Pennsylvania College of Technology on Saturday presented Alumni Citizenship/Humanitarian Awards to Diane L. Dorner and Lester J. Loner, both of Williamsport.
The Alumni Citizenship/Humanitarian Award recognizes graduates of Penn College (and forerunners Williamsport Area Community College and the Williamsport Technical Institute) who provide distinguished community or volunteer service.
The awards were presented during December Commencement ceremonies at the Community Arts Center in Williamsport.
Dorner graduated from W.A.C.C. in 1979 with an associate degree in food and hospitality management. She is employed as director of operations for AML Development Corp., Williamsport.
Loner graduated from W.A.C.C. in 1974 with an associate degree in business administration and later from Bloomsburg University, where he received a degree in business administration/accounting. He is office manager for the Williamsport Municipal Water Authority.
Dorner has been director of operations since 1995 for AML Development Corp., where she is responsible for daily operations, sales and profits for 11 Burger King restaurants. She has worked for the company since 1979, serving previously as district supervisor, restaurant general manager and restaurant assistant manager.
In her capacity as director of operations, Dorner has been instrumental in implementing a variety of AML Development Corp. programs that provide assistance to those in need.
For more than 20 years, AML has worked with the Multiple Sclerosis Society, raising more than $100,000 by selling booklets with free-food coupons. The company also donates various items for the annual walks the society holds each year.
For 25 years, the company has held an annual drive to collect used eyeglasses for North Central Sight Services Inc. (Anyone bringing in a pair of eyeglasses receives a hamburger coupon.)
Each year, the company works with the local Young Men’s Republican Club to feed 125 children and provide them with a new outfit of clothes during the holiday season.
Dorner also has been instrumental in starting two scholarships awarded to Penn College School of Hospitality students. An endowment fund continues to award the Burger King scholarships annually.
For more than 20 years, the company has sold coupon booklets with proceeds benefiting the Children’s Miracle Network at Geisinger. This effort has raised in excess of $150,000. Dorner also has helped answer phones during the network’s telethon.
Dorner organizes her company’s participation in the Burger King Scholars Program, which has awarded more than 35 annual scholarships (ranging from $1,000 to $5,000) in the past five years to area high school students and current employees of AML Development Corp.
She has organized the company’s participation in the American Red Cross Susquehanna 500 “Mini-Indy” race since its inception. She also organized a program for employees to quit smoking with the Clinical Outcomes Group.
Dorner serves on the School of Hospitality Advisory Committee at Penn College.
Loner has worked for the Williamsport Municipal Water Authority since 1976. Before serving as office manager, his positions included assistant office manager, assistant accounting clerk and clerk.
He has volunteered his time for a variety of organizations in the community, including Special Olympics, Little League Baseball, United Commercial Travelers, the Williamsport YMCA and the Williamsport Lions.
Loner has been particularly committed to Special Olympics for the past 22 years. On the local (Lycoming County management team) level, he has served as training coordinator, county manager, competition coordinator and assistant fundraising coordinator.
At the state level, Loner has been a family coordinator, sports advisory team member, Global Messenger team member, winter sports team adviser and sports trainer. He has also been a training clinician at eight training schools and five state leadership conferences
Loner has served as a spokesman for Special Olympics volunteers and athletes in a variety of situations. He derives the most pleasure from working with Special Olympics athletes, having served as assistant coach, coach, volunteer and head of delegation. He is certified as a coach for 13 Special Olympics sports, serves as a Global Messenger coach and is a mentor for the county’s athlete committee.
He and his family (who are also Special Olympics volunteers) were presented with the “Family of the Year for Pennsylvania” honor. He has also been named Manager of the Year and Coach of the Year (twice). He was named the 2007 Special Olympics North America Coach of the Year.
In 1999, Loner served as head athletics coach for the World Summer Games. In 2001 and 2005, he served as assistant cross country ski coach for the World Winter Games held in Alaska and Japan. In 2006, he served as assistant athletics coach for the first United States National Games in Ames, Iowa. In 2007, Loner was head coach for the Pennsylvania Athletics team and assistant athletics coach for Team USA in the World Summer Games held in Shanghai, China.
For Little League Baseball, Loner has served as a volunteer, coach, manager, umpire and board member. He has also served as a board member and coach for the Little League Challenger Division.
For United Commercial Travelers, the Williamsport YMCA and the Williamsport Lions, Loner has served on a variety of committees and helped with fundraising efforts. He is the recipient of the Williamsport Rotary Club’s Paul Jones Award, the Non-Rotarian Community Service Award and Dinner of Champions Community Service Award.
Penn College also presents Distinguished Alumnus/Alumna Awards, Alumnus/Alumna Achievement Awards and Mentorship Awards.