|Lazin Series Brings Four High-Profile Alumni & Business Leaders to Campus
Entering its 15th year at Lebanon Valley College, the Lazin series annually brings an exclusive group of alumni and business leaders to campus to provide students with an inside look into a variety of professions and post-graduate opportunities. LVC trustee Malcolm Lazin ’65 started the program in memory of his father, Norman Lazin ’37, as a way to bring high-profile graduates to the classroom for the benefit of current students.
"This innovative program provides students with an invaluable introduction to a variety of professions, post-graduate possibilities, and real world perspectives,” said Steven O’Day, special assistant to the president for innovative programs. “In addition, it provides our Lazin residents with an opportunity to participate in classroom discussions with faculty and students, to meet informally with student groups and academic departments and, most importantly, to become immersed in the remarkable LVC learning community during one of the most active times of the academic year. By sharing their experiences, expertise and perspective, our Lazin residents make an immediate impact on our students."
This year, the College will host Malcolm Lazin, Gregory Hessinger Esq. ’87, Hon. Richard Gray, Dr. Marianne Boltz ’92, and Douglas Byers M’12 on April 1 and 2.
“The Lazin Series illustrates the impact members of the entire LVC network of alumni, parents, and friends can have on our students and future alumni,” said Jayanne Hayward ’01, director of alumni & parent engagement. “The caliber of the professionals who devote their time and energies to engage with individual students, small groups, and faculty is impressive and truly broadens the perspectives of everyone involved.”
Lazin, who earned a B.S. in biology at LVC and a J.D. from Boston University School of Law, is executive director of Equality Forum, a national and international GLBT civil rights organization with an educational focus. He was a federal prosecutor and led successful major grand jury investigations into public corruption. Lazin received the U.S. Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award, the Department of Justice’s highest honor. He served as a commissioner and then chair of the Pennsylvania Crime Commission, the principal state agency investigating organized crime, and as a litigation partner at a Philadelphia law firm.
Dr. Marianne Boltz ’92 graduated magna cum laude from LVC with a B.S. in biology before heading to Philadelphia to pursue a doctor of optometry degree at the Pennsylvania College of Optometry. After completing her degree in 1996, she moved to Chicago for a residency in pediatric optometry at the Illinois College of Optometry.
She returned to central Pennsylvania in 1997 to enter private practice, later joining the faculty of the Penn State Hershey Eye Center in 2003, where she specializes in pediatric eye care and low-vision rehabilitation and is an assistant professor of ophthalmology.
Boltz is the recipient of the Pennsylvania Optometric Association Optometrist of the Year award and the Central PA Optometric Society Young Optometrist of the Year award, and serves on the board of directors of the Pennsylvania Optometric Association. Her research interests include amblyopia treatment and the effect of low vision rehabilitation on depression. Boltz is a national, state, and local lecturer on pediatric optometry and low vision rehabilitation.
Douglas L. Byers is senior vice president and cash management executive of Susquehanna Bank, where he is responsible for all commercial cash management business customers in the bank’s four-state market territory. He previously worked as cash management manager at Graystone Tower Bank, which Susquehanna acquired in February 2012. He has 12 years of experience in the banking and financial services industry.
Byers is a member of the Pennsylvania Bankers Association and a director/facilitator of its Advanced School of Banking; he also served a three-year term on the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Deposit Advisory Committee. Byers is also an active member and volunteer with his church, St. Paul’s UCC, in Manheim.
He graduated from Millersville University with a bachelor’s degree in finance/management, and completed his LVC MBA in 2012.
Lancaster Mayor J. Richard “Rick” Gray was elected to office in 2005 and assumed the office in January 2006. He was endorsed by the Lancaster Intelligencer Journal who applauded his vision and leadership for the city, and was re-elected in 2009 and 2013. Gray was recently elected as chair of the Local Government Advisory Committee in 2012 in Washington, D.C., and has served on the Committee for the past two years.
After attending American University and Dickinson Law School, Gray began his law career in 1969 as a VISTA attorney assigned to the Neighborhood Legal Services in Pittsburgh, PA. He came to Lancaster in 1972 where he was the Director of Legal Services until 1976. In 1976, he entered private practice and began a 30 career as a defense attorney.
Gray is a member of the Pennsylvania League of Cities and Municipalities board of directors and a former president of the Lancaster County Bar Association and the Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He is married to Gail Gray; they have three children and six grandchildren.
Gregory J. Hessinger Esq. ’87 earned a B.S. in political science at Lebanon Valley College. He is a partner with the law firm of Curley, Hessinger & Johnsrud LLP where he represents a variety of regional and national employers in collective bargaining, labor arbitrations, National Labor Relations Board proceedings, and employment-related litigation. Prior to returning to private practice in 2006, Hessinger served as national executive director and chief executive officer of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), after having served for five years as the national executive director of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA).
Hessinger is a 1990 graduate of the St. John’s University School of Law, where he was a member of the Law Review. He was a standout linebacker at LVC and remains the second-leading all-time tackler. A two-time team MVP, Hessinger is the only student-athlete to win the Chuck Maston, John Zola, and Scott Wallace awards. He was inducted into the Lebanon Valley College Athletic Hall of Fame in 2012. He and his wife, Paula, are the parents of Sierra, Derek, and Chloe.