Noah, Thelen to Speak at September 11 Memorial Program

Posted on 9/4/2019 3:56:35 PM

September 11 Ceremony CrowdChief Marketing Officer Chris Noah, who was present in New York City at the time of the September 11, 2001 attacks, and IUP’s director of Public Safety and Police Kevin Thelen will join IUP President Michael Driscoll as speakers for the university’s annual September 11 remembrance event. 

Laurie Frisina Kuzneski, of Indiana, a 1993 IUP graduate and member of the IUP Council of Trustees, will serve as master of ceremonies.

The program, free and open to the community, will begin at 8:30 a.m. on September 11. It will be held at the university’s September 11 memorial in the Oak Grove located between Sutton Hall and Stapleton Library. The memorial includes a 13-foot remnant of the World Trade Center, on long-term loan to the university from the Kovalchick family, of Indiana.

The annual event is designed as an opportunity to reflect on and mark the anniversary of the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States. The program includes a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m., the time the first plane hit the World Trade Center. Music will be performed by the IUP Wind Ensemble under the direction of Timothy Paul, director of bands.

The event also will include a remembrance of the three IUP alumni lost in the World Trade Center attacks: William Moskal, a 1979 graduate; Donald Jones, a 1980 graduate; and William Sugra, a 1993 graduate.

Noah, IUP’s chief marketing officer, was in New York City on September 11, 2001, working for a company now known as Euro. He was 15 blocks away from the World Trade Center when the attacks happened. His New Jersey hometown of Middletown lost 37 people in the attack, including his friends and neighbors.

Thelen will reflect on the lessons learned from September 11, the power of collaboration, and how best to honor first responders. Prior to his work at IUP, he served as deputy chief of police for University of Colorado and as an officer with the Aurora, Colorado Police Department. Prior to his work at the University of Colorado, he was an International Police Liaison Office in Iraq under contract with the United States Department of State.

Jones and Sugra worked for Cantor Fitzgerald in the north tower of the World Trade Center. Jones was a bond broker from Bucks County. Sugra lived in Manhattan and worked for e-Speed, Cantor Fitzgerald’s electronic trading unit. Sugra’s family, of Allentown, established a memorial scholarship in his honor for an IUP student from Allentown majoring in finance.

Moskal, a safety sciences graduate and Johnstown native, was a risk consultant for Marsh and McLennan in Cleveland, specializing in heavy construction. He was in New York on September 11, 2001, for a meeting at the World Trade Center.

Members of IUP’s ROTC Color Guard will present and retire the colors. Color Guard members selected to participate in the ceremony are Juan Gonzalez, an accounting and management information systems major from Kennett Square; Christian Holland, a history major from Hummelstown; Eric Kinderman, a supply chain management major from Mt. Lebanon; Lucas Kovach, an energy geotechnology major from Lehighton; and Sean Stirling, an environmental planning and engineering major from Kittanning.

IUP has about 170 students in all majors in the ROTC program. Color Guard members are chosen based on outstanding Drill and Ceremony skill levels, grade point average, and Army Physical Fitness Test scores. 

Members of the IUP Council on Spiritual and Religious Life will be available in the Oak Grove during and after the memorial for support.

In the event of inclement weather, the ceremony will be held in Gorell Recital Hall, located on the second floor of IUP’s Sutton Hall.

During September, the IUP Libraries offers a special display in the first floor lobby area about the attacks. IUP students, under the direction of Distinguished University Professor Jeff Larkin and Mike Tyree, faculty in the Department of Biology, have been involved in the reforestation project around the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville. The memorial is the site of the crash of United Airlines Flight 93, which was hijacked in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States.