WARREN, Pennsylvania – Friday, September 22 – Tom Wolf, Governor of Pennsylvania, visited multiple Warren businesses today as a part of a three-day, 14 county trip down Route 6, to study business development and rural economic issues.
“As I have traveled the state visiting communities and listening to people working in manufacturing, schools, healthcare and tourism, it is clear that we’re working together to create jobs and improve communities,” said Governor Wolf. “It is important for the state to hear from communities in every part of the Commonwealth to learn how we can support them and see the progress being made in economic development, education, and workforce training.”
Prior to his tour in Warren in the afternoon, the Governor visited Zippo Manufacturing in the morning followed by a trip to the scenic Kinzua Bridge State Park. His team’s first stop in Warren was at the historic Plaza Restaurant in downtown Warren where he was greeted by Lincoln Sokolski, President of Whirley Industries, Commissioner Jeff Eggleston, Kelli Knapp, Director of the Warren Public Library, as well as the Warren County Planning and Zoning Department, led by Dan Glotz, as well as many others. The Governor was impressed with the Downtown and he and his wife, Frances, enjoyed their lunch with their staff.
Commissioner Eggleston said, “The Plaza Staff and owner Jim Douvlos did a marvelous job accommodating the Governor and his crew. It was an honor to have a sitting Pennsylvania Governor eating lunch at a restaurant in Warren, and I am sure that Tom Wolf got the best Warren had to offer today. They should be commended.”
Next, Governor Wolf and the First Lady travelled to Whirley Industries for a presentation and tour. There was a large troop of local leaders eager to greet the Governor and welcome him to the facility. They included Representative Kathy Rapp, representatives from Scott Hutchinson’s office, Commissioner Chair Ben Kafferlin, Commissioner Jeff Eggleston and Warren City Mayor Maurice Cashman.
The initial presentation by Lincoln Sokolski, President of Whirley Industries, was extensive and showcased the growth of the company and the variety of products it offers internationally.
Commissioner Chair, Ben Kafferlin, said, “Thank you to Whirley Drinkworks for the opportunity to tour and well done – we were so proud to showcase such a great business to the Governor.”
“Frankly, although I was impressed with the Governor’s trip and his general willingness to learn about our area, I was even more impressed with Lincoln Sokolski and Whirley Industries,” commented Commissioner Eggleston. “What he highlighted was the spirit of hard work and entrepreneurial vision that is the hallmark of Warren County industry. Whirley did an amazing job showcasing the best this County has to offer and I think they should be commended.”
The presentation, which focused on Whirley’s overall while growth while operating with a commitment to reducing waste and recycling, then led to a comprehensive tour of the Whirley manufacturing facility on Harmar Street. Governor Wolf and the other dignitaries in attendance were impressed with the level of innovation and detail displayed in the operation.
“It was an honor to welcome Governor Wolf to Warren.” Said Commissioner Chair Ben Kafferlin. “I’d like to thank him for taking the time to visit Warren and meet with us. I’m glad he and his staff got to experience a taste of Warren County. Touring Whirley and learning more about the success of manufacturing was a highlight of the day. For the elected officials there, I hope it helps us better understand how government can help or hinder local business.”
“I couldn’t be prouder to be a Warren County citizen today,” said Commissioner Eggleston. “The local businesses and the community welcomed the Governor and really did an amazing job showing him the best we have to offer. He and his team continually commented on what a beautiful place this area was and what a wonderful time they were having learning about all we do. I think we hit it out of the park today.”
They finished the day with a visit to the Marienville Oktoberfest. On Saturday, Sept. 23, Gov. Wolf and the First Lady will visit Elk County, Jefferson County and Clearfield County with stops at the Elk County Visitors Center, BWP Bats, and the Harmony Grange Fair.