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Printing Industries of America’s Ben Franklin Honor Society Inducts Five New Members

Friday, November 20, 2015

Press release from the issuing company

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - The Ben Franklin Honor Society of Printing Industries of America (PIA) formally inducted five industry leaders at its reception and awards ceremony on Friday, November 13, at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The Ben Franklin Honor Society of PIA is comprised of industry leaders who have made lasting contributions to advancing print and graphic communications. Potential inductees must render outstanding and/or meritorious service to associations such as PIA, its affiliates, the Print and Graphics Scholarship Foundation (PGSF), and the industry.

Jeff Ekstein—Ekstein has been an officer on the PIA board and a member of its executive committee since 2011. He served as the Education Committee Chairman from 2009 to 2011 and currently acts as a finance committee member. He has also judged the Premier Print Awards since 2006.

In addition to his involvement in PIA, he served as Co-Chair of CPISC (Canadian Printing Industries Sector Council) as well as Past Chair, Government Affairs Committee Chair, and as a long-time Director of CPIA (Canadian Printing Industries Association). In 2007, CPIA awarded Ekstein the Distinguished Service Award for excellence, achievement, and dedication to the printing industry. Print Action Magazine also named him as one of the Top 20 Most Influential Printers in 2010.

Ekstein volunteers and fundraises for various charities, including the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s “Ride for Heart” and CCFC’s (Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of Canada) “Gutsy Walk.” In his spare time, Eskstein and his wife Linda enjoy spending quality time with their three children Carley, Arlen, and Alexandra.

Thomas Gardner—Gardner spent decades serving his local affiliate, PINE, and was elected as its chairman. He acted as Chairman of the Board and served on many committees for NAQP, including the merger of NAQP and NAPL. Gardner was also inducted into the NAPL’s Soderstrom Society. NAQP chose him as Quick Printer of the Year in 2005. On a national level, Tom acted as the PINE representative and served as a finance committee member on the PIA National Board. Gardner since retired, but he continues his involvement in the industry. 

Gardner stays active in his community by serving as a board member of Big Brothers & Sisters of Central Massachusetts and acting as past president of the Rotary Club and Chamber of Commerce in Worcester.

Jay K. Goldscher—Goldscher serves as President and CEO for Printing and Graphics Association MidAtlantic (PGAMA).  As such, Goldscher educates and advocates the print and graphic communication industry to various public officials and the general public. Goldscher promotes good business practices in the areas of recycling, sustainable environmental practices, and efficient use of clean energy sources. His involvement with programs in the secondary school and college levels allows him to advise, train, and share his passion.

Goldscher held leadership positions with HBP in Hagerstown, Maryland, Whitmore Group of Annapolis, Maryland, Graphec in Howard County, Maryland, and Wolk Press. He served on the PIA Board of Directors as well on many other committees. Before accepting his current role, he also served as PIA’s Marketing Committee Chairman. He chaired the Government Affairs Committee for PGAMA, served as Chairman of the Board for Printing Industries of Maryland (now PGAMA), and participated in several other leadership rolls within the organization. 

Aside from his work in the industry, Goldscher holds various positions with Local 72 Union as a Pension Fund Trustee, a member of the Board of Directors for the Jewish Museum of Maryland and Temple Isaiah, and many other community organizations.

Joseph S. Polanco—Polanco published several industry trade articles and journals and teaches management courses related to the graphic arts industry. Polanco joined PIA Texas (now PIA-MidAmerica) in 1984 as their Director of Management Services. Currently, he serves as the association’s President and directs their activities in the educational, legislative, and regulatory efforts. Polanco also serves on several committees for the PIA.

Polanco plays a major role in collecting data for the industry Wage & Benefit Survey—a publication relied on by many organizations. He also served as the Affiliate Manager Operating Committee Chair.  Polanco co-chairs the Dallas Small Business Advisory Council, an advisory group for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

Rachel Ann Shattah—Shattah was recognized as an outstanding representative of the print industry in 1977 when she was awarded the Ben Franklin Award for her efforts in the reorganization of the Printing and Imaging Association of Georgia (PIAG). Recently, Shattah was honored with the PIAG 35 Years of Outstanding Service Award. While holding the Executive VP of Relations and Director of Government Affairs position, she increased membership 21 percent and membership revenue 20 percent in the PIAG region. In 2001 the Cliff Clarke award recognized her for an outstanding career in leadership and service to associations in Georgia.  

Shattah believes the greatest reward is helping people succeed. She continues her dedication to the community through her participation as Secretary/Treasurer of the Brain Tumor Foundation for Children, Fundraiser Director for the Muscular Dystrophy Association in Smyrna and several other national charitable organizations. 

For more information on the Ben Franklin Honor Society, including historical documentation and bylaws, visit www.printing.org/honorsociety.


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