- November 23, 2022
LION stands for “Leaders in Our Neighborhood,” and no one represents this better than Don Noviello, Republican candidate for Williamsport Mayor in the upcoming May 21st primary. Don has possibly the most complete resume a candidate for local office could have. Business background – check. Community service – check. Advanced education – check. Political experience
LION stands for “Leaders in Our Neighborhood,” and no one represents this better than Don Noviello, Republican candidate for Williamsport Mayor in the upcoming May 21st primary. Don has possibly the most complete resume a candidate for local office could have. Business background – check. Community service – check. Advanced education – check. Political experience – check again. If anyone was ever tailor-made for an office, Don Noviello seems like he was born to be a mayor for the city of Williamsport.
And yes, he was born in Williamsport, graduating from Williamsport Area High School in 1968. Not exactly clear on his future career, Don had a lot of itches he had to scratch. He married, had two sons, and worked a number of odd jobs until the mid-1980s when he decided to open his own deli. He learned management from the ground floor and eventually became manager for the Williamsport Wheel Club. For seven years he learned to interact with lawyers, doctors, and professionals who were members of the Club, but his best efforts could not keep alive an institution that had passed its prime. So, at age 38, Don Noviello decided to go back to school.
He enrolled at Penn College in an associates degree in Human Services program and realized it would not be enough education for his goals. Several instructors took an interest in this middle-aged student and were impressed in his talents. (One example of this was his participation with the school’s Debating Team that won victories over powerhouses, Yale and Harvard!) Through his mentors’ encouragement, Noviello applied to Bucknell University, where he graduated in 1992 with a degree in education, and then went back a year later for his Master’s.
Teaching was Don Noviello’s calling, combining his own innate quest for knowledge and also his strong interest in youth advocacy. He is especially proud to have served the past ten years on the Annual Williamsport Soap Box Derby Steering Committee. He notes that it is the only SBD in the country that sponsors every child who wishes to compete. It takes tremendous community cooperation to make that happen, and Don Noviello is on the front line of that effort.
But besides teaching State and Local Government, World History and Sociology at Penn College, as well as being actively involved in community groups, Noviello still wanted to serve more. Mayor Campana needed help on the Williamsport Parking Authority during a contentious time with the Kohl’s project, and Don accepted the challenge. After two years with the Authority, he decided to step up to running for Williamsport City Council.
His two terms on Williamsport City Council has given Don Noviello a very clear picture of the status of the city and what it needs to develop and grow. He puts a high emphasis on leadership — a need to get people to work together as a team looking for remedies and not looking for someone to blame for problems. In the past he even worked as a union steward for the Steel Worker’s Union, so he believes he understands the needs of unions and how to relate to them. His interest in young people stretches to the two colleges in the city. He believes that Williamsport does not benefit enough from their presence, and should find ways to make the city more of an accommodating, modern, and creatively active place where they would be more inclined to put down roots.
Don Noviello does not talk like a politician, because he is a man for all seasons. He has a rare combination of professional experience and a first-rate education. A man who looks much younger than his age, he attributes his health and vitality to his loving wife, Paulette.
Williamsport faces the same challenges as most small cities in Pennsylvania and the entire country, and to address those challenges will need a leader that would be bold and innovative, yet steady, mature, and experienced. In Don Noviello, Williamsport voters will have just such a man to choose as their future mayor.1 comment