New Director of Community and Government Relations
Posted: June 11, 2012
Gannon University President Keith
Taylor, Ph.D., has named Erika A. Ramalho as the University’s director of community
and government relations, effective July 1.
Ramalho will oversee the
University’s Erie-GAINS (Gannon Alliances to Improve Neighborhood
Sustainability) community development initiative, which has expanded and built
upon Gannon’s existing efforts to serve its campus neighbors. The program is
focused on the area bordered by Presque Isle Bay to
the north, Parade Street to the east, 11th Street to the south and
the Bayfront Parkway to the west.
Ramalho will implement an overall
vision for Erie-GAINS, to include establishing strategies to ensure that the
program’s goals and objectives are being realized. She will work closely with
governmental agencies and organizations as well as the primary Gannon
University departments, such as the Center for Social Concerns, Office of
Service-Learning and Center for Experiential Education, that help engage Gannon
students in community service and volunteer projects.
Ramalho most recently served as
director and site administrator for PA
CareerLink®, Erie County and was responsible for building and
maintaining relationships with clients, government officials and others. CareerLink®
is a resource for connecting employers and job seekers and provides
consultation services and online access to a comprehensive database of employment-related
Prior to joining CareerLink®,
Ramalho served as project manager/public liaison for the Erie County
Executive’s Office. She managed internal and community projects for the office
and established and maintained relationships with local government officials
and media correspondents.
Ramalho also previously worked as a
planner with the Erie County Department of Planning.
Ramalho is a graduate of Slippery
Rock University, earning a bachelor’s degree in public administration, and received
Slippery Rock’s award for the Outstanding Student in Public Administration. She
also has taken courses through the Pennsylvania Workforce Development Institute
at the Pennsylvania State University.
more information, visit www.gannon.edu/gains.
More about Erie-GAINS (Gannon Alliances to Improve
Gannon University in the summer of
2010 launched the program with a focus on five key issues, all centered on
- Education – Gannon has developed new relationships and strengthened existing
ties with a number of schools and nonprofit organizations in the City of Erie,
including a mentoring program with Strong Vincent High School, a tutoring and
mentoring program with the Martin Luther King Center, a legal studies program
with East High School and reading programs with St. Peter Cathedral Center and
- Health and wellness – Through Erie-GAINS, Gannon has implemented a range of
programs, including a Childhood Obesity Intervention program in collaboration
with UPMC Hamot, and a healthy eating and nutrition initiative developed with
Second Harvest Food Bank and St. Martin Center.
- Business and economy – The University’s Erie Technology Incubator (ETI) and
Small Business Development Center (SBDC) have continued to play a key role in
local and regional economic development and revitalization. In addition,
Gannon’s Center for Experiential Education helps the private sector and
nonprofit agencies and organizations find qualified interns and co-ops.
- Quality of life – Through Erie-GAINS, the University offers a number of
programs focused on civic engagement, poverty reduction and crime reduction. In
addition, hundreds of Gannon students annually volunteer for local agencies and
organizations through targeted community service initiatives.
- Environmental sustainability – Efforts include the GLISTEN project (Great Lakes
Innovative Stewardship Through Education Network), the Gannon Goes Green
Committee and the University’s participation in the Perry Square Alliance.
Goals related to environmental sustainability include increasing recycling and
the number of green buildings and creating more green space.