We are pleased to announce new appointments to officer positions within our various subsidiaries, effective October 1, 2019. The following are biographies of each of the new appointees:
Melissa J. Whitney, MBA, PMP – Chief Strategy and Information Officer
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Melissa Whitney comes to RPHC with more than 15 years’ experience in leadership positions for large international firms, including experience in both information technology and accounting. She also has direct experience in the disaster recovery industry, having served as a Senior Project Manager for Atkins overseeing all aspects of joint venture operations for an initial $163 million federal contract with task order awards ultimately exceeding $300 million. As part of that project, she managed a team of more than 600 staff supporting 6,000 contracted inspectors who completed more than one million disaster housing inspections in less than 100 days – including a record-breaking 24,000 inspections completed in a single day. She also led the joint venture through a successful ISO 9001:2008 recertification audit. She holds a MBA with a concentration in Accounting and anticipates the completion of her MS in Information Systems/Information Assurance in Fall 2019. She is a certified Project Management Professional specializing in planning and execution of strategic initiatives, resource planning and development, data analysis, business process analysis, and organizational change. She has developed business plans for Enterprise Technology initiatives for multinational engineering firms, provided recommendations for enterprise-level systems and integration strategies, and overseen the programming and development of IT systems and databases for multi-million-dollar contracts.
Judy Wolf – Senior Director of Communications and Marketing
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Judy Wolf was a key part of our business development team for 10 years, including serving as Director of Business Development and heading up our proposal writing efforts – assisting with wins in the states of New York, Alaska, and Hawaii as part of that portfolio. She holds a Masters in Management, with a concentration in Emergency Management and Business Continuity, and served multiple times in the field on projects including the Iowa floods, Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, and NYS Public Assistance program damages from Hurricane Sandy, as well as leading the team that updated the New York State Hazard Mitigation Plan in just four short months. Prior to that she held positions as an Internal Communications Supervisor at United Parcel Service, Director of Corporate Communications at the fourth-largest independent living center in the nation, and Senior Writer at an advertising agency serving national and global accounts. She is also a certified professional coach recognized by the International Coach Federation and a Small Business Advisor certified by the SBA’s Small Business Development Center network.
Assistant Vice Presidents
Kenneth Baker – Director of Federal Program Accounting
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Ken Baker joined the team in November 2018 as RPHC’s Director of Federal Program Accounting, which includes primary responsibility for the management of finance, contracts, and procurement for the Vanguard joint venture and the design and implementation of DCAA-compliant processes and procedures. He is overseeing Vanguard’s accounting system transition from Deltek Costpoint to Sage Intacct and has played a key role in identifying, elevating, and mitigating financial risk across the FEMA HIS program. He continues to build upon SCA- and DOL-compliant practices for RPHC and our subcontractors and applies his strong analytic and mathematical skills stemming from a computer engineering background to assist with developing, testing, and implementing system requirements and improving financial process automations. Prior to joining our team, Ken held Operations Accounting Manager and Finance Manager roles at Louis Berger, including management of the Vanguard joint venture.
Sheila Manek – Senior Director of Housing and Infrastructure
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Sheila Manek joined the Tidal Basin team in April 2019 as a Senior Director of our Housing and Infrastructure Business Unit in the Post-Disaster Recovery Group. Sheila holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering and brings 15 years of experience in design engineering and project management for multinational engineering firms. She most recently held a director position at APTIM (formerly CB&I) for nearly eight years. Since joining the RPHC team, she has been managing our teams that oversaw the closeout of the PR STEP program and the kickoff of the PR CDBG-DR Program Management project.
Lori Nichols – Human Resources Director
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Lori Nichols recently joined the RPHC team as our Human Resources Director. Lori brings 20+ years of leadership and management experience with diverse groups and cultures. She most recently served as Vice President/Director of Human Resources for Adirondack Bank, where she was responsible for the interpretation and implementation of personnel policies and procedures, recruitment and interviewing, employee benefit programs, training and development programs and activities, compliance and reporting, and payroll, among other responsibilities. Prior to that, she had a long career at director, manager, and supervisor levels in a variety of industries. Lori is a member of the National Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and its Mohawk Valley chapter, is a graduate of Leadership Mohawk Valley, and holds training certificates from the Disney Institute in the areas of Selection, Training and Engagement; Approach to Business Excellence; and Customer Service.
Sheila Salvatore – Director of Communications
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Sheila Salvatore serves as RPHC’s Director of Communications, a position she has held since March 2016. Prior to that, she was Manager of Communications for nine years, a position she had previously held with us for over nine years before taking a hiatus to raise her family – thus bringing her total tenure with the company to over 20 years. She has extensive experience in both the corporate and nonprofit worlds, with specialties that include communication, marketing, brand management, publication production, copywriting, fundraising, and media relations. She currently oversees the publication and distribution of our various publications, including our flagship Adjusting Today and Disaster Recovery Today, as well as coordinating the production of marketing materials for AI’s public adjusting firms.
Frank Sardelli, MBA – Director of Project Accounting
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Frank Sardelli is RPHC’s Director of Project Accounting for all Tidal Basin projects, with over seven years’ experience in financial reporting functions. He has been involved in all aspects of financial reporting, with a special emphasis in pricing for cost proposals as a key contributor to our proposal development team. He has also provided vital financial analysis on projects and served as Project Manager responding to an audit on a Disaster Case Management FEMA grant (DR-4085 DCM) related to NYS Hurricane Sandy funding. His past employment experience prior to joining RPHC includes serving as an accountant at a national insurance group, where he was responsible for financial statement preparation, as well as an array of analysis functions. He also served as a tax accountant for a local CPA firm.
Ted Saroney, CPA/PFS, CFE – Controller
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Ted Saroney serves as RPHC’s Controller, having joined the company in April 2019 following a more than 20-year career in accounting. As Controller, Ted is involved with various financial and operational aspects of the organization, with responsibilities including management, reporting, compliance, and oversight of accounting policies and procedures. Prior to joining RPHC, Ted gained 20+ years of extensive financial and managerial experience in the public and private sectors gaining valuable insight as to the needs of growing companies by leveraging effective internal controls and providing leadership needed for a sustainable culture. With a wealth of experience and as a licensed Certified Public Accountant, Ted has a creative and interdisciplinary approach to the complexities and challenges facing organizations today.
Bill Slater – Senior Director of Public Assistance and Recovery
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Currently serving as Senior Director of the Public Assistance and Recovery Business Unit for our Post-Disaster Recovery Group, Bill Slater is an emergency management professional and former law enforcement officer, former fire fighter, and emergency medical technician. While with our firm, Bill has served as the Deputy Liaison to the PA Branch Chief for NYS on their recovery from Hurricane Sandy and as the Deputy Operations Chief and Public Assistance Group Supervisor for the State of Hawaii overseeing their recovery from Tropical Storm Iselle and the Puʻu ʻŌʻō Lava flow. Prior to joining us seven years ago, Bill spent more than 20 years in law enforcement and in supervisory roles that eventually led to his assignment as a station commander. He served at the “ground zero” New York City Mayor’s command post following the September 11, 2001 World Trade Center Terrorist attack in support of rescue and recovery efforts. He was subsequently selected by the New York State Office of Emergency Management as a member of the initial cadre of New York State’s Type II All-Hazards Incident Management Team. William is a certified trainer, having provided instruction in police, fire and emergency management related curriculum for more than 18 years as well as oversight of other instructors.