New Board Members Elected to Allentown School District Foundation

New Board Members Elected to Allentown School District Foundation
Posted on 06/21/2022
The Allentown School District Foundation (ASDF) elected four people to fill three vacancies expanding its Board to twenty. Board members beginning a three-year term on July 1, 2022 are: Laudy Allan, Ibolya (Ibi) Balog, Dr. Mark Emerick, and Joseph Petro. The mission of the ASDF is to encourage, promote, support, and fund positive educational experiences for students in the Allentown School District (ASD). Sharing a commitment to serve and expand opportunities to ASD students, each has strong connections to the ASD.

"We are thrilled to welcome these new board members who have strong ties to the District and a proven commitment to enriching the experience of today's students," said Julie Ambrose, ASDF Executive Director. 
Ms. Allan graduated from Louis E. Dieruff High School in 1997. She serves as Vice-President of Global Logistics & Enterprise Improvement at Crayola where she has worked for over 14 years. She has a computer science degree from Penn State University. Along with her cousin Elias, Ms. Allan is involved with her cousin’s scholarship, the Thomas Makhoul Scholarship Fund, which is administered by the ASD Foundation. 

Ms. Ibi Balog has served the ASDF on the Finance Committee since 2017.  She is a seasoned accountant and business consultant; and she earned tenure as Associate Professor at Cedar Crest College in the Department of Business Management and Economics where she also served as Chair. Ms. Balog earned her undergraduate degree from Lehigh University and has an MBA from Temple University. She is also a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). Ibi has served on numerous nonprofit boards in the Lehigh Valley including the Allentown Symphony Association and the West Park Civic Association. In addition to joining the ASDF Board, Ms. Balog was elected Treasurer for the 2022-2023 fiscal year.

Dr. Mark Emerick is a first-generation college student who earned his BA from Kutztown University and began his career teaching ESL at William Allen High School. Mark earned his M.Ed. in curriculum and instruction and continued to work with English language learners in the ASD. A casualty of repeated teacher furloughs, Mark pursued his Ph.D. from Temple University studying systemic inequities that negatively affect English learners’ opportunity to attain college and career readiness. He provides professional development and equity training in the Lehigh Valley and Philadelphia areas; and is an assistant professor of education at Muhlenberg College. 

Mr. Joseph Petro is a 1962 Graduate of William Allen High School and a 1966 graduate of Temple University.  He believes that participating in high school athletics opened the doors for his career opportunities. Mr. Petro retired as Senior Vice President and Chief Security Officer for Time Warner Inc. in 2018. Prior to that he served as a Managing Director and Chief Security Officer at Citigroup in New York City. Joe was a veteran of the U.S. Navy who served in the River Patrol Forces in Vietnam. He was awarded a Bronze Star with Combat “V” and the Navy/Marine Corps Combat Action Ribbon. He then served as a special agent and senior executive with the United States Secret Service for 23 years where he supervised the Presidential, Vice Presidential and Dignitary Protective Divisions.

Board vacancies were created by the June 30, 2022 planned departure of three valued members: Ms. Allyn-Jane Marks, Mr. Joshua P. Dodd, and Mr. Michael Bruckner. Mrs. Marks served two complete terms on the ASDF Board from 2017-2022. Most recently she was Chair of the Teacher Innovation Grant (TIG) committee. She is a retired Allentown School District teacher and works for the Muhlenberg College Teacher Education program. Mr. Dodd and Mr. Bruckner both served on the ASDF Board from 2018-2022. A senior vice president at American Bank, Josh served as Treasurer all four years, and expertly guided the Foundation through financial engagements related to Covid grants, scholarship investments, and the donation of a classic car. Mike Bruckner brought expertise in public relations from his years of experience as vice president of external affairs and community relations at Muhlenberg College. He served as co-chair of the executive director search committee, represented the ASDF on the Harrison-Morton Middle School Transformation committee, and chaired the board’s public relations committee. "All three board members served with excellence and enhanced the Foundation. We thank them for their service," stated Ambrose.
About the Allentown School District Foundation

With a vision for enriched education for Allentown School District students, the ASD Foundation mission is to encourage, promote, support, and fund positive educational experiences for students in the Allentown School District. Since its founding in 2009, the Foundation has raised over $7.5 million for supplemental programming and services in ASD schools.

If you would like to learn more, please contact the Foundation’s executive director, Julie Ambrose, Ph.D., at 484-765-4093 or [email protected]. The mailing address is 31 South Penn Street, Allentown, PA 18102, and the website is