Mission, History, Values


The mission of Friends of the Poor is to bring together in friendship those who have the desire to give with those who are in need of assistance, in order to ease the burden of living in poverty and enhance the quality of life for all.


Friends of the Poor is a non-profit organization founded by Sister Adrian Barrett, IHM in 1986 and sponsored by the Congregation of the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Scranton, PA. Sister Adrian’s vision was to bring together in friendship those who have the desire to give with those in need of assistance, which she did as Executive Director until 2009. Sister Maryalice Jacquinot, IHM, served as director until July 2010, when she became Chief Executive Officer of St. Joseph’s Center in Scranton, PA. She served in that capacity from 2010 to July 2017. Sister Ann Walsh, IHM, was named the next Chief Executive Officer at that time and served in that capacity until July 2017. On July 10, 2017, we welcomed our first lay President and CEO, Meghan E. Loftus.


Friends of the Poor is committed to continuing the approach to service established by our founder, Sister Adrian Barrett, and perpetuating the values she embodied including:

    1. No Judgment – We welcome all in the spirit of friendship, without judging who people are or how they came to be in their situation. We walk alongside those constrained by limited resources and look to be of service, sharing what we have with an open heart and a generous hand.
    2. Connectedness – We are all part of the larger community of humankind. We connect those with resources to those in need. We work with other organizations and institutions to create a comprehensive system of support services and we bring the voices of the disenfranchised to those in power.
    3. Partnership – We work hand-in-hand with people, no matter their circumstances, to help them achieve the kind of life they want for themselves and their families. Our board and staff collaborate well with each other, and we actively seek out and cultivate partnerships with organizations and individuals who are also committed to making a real difference in our community.
    4. Integrity – Our board and staff are guided by the highest professional and ethical standards. We respect the environment and the impact of our operations on it. We model the inclusiveness, transparency and ethical behavior we seek to see in the world.
    5. Volunteerism – We believe that service to others is the highest form of giving, and we continually create opportunities for everyone to participate in our work.
    6. Wholeness – We take a holistic approach to service, identifying the full range of a person’s need then serving directly those we can and connecting those we can’t to other organizations that will.

2023 Board

Chair of the Board

Katie Richardson Engles, Esq.

Law Clerk – Lackawanna County Courts, Judge Moyle

Vice Chair of the Board

Lee Termini



Sister Mary Kathleen Faliskie, IHM

Employee Resource Specialist – St. Joseph’s Center


John McGovern, Jr., Esq., CPA

Attorney/CPA – McGovern Law

President and
Chief Executive Officer

Meghan Loftus*

2023 Directors

Edwin A. Abrahamsen, Jr., Esq.

Partner – ACA Law

Sister Susan Armbruster, IHM*

Councilor – Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary

Katie Abrahamsen Borer, M.S., RD, LDN

Clinical Dietician – Allied Services

Adjunct Professor – University of Scranton

Sister Elizabeth DeMerchant, IHM

Teacher – All Saints Academy

Jacob Gilboy, Esq.

Attorney – Marshall, Dennehey, Warner, Coleman & Goggin

Sean McAndrew

Partner – I&M Wealth Advisors

John McGovern, Jr., Esq., CPA

Attorney/CPA – McGovern Law

Peter Moylan

Senior Donor Relations Manager – The Central Association of the Miraculous Medal

Mary Lynn O’Bell, Au.D.

Doctor of Audiology – Enhanced Hearing Specialists, LLC

Todd Pousley

Neighborhood Revitalization Manager – NeighborWorks NEPA

*Ex Officio Board Members


Meghan Loftus

President & CEO

Kenya Snyder

Operations Director

Antonio Berardi

Food Programs Manager

Ann Montoro-Williams

Stewardship Manager

Ingrid Husisian

Pantry Supervisor

John Swarts

Warehouse Supervisor

Jessica Black

Finance Manager

Yanailiz Diaz-Roman

Program Coordinator

Layla Crane

Children’s Program Manager

Cal Bieryla

Food Program Coordinator

Ashley Ceccacci

Development Coordinator

Margi Tallarico

Senior Executive Assistant

Samantha Piasecki

Pantry Coordinator

Federick Antongiorgi

Pantry Aide

Sister Ann Walsh, IHM, LSW

Friends of the Poor Volunteer

Sister Jean Coughlin, IHM

Friends of the Poor Volunteer

Sister Betty Bullen, IHM

Friends of the Poor Volunteer

Tyler Pawlikowski

Finance Coordinator

Sister Terry O’Rourke, IHM, LSW

Projects Coordinator