News & Events

Prominent Business Leaders Join PA Early Learning Investment Commission

The Pennsylvania Early Learning Investment Commission announced the appointment of two new members, along with six renewing members – all business leaders from across the Commonwealth. New and returning members took their oath to serve on Pennsylvania’s Early Learning Investment Commission on October 22nd at a ceremony in the Governor’s Residence in Harrisburg. It was part of the Commission’s 2019 Planning & Orientation Meeting.

“Welcome to the new and returning members of the Early Learning Investment Commission,” said, Governor Tom Wolf.

“Your continued dedication and commitment toward ensuring every child in Pennsylvania has access to high-quality early childhood care and education is admirable. I share that commitment. Since 2015, we have increased our investments in PreK by $120 million to serve an additional 11,877 children, in-home visiting by $20 million to serve 4,000 more children, and have invested $230 million in federal funds to move thousands of children from the Child Care Works waiting list. Let’s keep this important work moving forward together.”

Vice President of Human Resources for Sheetz, Inc., Stephanie Doliveira, was appointed the new co-chair of the commission, replacing Lloyd Lamm, former regional banking executive of the capital region with First National Bank of Pennsylvania. Lamm was presented with the “Stewardship of Early Learning” award after over a decade of service and was appointed the inaugural chair of the newly formed Emeritus Advisory Council of the Pennsylvania Early Learning Investment Commission.

Guest speakers included:

  • Dr. Janet Haas, Chair of the William Penn Foundation and Honorary Co-chair of the Commission,
  • Diane Halstead, Tennesse Project Director, Council for a Strong America and first Executive Director of the Commission,
  • Jonathan Marks, Deputy Secretary for Elections and Commissions,
  • Meg Snead, Secretary of Policy and Planning,
  • Jen Swails, Secretary of the Budget,
  • Tara Breitspecher, Deputy Secretary of Policy and Planning,
  • Tracey Campanini, Deputy Secretary of the Office of Child Development and Early Learning, and
  • Abby Smith, Director of Education & Workforce Development, Team Pennsylvania.

New Appointees

  • Kurt A. Schertle, Chief Operating Officer, Weis Markets
  • Mark S. Schweiker, former Governor, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; SVP, Corporate Development Officer, Renmatix

Renewing Appointees
The six renewing members of the Commission were:

  • Nicholas Gianaris, Director, FAS Aerospace and Defense, Air Liquide Advanced Technologies
  • Mary Ann Hood, Senior Vice President of Human Resources, EEO Officer and Director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia
  • Alice Lindenauer, Managing Director, Global Human Resources, Hamilton Lane
  • James Waddington, Jr., Director, Strategy and Business Development, Sparton Corporation
  • Andy Williford, VP Human Resources, Volvo Construction Equipment Operations Americas, and
  • Steven Wray, VP, and Director, Econsult Solutions, Inc.

Andrea Heberlein Appointed Executive Director of the PA Early Learning Investment Commission

The Pennsylvania Early Learning Investment Commission announces the appointment of Andrea Heberlein as Executive Director.

Before joining the Pennsylvania Early Learning Investment Commission, Andrea served as the Vice President of Strategic Impact for United Way of Lancaster County, where she helped to lead and support community initiatives focused on improving the educational, health, and financial outcomes for children, youth, and adults. Under her leadership, United Way of Lancaster County was recognized nationally and statewide for unprecedented increases in health and social service collaboration and innovative place-based strategies related to social determinants of health.

Andrea has an extensive background and experience around community-building work, service coordination for adults with disabilities, community systems development for children with disabilities, and directing a NAEYC accredited, Keystone Star 4, early childhood learning center. She currently serves on the Governance Committee for the Lancaster County Homeless Coalition, Board of Directors for Hunger-Free Lancaster, Advisory Council for Nurse-Family Partnership, and as Co-chair of the Education Action Team for the Lancaster Coalition to Combat Poverty.

Andrea received her Master of Social Work degree from Millersville University, where she is also an adjunct professor for social work classes at the undergraduate and graduate levels. She is a 2018 Policy Fellow alumni under the Pennsylvania Office of Child Development and Early Learning and a 2019 graduate of the United Way Worldwide Leadership Program.

Please join us in welcoming Andrea to the Commission!

Commissioners in Action

On Tuesday, October 8, Governor Wolf spent an hour meeting with parents, providers, business leaders, and advocates from the Start Strong, Pre-K for PA and Childhood Begins at Home campaigns to talk about the importance of public investments and multi-sector partnerships to improve access to high quality services for PA children from birth to age 5.

Commissioners Pete Brubaker (Hammer Creek Enterprises, LLC), Tony Campisi (Glatfelter Insurance Group), Joshua Carney (Carney Engineering), and Kevin Schreiber (York Area Community & Economic Development) joined the round table discussion to highlight economic impact data from a recent study showing that the lack of child care in Pennsylvania impacts infants and toddlers, working parents, employers, and taxpayers – with an annual economic cost of $2.5 billion in lost earnings, productivity, and revenue.

Commissioners Kate Woods, Chief Compliance Officer with Schweiger Dermatology Group, and Gene Barr, President & CEO of the Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry, took part in a panel discussion at an event hosted by DHHS on Improving Access to High-Quality Child Care. Highlighting the report, “Growing Tomorrow’s Economy Means Investing in Child Care Today,” on the economic impact of insufficient child care, businesses lose more than $1,400 per working parent, due to greater hiring costs and reduced revenue. This adds up to $600 million lost among PA businesses each year.

“Business leaders understand the need to improve the availability and affordability of high-quality child care as a critical workforce support.”

Gene Barr, PA Chamber of Business and Industry

Commissioner Audrey Russo, President & CEO of Pittsburgh Technology Council spoke at an event at UPMC Passavant that highlighted the impact of their on-site child care center. Hosted by Trying Together, the event targeted business leaders eager to learn more about how investing in high-quality early learning can impact their workforce.

Issues around flexibility are really important and something I hear HR departments really struggle with, and in technology, we are still seeing a glass ceiling for women, and a struggle for them to start their own companies because of these barriers.”

-Audrey Russo, Pittsburgh Technology

“We are losing half of the gene pool in terms of building innovation” (when a workforce isn’t supported with affordable and accessible child care), Russo added.

William Isler, Audrey Russo & Jake Witherell: Gap in non-traditional child care undermines economic growth

Kids love playing musical chairs. Around they go, and when the music stops, someone has a seat, and someone is standing.

But Pennsylvania parents and employers are playing a real-life game of musical chairs, with devastating consequences. Nearly half of Pennsylvania families work in fields demanding evening, night-time and weekend hours, but only one child care seat is available for every three families that need it.

As a result, children lack quality care, parents lose their jobs and miss career opportunities, and employers struggle to close hiring gaps. This is the reality, as seen in “Making It Work: Examining the Status of Non-Traditional Child Care in Pennsylvania,” a new report from Research for Action funded by The Heinz Endowments.

Read More of the Op-Ed from our Pittsburgh Commissioners in TribLIVE: HERE

Child care disrupts healthcare; state’s economy

Wanted: Physical therapy assistants, $52,000 average salary. Respiratory therapists, $56,000. Registered nurses, $69,000.

Health care is bursting with opportunities. From hospital systems to home health providers to nursing communities, Pennsylvania health care businesses demand dedicated, highly qualified staff, equipped to show up every day and deliver high-quality care and ever-improving outcomes.

What’s standing in our way? In addition to the supply of skilled workers in specialty clinical roles, a lack of accessible, affordable, high-quality child care for infants and toddlers, and it’s not a problem for health care alone.

Read more of the Op-Ed from Commissioner Kendra Aucker, President and CEO of Evangelical Community Hospital in The Daily Item: HERE