Keynote Speaker

Dr. Bernard Prusak
Professor of Philosophy and Director of the McGowan Center for Ethics and Social Responsibility
Kings College

Social Entrepreneurship – Redefining Innovation and Impact


Dr. Bernard Prusak is Professor of Philosophy and Director of the McGowan Center for Ethics and Social Responsibility at King’s College in Wilkes-Barre, PA. He was educated at Williams College; Exeter College, Oxford University; and Boston University, where he took his Ph.D. in philosophy. He then taught humanities and social sciences for three years in the Core Curriculum at Boston University and for seven years in the Center for Liberal Education at Villanova University, from which he moved to King’s in fall of 2012 in order to found the McGowan Center.

Dr. Prusak’s research focuses in moral and political philosophy. He has published widely in scholarly journals on such topics as parental obligations and children’s rights, conscience, war, religious liberty, and the moral limits of markets; he also writes frequently for Commonweal magazine, where he worked as an editorial assistant before graduate school. He was an officer of the American Catholic Philosophical Association from 2009 to 2012 and has served on the editorial boards of Public Affairs Quarterly and Expositions: Interdisciplinary Studies in the Humanities, for which he edits the forum “Ethics in Focus.” He is a member of the steering committee of the Catholic Social Teaching Research and Learning Initiative, a collaboration of faculty and administrators from eleven Catholic colleges and universities across the United States, and he has been guest editor of three issues of the Journal of Catholic Higher Education. He also serves on the Wilkes-Barre General Hospital Ethics Committee and the Ethics Advisory Council for Geisinger’s MyCode Community Health Initiative.

Dr. Prusak’s book Parental Obligations and Bioethics: The Duties of a Creator appeared fall 2013 in the series Annals of Bioethics published by Routledge. (Click here for David Archard’s review in Notre Dame Philosophical Reviewshere for Jake Earl’s review in the Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journalhere for Jason Eberl’s review in Expositions, and here for Jean Kazez’s assessment on her blog “In Living Color.”) His book Catholic Moral Philosophy in Practice and Theory: An Introduction was published by Paulist Press in March 2016. (Click here for Brent Gordon’s review in Reading Religion and here for Bruno Niederbacher’s review in The Way [pages 118-120].)

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Breakout Sessions

Ryan Hertel

Branding 101


What is Branding actually? Join Ryan Hertel, Dallas High School grad and founder of Socialocca, a digital creative agency, as he explores creating experiences with your target audience that define who you are, what you do, and why it is valuable. Since he’s also an accomplished DJ and musician, ask him to do a personal case study on how he juggles all of his entrepreneurial brands!

Entrepreneur, business builder and musician, Ryan Hertel is a Dallas, Pennsylvania native who specializes in social media and branding. At 17 years old, Ryan founded an entertainment management company and marked the beginning of his entrepreneurial career. After emerging into the public’s eye as a DJ and music producer, Ryan switched gears and in 2016 launched his main venture as an entrepreneur, Socialocca. Through heavy networking and finding himself one step ahead of his own projects, Ryan has created a digital creative agency that has the potential for nonstop growth into every area of digital marketing, design, software, and more. Ryan hasn’t put away his turntables for good just yet, and with employees and clients residing across the country, he always tries to catch a show when traveling to cities like Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, and Las Vegas.

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Jocelyn Sterenchock
Coordinator of Entrepreneurial Services

Top Entrepreneurial Mistakes


We all make mistakes. Entrepreneurs seem to make some of the same ones over and over again. Join this breakout session to explore some of the most common entrepreneurial mistakes and learn from others on how to avoid pitfalls that can derail your success.

Jocelyn Sterenchock is a social change advocate and marketing professional who resides in the Greater Hazleton area. Originally raised in the north-metro Atlanta area, she moved here in 2004, graduating from Hazleton Area High School in 2007. Jocelyn earned an associate degree in business from the McCann School of Business & Technology in 2011 as well as a bachelor degree in marketing from Central Penn College in 2019. During her professional career, she has held positions within numerous sectors, including working as a marketing assistant for an international infrastructure operations and maintenance company, overseeing marketing and promotion for a regional optometry practice, and consulting on strategic marketing initiatives for the Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress.

Currently, Jocelyn holds the position of Coordinator of Entrepreneurial Services for Greater Hazleton CAN DO and is responsible for forwarding entrepreneurship in Greater Hazleton through the CAN BE Innovation Center, a small business incubator, in Valmont Industrial Park. Jocelyn guides clients through a program that is designed to help nurture new businesses through the start-up phase. She oversees the development and management of CAN BE’s support programs for entrepreneurs, which include offering resident consultation and management assistance, access to financing opportunities, networking with other start-up companies and access to technical support services. Additionally, she provides leadership in the procurement and management of programmatic funding for CAN BE and handles the overall promotion of entrepreneurship in Greater Hazleton.

Jocelyn also served as the Executive Director of Hazleton POWER!, a nonprofit organization that was formed as a support network to enhance the ability to attract and retain the knowledge and talent necessary to build a better economic future in the area. During her time with POWER!, she has successfully spearheaded several community events, including the annual “Art at the Markle,” which attracts hundreds of people to view the artwork of more than 40 local artists. She has also managed fundraising initiatives for local nonprofit organizations and coordinated many community activities, including live music events, free outdoor movie series, and a widely attended vigil to celebrate the LGBT lives lost in the Orlando nightclub shooting in 2016. Outside of her numerous personal and professional responsibilities related to the downtown and entrepreneurship, Jocelyn continues advocating for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation. Having raised over $12,000 in funds, she participates in their endurance training division, Team Challenge.

Jocelyn enjoys spending down time with her wife of four years, Megan, and their dog, Mac, hiking and exploring small town gems throughout Pennsylvania.

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Lauren Beppler
Community Engagement Specialist
NET Credit Union

Corporate Finance Starts With Personal Finance


Taking your business idea to the next level often starts with the reality of digging in own your pocket.  Join Lauren to learn more about the importance of personal finance basics including:

  • What is a credit score and why is it important?
  • How does someone qualify for a credit card and when can you open a personal checking account?
  • What are the good habits you need to start with (and the bad ones to avoid!)

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Holly Pilcavage
Director of Operations and Business Development
Coal Creative

Artists are Entrepreneurs Too 


Entrepreneurship comes in many forms.

Do you have a passion for writing, art, film, or some other creative avenue?  Join Holly Pilcavage, one of NEPA’s foremost arts activists, to learn more about how to connect with fellow regional creatives and also explore various pathways to achieve your artistic dream.  

In her role as “The Left Side of the Brain”, or more formally known as Director of Operations & Business Development, Holly is responsible for implementing new directives and developing long-term operational strategies. On a consistent basis, she analyzes current operational processes and performance, recommending solutions for improvement when necessary. Holly also develops and coordinates task management systems, payroll, client relations, employee engagement, guidelines for staff management, recruitment and promotion. With overall growth and expansion within the area as a constant focus, she fosters relationships with the local colleges and universities through presentations, on-site business visits, and our holistic student internship program. On pretty much any given week, you can find Holly happily and energetically representing Coal Creative at various community events, conferences, and programs.

After earning her Master’s in Higher Education Administration and Bachelor’s in Business Management, Holly initially found herself working within the higher educational system. Compelled by a quarter-life crisis, she ended a yearlong 9-5 cubicle job, ventured across the country, and earned her life coaching certification. Change was ahead, and when she began her return trek back to her hometown roots in Northeastern Pennsylvania, Holly promised herself it would all be worthwhile. In October 2016, she spent her first day at Coal Creative painting the walls of the new office space – no title, and not really sure what was next for her or for the company.

Back in 2016, she quite literally spent hours Googling “what does a director of business development do” and began creating actionable plans, goals, and projects based on the subsequent search results. Paired with her business and education degrees and doused with an innate natural passion for connecting human beings to one another, Holly’s gut and intuition have guided her in every “right” direction to date.

The word “Connector” is often used to describe our Director, so it comes as no surprise that in her free time she founded an online writing community whose mission is to foster positive human development and connections through story sharing – which she dubbed “Project Wednesday”. Holly is also an active community member dedicating her time to organizations including, but not limited to Dress for Success Luzerne County, Empowerment Education, Social Fabric Collective, United Way of Wyoming Valley, and Leadership Wilkes-Barre.

Holly’s favorite project to date is Coal Creative’s own internal rebrand. Reframing has been key to every success. She believes we’re bigger than this workspace. She knows we’re bigger than this town. In her own words, “I have never felt closer to these people that I get to call my colleagues and my friends. I have never felt such unimaginable energy from every individual at once. To me, that is incredible – life-changing, even.”

Feel free to connect with Holly on LinkedIn (

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366952-2f59ad47-83b7-7156-5_speakerMarty Wolff – Co-Presenting with Bob Courtright
Executive/Business Coach, Business Builders Show Podcast

International Networking


Networking is not schmoozing. Networking is the process of sharing and engaging for the benefit of you and others. Whether you are an experienced professional, or just getting started, join workshop hosts Marty Wolff and Bob Courtright to discuss tips and strategies for creating networking opportunities that produce real, satisfying, results.

Marty Wolff is a serial entrepreneur, business coach, and business journalist. In addition to his coaching and consulting practice, Marty hosts a regional radio show, Business Leaders Radio and a nationally recognized podcast, the Business Builders Show. Marty’s skill in securing well-known guests for his shows are a direct result of his skills as a master networker. Marty is on the board of the Northeast PA Networkers.

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366952-4d5a8104-dd50-d76c-9_speakerBob Courtright – Co-Presenting with Marty Wolff
Courtright & Associates, Inc.



Robert J. Courtright is President of Courtright & Associates, Inc., a retained executive search consulting, business development & outplacement firm, located in Scranton, PA. Mr. Courtright founded the firm in 1989. He also offers business, Networking & Linkedin consulting services. He is Chairman of the Northeast PA Networkers.

It has become obvious to students who are graduating high school and/or college that a diploma is no longer a bridge to a successful life or career. The ability to understand and implement networking skills are vital for personal and professional success. This also pertains to individuals already in the workplace who want to do better where they are at now or to move on to a new opportunity. This workshop is designed to go beyond fundamental networking and will teach you how to not only connect with people but positively influence them.

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We’re Launching

Mike Grobinski




Mike Grobinski is a co-founder of Kraken Boardsports, a Wilkes-Barre company that specializes in products for sports enthusiasts.

Kraken customers see potential everywhere. An empty field of snow is a blank template, ready to be sculpted into something incredible. An empty lot can be a skatepark. Between Mike’s love of sport, and his co-founder’s passion for product design, Kraken is constantly engineering products that are lighter, faster and “funner” for the common thrill seeker.

Mike is a graduate of Wilkes University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering and is an avid snow, skate, and wake boarder. If you ask him what they really do at Kraken he’ll probably tell you “we build stuff to have as much fun as possible”.

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