Boys & Girls Club in Freeport, Texas, providing mentoring and a safe environment for children. With both a BA and MA in English from the University of Houston, Mary Lee taught at both the high school and college levels. A self-proclaimed history buff, she is enthusiastic about helping cities preserve and market their historic downtowns. In addition to her many years in the Main Street movement, Mary Lee's background includes teaching and non-profit management.
To Contact, Click Here.
Ashlee O. Shelton, Marketing & Membership Coordinator
Ashlee joined the Pennsylvania Downtown Center in March of 2012. She has worked in the nonprofit sector for her entire career and has a passion for community driven projects that involve plants, food, people, social justice and art. Ashlee has been a community organizer, an advocate for people experiencing homelessness and a mental health case manager. A graduate of Penn State University with a BS in Applied Behavioral Science, Ashlee brings a social services based approach and a person-centered perspective to her work. She is a self proclaimed 'Jane of All Trades' and enjoys expanding her knowledge base on a regular basis by reading, talking to strangers and trying new things.
While serving as executive director for Pennsylvanians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, Ashlee substantially increased membership and spearheaded the contagious Execute Art, Not People! campaign. When she is not at the office, Ashlee can be found digging in the dirt, hiking with her family, dancing or playing volleyball.
To Contact, Click Here.
Rick Viglione, Field Outreach Specialist
Born and raised in Ridgway, PA in Elk County, Rick Viglione graduated from Slippery Rock with a degree in Planning, and went on to join the Elk County Planning Commission as their Assistant County Planner. He was later appointed as County Planner in 1977, and in 1983 joined the six-county Area Transportation Authority of North Central Pennsylvania (ATA) as its Planning Director, where he remained until July 2005. Most recently, Rick served as Ridgway's Main Street Manager.
Rick has been very active in his community, including the Ridgway Area School Board and the YMCA Board of Directors. He served as Chairman of the Ridgway Borough Zoning Hearing Board, assisted the Elk County Redevelopment Authority, and was instrumental in organizing Leadership Elk County. Rick has volunteered as a coach for a number of youth sports teams and is currently an assistant varsity football coach.
In his spare time, Rick enjoys outdoor activities, including hiking, hunting, and mountain biking. He and his wife, Tanya, have a son, Andrew, and a granddaughter.
To Contact, Click Here.
Stefan Klosowski, Field Outreach Specialist
Stefan was the Main Street Manager for Middletown and Executive Director of the GMEDC. Prior to his return to central PA he worked for thirteen years in Poland, Russia, Romania and Macedonia as a community planner, economic development specialist, and managed democracy and governance projects, as an independent consultant employed by USAID contractors.
He first became familiar with the 'Main Street' approach as the Senior Planner in Hagerstown in the 1980's and later as Urban Design Planner in Annapolis, took the four points to Eastern Europe. Educated at Mt. St. Mary's University studying history, sociology and the arts, and later urban design and the environment at Virginia Tech, he then earned his Masters of Planning and Certificate in Historic Preservation from the University of Virginia.
Stefan was raised in the Harrisburg area and lives in Linglestown, where his family had a small construction business. His favorite pastimes include, canoeing, bicycling and sailing. He currently sings German songs with the Lancaster Liederkranz. He has a passion for towns and cities and enjoys working on redesigning his house.
Our committees include: finance, legislative, governance, and the annual conference. They thrive on active participation by our members from across the commonwealth. Questions about PDC's board and committee structure? Interested in serving on a committee? Click here and let us know.