Economy League Names John F. Smith and James K. Wujcik to Lead Board

March 26, 2009 - Philadelphia


The Economy League of Greater Philadelphia is pleased to announce new leadership of its Board of Directors for its milestone 100th year. John F. Smith, III, Esq. (below left), Partner with Reed Smith LLP, was elected to serve a one-year term as Chair in December 2008 following twelve months in the role of Vice Chair. He succeeded James R. Waddington, Jr., Director of Operations for Lockheed Martin. James K. Wujcik (below right), Market Executive with Sovereign Bank, was elected today to serve as Vice Chair for 2009. The Economy League's 64-member Board is comprised of leading national and regional corporations and health and educational institutions working together to improve Greater Philadelphia as a place to work and live.


"The Economy League is dedicated to making Greater Philadelphia a world class region and to playing a role in developing the regional attitude that it takes to get there," said Steven T. Wray, Economy League Executive Director. "Through in-depth research, collaboration with regional stakeholders, and creative problem-solving, we will continue to think about future challenges and collaborate with other organizations to identify practical solutions to ensure a great future for the region." 


John F. Smith is a senior litigator at Reed Smith and a member of the Financial Industry Group, practicing in the area of financial services litigation. He has had extensive experience in the fields of insurance, banking, health care, governmental relations, the licensing of intellectual property, constitutional interpretation, and employment and civil rights matters.


Smith's commitment to Greater Philadelphia is apparent both in word and in deed. In addition to his role on the Economy League Board of Directors, he is Chair of the Board of Trustees of International House Philadelphia. Also, Smith is a former director of the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia and a founder and past president of the Philadelphia Chamber Ensemble.


"The Economy League's willingness to take up difficult, multi-layered problems that hinder the region's competitiveness and to emerge with practical suggestions informed by top notch research and analysis is what drew me to the organization more than 20 years ago," said Smith. "Today's volatility and uncertainty is an opportunity for the Economy League and like-minded organizations. Together, we can recast how our region and its governments work in order to emerge stronger and more nimble from this crisis."


In addition to his leadership with the Economy League and Sovereign Bank, James K. Wujcik, pictured to the right, is in his third three-year elected term on the Chosen Board of Freeholders of Burlington County, NJ, for which he served as Director from 2005 to 2007. Also, he serves as Treasurer of "Love Thy Neighbor", a faith-based, community redevelopment effort in Trenton and is an active board member of Samaritan Hospice and the Small Business Advisory Board for the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce.  He lives in Cinnaminson.


"I am honored to have been selected as Vice Chair of the Economy League, particularly in this important year in its history and especially during this challenging economic time," said Jim Wujcik. "It will be my great pleasure to work with John Smith and the other leaders of our outstanding Board, particularly as the Economy League strengthens its presence in New Jersey and Delaware."


"During the past three years, we have sharpened our mission, increased partnerships and alliances, and added staff. As we move forward, Smith's and Wujcik's talents and energy will be invaluable in maintaining this momentum," said Wray.



Currently, the Economy League is working on several projects of regional significance:


  • Launching the Philadelphia Budget Challenge, an online city budget simulation,

  • Releasing the initial research of the World Class Greater Philadelphia initiative,

  • Programming the Greater Philadelphia Leadership Exchange 2009, and

  • Creating a public event for the Economy League's 100th Anniversary.



Recent Past Chairs of the Economy League of Greater Philadelphia


2008               James R. Waddington, Jr., Director of Operations, Lockheed Martin


2007               James P. Dunigan, EVP, PNC Bank


2005-06         Mary Stengel Austen, President and CEO, Tierney Communications


2003-04         Gregg Melinson, Esq., Partner, Drinker Biddle and Reath


2001-02         Eric Rabe, Vice President, Verizon


2000               Kenneth G. Lawrence, PECO Energy





About Economy League of Greater Philadelphia

The Economy League of Greater Philadelphia is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to research and analysis of the region's resources and challenges with the goal of promoting sound public policy and increasing the region's prosperity. ELGP is an affiliate of the Pennsylvania Economy League, Inc., with offices in Harrisburg, Wilkes-Barre, and Pittsburgh.