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Three of Pennsylvania's leading business executives and Lycoming College graduates will return to campus to participate in a panel discussion titled “Lycoming College Innovators and Entrepreneurs,” on Thursday, April 4 at 7 p.m. in Heim Building G-11. The event is part of the College’s spring symposium on entrepreneurship and is being hosted by the Institute for Management Studies. Participants include Jay. W. Cleveland Jr., president and CEO of Cleveland Brothers Equipment Co. Inc., Ron “Buddy” Knoebel, owner of Knoebels Amusement Resort, and Michael Warehime, chairman of Snyder’s-Lance Co. Moderator will be Bill Kelly, president and CEO of WVIA Public Media and host of the “Northeast Pennsylvania Business Journal,” which airs on WVIA TV and FM.
Cleveland earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration in 1988 from Lycoming, where he played four years of varsity basketball. He joined Cleveland Brothers shortly after graduation as a management trainee. He later held positions as vice president of product support and executive vice president, adding the responsibility for the company’s engine division. Cleveland was named president and CEO of Cleveland Brothers in 2000. In 2001, he was named dealer principal by Caterpillar.
Cleveland is the son of Jay W. Cleveland, past chairman of the board, and the grandson of Royal E. Cleveland, founder of Cleveland Brothers Equipment Co. Inc. He serves on the Lycoming College Board of Trustees, Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation Board of Trustees and the Harrisburg University President’s Advisory Council. He is also a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization Pittsburgh Chapter.
Knoebel is a 1965 graduate of Lycoming, where he majored in sociology. He became Lycoming’s first NCAA wrestling champion, winning the 137-pound national title in 1965. In 1986, Knoebel was inducted into Lycoming’s Athletics Hall of Fame.
Knoebels is America’s largest, free-admission amusement park and has been owned and operated by the Knoebel family since 1926. The park features two world-class roller coasters, nearly 60 other rides and award-winning food.
The 2012 Golden Ticket Awards, presented by “Amusement Today,” has Knoebels ranked in the top four internationally in the following categories: best park, friendliest park, best food, best indoor coaster, best carousel and best dark ride. “The Phoenix” is ranked third among the top 50 wooden roller coasters in the world.
Warehime earned a bachelor’s in economics from Lycoming in 1964. He has more than 40 years of experience in the food industry. The newly formed Snyder’s-Lance Co. finished 2012 with $1.62 billion in net revenues. Its primary brands include Snyder’s of Hanover Pretzels, Lance Sandwich Crackers and Cape Cod Potato Chips along with newly acquired Snack Factory Pretzel Crisps. Warehime owns a crab cake company with the Dockside label based in Philadelphia and a small $70 million asset-based private lending company. He also was chairman and director of Farmer’s Bank & Trust of Hanover.
Warehime also attended the University of Toledo Law School and has served on college and high school boards, as well as other business boards.
Lycoming College is a four-year, residential liberal arts and sciences school dedicated to the undergraduate education of 1,400 students. Its rigorous academic program, vibrant residential community and supportive faculty foster successful student outcomes. Lycoming offers 36 academic majors and is recognized as a Tier 1 institution by U.S. News & World Report. Founded in 1812 and located near the banks of the Susquehanna River in Williamsport, Pa., Lycoming is one of the 50 oldest colleges in the nation. For more information, visit www.lycoming.edu.
Jay Cleveland Jr.
Ron (Buddy) Knoebel