Ben Franklin News

COVID-19: A message to our community

Dear Ben Franklin Community:

The Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania has been actively communicating with our economic development partners, the Commonwealth, and the federal government to solicit recommendations and provide input during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our goals are to help sustain clients now and to develop an economic recovery plan for our technology-based business community.

In response to the  pandemic, the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania has taken the following steps:

  • All staff are working remotely and are available by phone and email.
  • We will not be accepting applications for funding from new clients through the end of April.
  • The Ben Franklin iXchange, originally scheduled for May 12, has been rescheduled on Thursday, September 10, beginning at 5:00 PM. REGISTER NOW FOR iXchange.
  • We call on life sciences and other companies to donate supplies to fight COVID-19.

We value the partnerships that we have with our innovative clients and are proud to have made such a significant investment in the future of our region. Some of our clients are working on products that may help address this virus and the new challenges it has created. Many of them will play a crucial role in the economic recovery. We need to sustain the flow of capital to these companies to ensure that they have the resources they need to help all of us.

Our staff is working remotely, conducting meetings virtually, and are available to you by phone or email to help you access all of our resources and services. Please reach out to any of us.

Chad Paul, President and Chief Executive Officer –

Wayne Barz, Chief Investment Officer –

Connie Faylor, Regional Manager, Greater Reading/Berks and Schuylkill –

Bob Thomson, Regional Manager, Lehigh Valley –

Ken Okrepkie, Regional Manager, Pocono Northeast –

Fred Kluck, Regional Manager, Upper Susquehanna –

Anthony Durante, Manager, Entrepreneurial Support, Ben Franklin TechVentures –

Laura Eppler, Chief Markteing Officer — 

For information from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, please visit For information about support to employers and employees from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor, please visit For the most up-to-date information on health concerns related to COVID-19, please follow and

Please call on us for whatever help and support you need. We’ll do our best to help or direct you to other available resources.

The Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania team