New Members Join United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley’s Board of Directors


Jim Irwin, Laurie Hackett and Joe Topper appointed to UWGLV Board


Allentown, PA January 7, 2019 – United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley’s Board of Directors is proud to announce the appointments of Laurie Hackett, Jim Irwin and Joe Topper to two-year terms, effective immediately.

“The new members will volunteer their leadership and expertise to help United Way create opportunities to improve lives and community conditions throughout Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties. Laurie, Jim and Joe each embody the LIVE UNITED spirit, and we look forward to their support as we advance our work throughout the Greater Lehigh Valley,” said Board Chair Dr. Joseph Roy, Superintendent of Bethlehem Area School District.

United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley raises money and invests in programs to achieve three bold goals: increase the number of third-graders reading on grade level, decrease the number of food insecure residents and increase the number of seniors whose basic needs are met at home.

“Over the past four years, we’ve made significant, measurable progress toward each of these goals. Volunteer leaders are a key factor in our success in fundraising and impact, and we’re excited about the energy Laurie, Jim and Joe will bring to our Board,” remarked David Lewis, President, UWGLV.

Laurie Hackett is director of Community Relations and Philanthropy at Air Products, where she oversees the Air Products Foundation and manages community relations activities for the company. Her global responsibilities include employee engagement, corporate citizenship, philanthropic giving and leveraging relationships externally and internally. Prior to coming to Air Products in 2005, she was at Lehigh University where she developed the PA Governor’s School for Global Entrepreneurship and served as the founding director. She taught at Lehigh as an adjunct faculty member in business communications. Other earlier work experiences include Professional Development manager at the Iacocca Institute at Lehigh, Assistant to the President at Lehigh University, Director of the Diamond Center for Entrepreneurship at Lehigh and Program Director for City of Bethlehem’s 250th Anniversary. She also worked in Student Affairs at Lehigh University, Cleveland State University and St. Mary’s University of Maryland. She undertook doctoral coursework at Lehigh University, completed a Master of Science in Higher Education Administration from Miami University of Ohio, and a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from State University of New York at Oswego.

Her current activities include Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce Executive Committee and Board of Governors, R.K. Laros Foundation Trustee, Miller-Keystone Blood Center Board, St. Luke’s Sacred Heart Board, Chamber NonProfit Business Partners Council Chair, IronPigs Charities Board, and Phantoms Charities Board. She is a recipient of the Chamber Volunteer of the Year, Girl Scouts Take the Lead Award, Bethlehem Chamber Spirit of Bethlehem Award and Chamber of Commerce Athena Award.

Jim Irwin serves as President of the Lehigh Valley Labor Council. From 1999 to 2013, Irwin worked at Gracedale Nursing home in Northampton County and joined AFSCME Local 1435. He attended Lincoln Technical Institute where he earned an Associate’s Degree in electronic engineering in 2010. Irwin rose to the rank of Vice President and eventually President of Local 1435 and worked with the Coalition of Alzheimer’s Families and the Lehigh Valley Labor Council to keep Gracedale owned by Northampton County. In 2013, he was hired as a Staff Representative for AFSCME District Council 88. In 2018, he became Vice President of AFSCME Council 13’s Staff Union, PICSU. He has completed the AFSCME Council 13 Leadership Program, is a former Local Union Training Instructor (LUTI) and was accepted into the Council 13 Mentoring Program in 2017. Prior to becoming Labor Council President, Irwin served as the COPE chair for the Council and has been a delegate to the Council since 2011. Irwin has also served as a board member on the United Way TeenWorks Board since 2011 and as the chair of the Gracedale advisory board for two and a half terms.

Joe Topper, CEO of Dunne Manning, currently runs the Topper Family office. Prior to selling Lehigh Gas Partners GP to CST Brands, he was the CEO and Chairman of the Board of Lehigh Gas Partners, a company taken public in October 2012. Topper serves as a member of the Board of Directors of CrossAmerica GP LLC, Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Villanova University and a director of Lehigh Valley PBS. He previously served as President of the Board of Directors for PBS39 WLVT and PBS39 Foundation and as a director for the Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Hospital. Topper holds a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Villanova and a Master of Business Administration from Lehigh University.

Mission of United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley
The mission of United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley is to provide the leadership, convene the partnerships, and develop the resources and solutions that improve our community.  We remain committed to these goals and sincerely appreciate the continued support of partners, program providers and donors throughout the Lehigh Valley.


Information provided to TVL by:
Zandra Whalen
Director, Marketing and Design
United Way of the Greater Lehigh Valley
Celebrating 100 years of service to the Lehigh Valley.
1110 American Parkway NE  Suite F-120  Allentown, PA 18109