Former Dunmore Councilman Joe Tomko was honored recently for his many years of dedicated service to the Greater Scranton YMCA.
Tomko, 59, a 1978 Dunmore High School graduate, received the prestigious Red Triangle Award two months ago during a dinner ceremony at La Buona Vita, Dunmore. The award is one of the highest recognition awards given for volunteer service.
Tomko has been on the Board of Directors at the Greater Scranton YMCA for 16 years and running. He served two terms as president of the Board of Directors (2008-10 and 2017-19).
“I am very honored to receive this prestigious honor,” he said. “I am very grateful to the fellow Board, administration and members of the YMCA. I am certainly humbled.
“I initially got involved with the YMCA because of my two kids. They were involved in the day camp, summer programs, became members and eventually worked there as teenagers.
“I have a passion for the YMCA. It is a unique organization in that it serves infants to senior citizens. Each stage of life is represented at the YMCA. It is not just a place to work out. There is day care, pre school, after school programs, basketball leagues, learn to swim programs, senior programs and Silver Sneakers.
“Over the last four to five years the local YMCA helped make big improvements to the community. The membership has tripled in the last three years. It now has its highest membership with over 8,500 members. There is so much to do there for all ages.”
The personable lifelong Dunmore resident graduated from the University of Scranton in 1982 with a B.S. in Business Management.
He has 37 years of experience in banking and is currently Vice President of Commercial Lending at Fidelity Bank.
Son of the late Joseph, Sr. and Frances Tomko, both of his parents died in the past three years. “My parents were wonderful and big influences in my life and on the lives of my son and daughter. They were very good grandparents. I was very fortunate. My two kids had a lot of love and support.”
The lifelong Dunmore resident became a single dad after his divorce. But he gives a great deal of credit to his former wife, Mauri Kelly, recently sworn into her second term as Lackawanna County Clerk of Judicial Records. “She is a great mom and wonderful role model to my children.”
The couple had two children: Joe Tomko, Jr., 30, a Temple University and Widener Law School graduate who works in health care compliance for Maximus Federal; and Anne Marie Tomko, 29, who attended Bloomsburg University and Penn State and is Lackawanna County Recorder of Deeds.
Being a good parent is very important to Tomko.
“I enjoyed my time serving Dunmore as a Councilman, but I needed to give it up to spend more time with my kids. That was very important to me. I had to be there for them.
“My kids are my life. They are everything to me. I am so proud of them. I just want them to lead a happy and good life.”
Humble in nature and community minded, Tomko also serves on the Board of Directors for The Friendship House and the Dunmore Area Educational Foundation. He was a Dunmore Councilman from 1990 through 1997.
Next to his two children, there is no greater love for Tomko than the town of Dunmore.
“I love Dunmore, the community and its people. There is no greater place to grow up, to live and to raise a family. There is no greater place to me than Dunmore.”