Five Eberly Alumni Inducted into Hall of Distinction

Posted on 4/30/2013 4:25:56 PM

Five Eberly College alumni achieved recognition at the Hall of Distinction Program and Induction at Eberly’s 35th annual Business Day on April 17, 2013.

The goal of the Hall of Distinction is to recognize the professional success and good citizenship of graduates of the college and others associated with its advancement. Currently, Eberly has 29 Hall of Distinction members.

“The Eberly College is extremely proud to have inducted five new members into its Eberly College Hall of Distinction,” Robert Camp, dean of the college, said. “We sincerely appreciate their commitment to professional excellence, their status as role models within the business community and to the broader society, and their long-term support of the university.”

R. Michael CarlsonR. Michael Carlson ’73

R. Michael Carlson, retired president of Wayne, a GE Energy business, has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from IUP and a master’s in business administration from St. Bonaventure University. He spent 32 years with Dresser Natural Gas Solutions in roles covering operations, product management, sales management, and, ultimately, president. He led acquisition efforts of companies that produced electronic flow correctors, pressure regulators, gas control valves, and a systems integration business. Wayne was voted “One of the Top Ten Places to Work” in Austin in 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2010.

James LedaJames Leda ’95

James Leda, managing director of the Debt Restructuring Group of PPM America, Inc., has bachelor’s degrees in accounting and finance from IUP and a master’s in business administration from the University of Chicago with a concentration in analytic finance. PPM America manages more than $100 billion as the North American investment division of Prudential plc. Leda joined PPM in 2009 from Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc., where he was vice president and senior high yield automotive analyst. He formulated the firm’s investment recommendations and preferred trading strategies in the high yield/distressed automotive sector. Leda represented his firm in a number of high-profile corporate restructurings, including Lehman Brothers, Washington Mutual, General Motors, and Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. Leda was also IUP Student Trustee during his undergraduate career.

Malisa SommersMalisa Sommers ’87

Malisa Sommers, managing director of transportation at the United States Steel Corporation and president of Transtar, Inc., a subsidiary of U.S. Steel, earned her bachelor’s degree in management from IUP and her master’s in business administration from Franciscan University. She worked for Wheeling-Nisshin, Inc., a steel-coating facility in West Virginia, for 13 years. In 2001, Sommers joined U.S. Steel at Straightline, the company’s former steel distribution subsidiary. After working in procurement, capital expenditure, and materials management, she was named general manager of global materials management and procurement operations with responsibility for parts and materials inventory management and procurement support activities at every U.S. Steel facility in North America and Central Europe. Her current position involves transportation and logistics. She oversees 700 employees in the operations of a long list of railroad and barge companies.

Tom WallaceTom Wallace ’80

Tom Wallace, chief executive officer of VectorLearning, Inc., earned his bachelor’s in finance from IUP. VectorLearning is a leading provider of online education and workforce training solutions. It is headquartered in Tampa, Fla., with offices in Chicago and Dallas with more than 165 employees. Sales are projected to exceed $30 million. Wallace has been a technology entrepreneur since age 23. He has successfully built and sold two start-ups. The first one had revenues of more than $20 million. Wallace’s second company, the Waldec Group, grew to more than 300 employees and $85 million in annual sales before being sold to a Fortune 500 company. He was cofounder and former president of Tampa Bay Technology Forum and believes life is all about the journey, not the destination.

Mauro WolfeMauro Wolfe ’90

Mauro Wolfe, a partner of Duane Morris, LLP, earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from IUP in 1990 and his juris doctorate degree from Temple University School of Law in 1996. Duane Morris is an international law firm with 24 offices worldwide. Wolfe practices in the area of litigation, with a focus on white-collar criminal defense; securities enforcement, including Foreign Corrupt Practices Act investigations; complex civil commercial and administrative litigation; and internal corporate investigations worldwide. In 2009, he was elected to the highly selective and prestigious New York Council of Defense Lawyers. Mauro has been sourced, quoted, and pictured in various news media, including the New York Times, National Law Journal, Bloomberg, Associated Press, Barron’s Philadelphia Daily News, Star-Ledger, etc. Wolfe also provides strategic advice to late-stage startups and middle-market companies looking to grow exponentially. He currently serves as a board member of LatinoJustice in New York.

Eberly College of Business and Information Technology