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Niagara Falls Bridge Commission Elects 2015 Officers | People

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Niagara Falls Bridge Commission Elects 2015 Officers

Kathleen L. Neville is elected Chair

LEWISTON, NEW YORK - The Niagara Falls Bridge Commission (NFBC), the bi-national entity that owns and operates the Rainbow, Whirlpool Rapids and Lewiston-Queenston Bridges between Canada and the United States, elected its 2015 slate of officers during the Commission’s Annual General Meeting. Kathleen L. Neville of the State of New York was elected Chairperson and Kenneth E. Loucks of the Province of Ontario was elected Vice-Chairperson. In addition, Russell G. Quarantello of the State of New York was elected Secretary and Linda L. McAusland of the Province of Ontario was elected Treasurer. Frank Soda of the State of New York, Janice A. Thomson of the Province of Ontario, Harry R. Palladino of the State of New York, and Ernest K. Smith of the Province of Ontario, comprise the other members of the NFBC board.

U.S. Commissioners serve at the pleasure of the Governor of the State of New York, and Canadian Commissioners serve at the pleasure of the Premier of the Province of Ontario. All officers hold their respective office for one-year until the next annual meeting, unless the Commission deems a change is necessary.

Appointed to the Commission in March 2012, Ms. Kathleen Neville, a resident of Wilson, New York, is a public relations professional. Ms. Neville previously served as senior vice president at Hill and Knowlton Public Relations International in New York City and as a senior consultant at Ketchum Public Relations in Washington, D.C. She is a former managing director of Shea’s Performing Arts Center in Buffalo and the author of several non-fiction books and articles on conduct in today’s workplaces, schools and sports. She also serves on the board of directors of the New York Council for the Humanities. A past television and radio broadcaster, Ms. Neville obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing from the Rochester Institute of Technology and a graduate teaching fellowship in English/Communications from Niagara University where she will also receive a Master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies this May.

Dr. Kenneth Loucks, a resident of Sauble Beach, Ontario, and formerly of St. Catharines, Ontario, was appointed to the Commission in April 2006, and served as Chairperson in 2010. Dr. Loucks is Professor Emeritus of the Faculty of Business, Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, and the holder of HBA, MBA and PhD degrees from the Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario. His career in education encompasses appointments at two secondary schools and three universities in Ontario and two adjunct appointments in Australia. He is a specialist in entrepreneurship and business strategy. Throughout his career, Dr. Loucks has maintained an active management consulting practice. He has served as well as a consultant to bilateral and multilateral development agencies in small enterprise creation and economic development programming with assignments in over 30 countries. During his career he has served on numerous public and private sector boards and commissions.

Immediate past Chairperson Mr. Ernest Smith was appointed to the Commission in November 2009.  He is a resident of Niagara Falls, Ontario, and is retired from Canada Immigration after more than 31 years of service with experience in such areas as enforcement, operations and intelligence. Since retiring, Mr. Smith has been contracted by the International Region of Citizenship & Immigration Canada to work as a visa officer in England, Hong Kong, Trinidad, Saudi Arabia and the United States. Mr. Smith, a graduate of Stamford C.I., holds a B.A. from Waterloo Lutheran University (now Wilfrid Laurier University) in Ontario, and a Master’s degree from Niagara University in New York State.

Mr. Quarantello was appointed to the Commission in March 2012 and resides in Lewiston, New York. He currently serves as the Business Manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local #237. Mr. Quarantello is a master electrician who has worked for numerous electric contractors over the years, including the Carborundum Co., Viatran Corp., and the U.S. Small Business Administration. He was elected to his position as the union local’s principal officer in 2007.

Appointed to the Commission in March 2012, Mr. Frank Soda retired in 2010 after a 41-year teaching career. He resides in Niagara Falls, New York, and holds a BA and MA from Niagara University and an MS from Buffalo State College. He taught at Niagara Falls High School for 23 years and is also an adjunct at Erie Community College and Niagara University. A former Niagara Falls City Council member, twice, he also served on the Love Canal Area Revitalization Agency.

Ms. Janice A. Thomson, a resident of Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, was appointed to the Commission in April 2006 and has previously served as Secretary, following two years as Chairperson (2007 and 2008). She was actively involved in the reconstruction of the Queenston Plaza, serving as liaison between the Board of Commissioners and the Design and Construction Team, accountable to the Federal Government as Project Co-Chair. She presently occupies the position of Executive Director of the Niagara-on-the-Lake Chamber of Commerce and Visitor & Convention Bureau, and previously held executive management positions at the national offices of Jaguar Canada and BMW Canada over an 18-year period. Ms. Thomson also serves as Chair of the Niagara Parks Commission, a board member of the Niagara Foundation and board member of the Toronto 2015 PanAm/ParapanAm Games, and serves on many tourism-related committees within Niagara.

Appointed to the Commission in March of 2014, Mr. Harry R. Palladino, a resident of Gasport, New York, currently serves as the Business Manager of Laborers’ Local 91, and has served in various positions throughout his extensive career with the organization. He is also the owner/operator of Palladino Paving and Construction. 

Ms. Linda L. McAusland, a resident of Welland, Ontario, was appointed to the Commission in February of 2014. Ms. McAusland is currently the Assistant Deputy Minister and Chief Administrative Officer for the Ontario Ministry of Transportation where she provides leadership for Human Resources, Financial Planning, Controllership, Facilities, Emergency Management, Procurement and Freedom of Information. Commissioner McAusland has previously served on the Board of Directors for the McMaster Institute of Transportation Logistics, Canadian Transportation Research Forum and the North American Strategy for Competitiveness. She has her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Waterloo and has attended the Public Executive Program at Queen’s University and the Executive Leadership Program at the Niagara Institute.

About the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission:

A Joint Resolution of the 1938 U.S. Congressional Third Session created the Niagara Falls Bridge Commission. The Extra Provincial Corporations Act of the Province of Ontario, Canada licenses the NFBC. Canada and the U.S. are equally represented on the NFBC by an eight-member Board of Commissioners.  Initially established to finance, construct and operate the Rainbow Bridge, the Commission proved sufficiently efficient and effective to assume responsibilities for the Whirlpool Rapids (Lower) and Lewiston-Queenston Bridges.  The NFBC builds and maintains all facilities for Customs and Immigration functions on both sides of the international border. The NFBC is self-supportive, largely through user fees (tolls) and private-sector tenant leases. NFBC is federally chartered to conduct international commercial financial transactions and issue federal (U.S.) tax-exempt bonds.

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