-ON THE AGENDA-
By Elizabeth Perry
Greg Clarke is officially manager of Kennedy Township, ending Mel Weinstein’s three-year tenure as interim manager.
Weinstein, who had been filling the manager position since 2019, is still treasurer and tax collector of the township.
Clarke’s hiring was introduced at an Aug. 22 council meeting and finalized at the township’s Sept. 8 meeting.
“He brings a wealth of knowledge,” said Weinstein, before inviting Clarke to move from the audience to sit in his chair after the unanimous vote.
Clarke thanked Weinstein and then addressed the room, saying he’d grown up in Thornburg and lived in Kennedy for 50 years. He lauded the low millage rate in Kennedy, and the fact most employees of the township were also residents.
“I’m privileged and I’m thrilled. I work for the residents. I answer to the board,” Clarke said.
Weinstein said he’d spent the last few weeks with Clarke to help him get acclimated.
“It’s going to be a pleasure for me to continue to teach,” Weinstein said.
Weinstein has held the manager position since the resignation of Gerry Orsini in 2019.
As previously reported in the Gazette 2.0, Weinstein, who has been involved in Kennedy politics since 1973, was immediately appointed Orsini’s successor when the latter resigned in August 2019 amid accusations of township misconduct.
A replacement for Orsini was announced one week after his departure, but that was quickly rescinded when the candidate was apprehended by the Washington County Police Department on charges of drunk driving and a history of alcohol-related issues was uncovered.
Weinstein had stepped in as interim manager before, during the late 1990s when Orsini, during a previous tenure in the job, resigned.
Prior to his appointment, Clarke served as a director on the Montour School Board for 10 years over a 12-year period. In an interview after the meeting, he said there are many similarities between his experience in the school district and the township manager position. In both roles, he said he would work with personnel, unions and the budget.
Clarke and his wife, Karen, once owned the Shop ‘n Save on Noblestown Road near Crafton Heights. Along with his brother and niece, Clarke is part of a company called Integrated Dispense Systems LLC, which manufactures fast-pour beer dispensing systems for arenas, stadiums and other high-volume venues. Though Clarke was once the vice president of business development for the company of which his brother is president, Clarke said his own interest in the business is now more of a hobby.
Clarke is also a district export council member for Pennsylvania, a non-profit organization that lobbies on behalf of exporters.
“No matter where you go in any type of industry or government, you’re dealing with revenue and personnel,” Clarke said. “All of those things really relate and translate.”
Clarke praised the experienced, knowledgeable Kennedy Township staff whom he felt would help him deal with whatever challenges would arise. He also praised his predecessor.
“There’s nobody wiser than Mr. Weinstein,” Clarke said.