Thursday, February 9th, 2023

8 am to 9:30 am

At the S. Dale High Leadership Center


What is the Changemakers Conference?

Uniting our Business Community for Good

Lancaster is known for its generosity and community members who are driven to do good. At the Changemakers Conference you’ll have the opportunity to connect and brainstorm with other like-minded business men and women around how to best use your skills and resources to better the community. 

Learn the Latest Ways to Get Involved

Hear from speakers and panelists who have had personal experience using their businesses in creative and effective ways to help the community. They’ll share what you can do, right here in Lancaster, to boost your bottom line while making a strong positive impact on others. 

Make Your Business Stand Out

Working with non-profits or upping your corporate responsibility has been shown to improve or maintain a positive work culture. Not only does it help the community overall, it can make your business stand out among employees and clients, and give you deeper community engagement and recognition.

This Year's Topic

Thinking Outside the Office

How Businesses and Non-profits can team up.

This year’s conference will focus on how businesses and nonprofits can work together, both to meet their own goals, AND make a bigger difference right here in Lancaster.

Our five business panelists will share from their experience collaborating with local organizations and show you ways to get involved with a nonprofit that shares your unique vision. They’ll explore how this is good for business and just a no-brainer for improving our community.

You’ll also get the chance to meet with 6 local non-profits along with their business partners during our networking time. They can help answer practical questions and point you in the right direction of starting your own impactful partnerships.

You can learn more about our experienced panelists and our exceptional moderator below. 

Why Should Businesses Attend?

Local panelists will give you actionable information that you can take straight to the office, and put into practice this year. 

It’s a great way to learn the latest in how other businesses are getting involved, and plan your next steps in working with a non-profit yourself. 

Why Should Non-Profits Attend?

Partnering with local businesses is really a win-win that helps create awareness for the work you do, and opens the door to further important collaboration. 

Here, you’ll get to see unique ways businesses have collaborated with other non-profits in the area, and learn what you’re missing out on when it comes to working with local businesses.

“We shall have better business when everyone realizes that while it pays to invest money in their industries and develop natural resources, it pays still higher dividends to improve mankind and develop human resources.” 

H.E. Steiner

The Schedule For The Morning

8:00 AM -8:45 AM – Meet Local Nonprofits 

(Coffee and Pastries Served)

8:45 AM – 9:30 AM – Panel Discussion with Q&A

9:30 AM – 10:00 AM – Free Time/Opportunities To Network

This Year's Panelists and Presentors:

Dan Burkholder - Heller Capital

Dan Burkholder is the President and CEO of Heller Capital, a boutique private equity firm based in Lancaster, PA. Dan works with clients, seeking to model their Proclamation: “To positively impact the life of every single person we meet by creating and cultivating cultures of PEACE.” Dan and his wife, Abby, live in Lancaster with their two children and are actively involved in a variety of “for purpose / non-profit” organizations.

Deb Brandt -
Fig Industries

Deborah Brandt, owner of Fig Industries, has a passion for creative communication and an unwavering determination to help small businesses, which she considers the heartbeat of the community. A certified B Corporation, Fig Industries is a design and marketing studio specializing in branding and communications. Deborah began her career as a designer in New York City and moved back to Lancaster to use her expertise and talents to make positive change in her hometown.

Nelson Longenecker -
Four Seasons Produce

Nelson Longenecker is the VP of Business Innovation at Four Seasons Produce. He is an experienced operational and technology executive capable of championing and implementing improvements and innovation. His experience is in strategy engagement, developing director-level leaders and professional teams, creating business profitability models, and designing sustainability efforts. Nelson has always believed in not only running a business efficiently but, most importantly, doing good for others in order to make a difference.

Ezra Rothman - Economic Development Company of Lancaster County

Ezra Rothman is the Director of Strategic Initiatives and Partnership at the Economic Development Company of Lancaster County. He spends much of his time at EDC helping local businesses, often fostering connections with partner organizations and public entities. Ezra lives in Lancaster City with his wife, Rose, and dog, Howie.

Chris Ballentine - Willow Valley Communities

Chris Ballentine is a community advocate and connector who’s dedicated to effectively communicating the benefits of Southern Market, its revitalization, and the development of Mosaic, a 55+ senior urban living expansion.  He shares the vision to transform underutilized priority areas into bustling community hubs while creating a dynamic gateway into southern Lancaster City. A Lancaster native, Ballentine is the proud father of two, and a Bloomsburg University graduate.

Diane Poillon - Willow Valley Associates

Diane L. Poillon is currently serving as President and CEO of Willow Valley Associates. She has over 30 years of experience in the hospitality and real estate business at Willow Valley. Diane is an active leader in the community including positions on the Boards of Water Street Mission, Messiah College President’s Leadership Council and LINKBANK. She’s a graduate of Messiah College, wife of Richard D. Poillon and mother of three.


Sandy Gambone_V1


Contact Sandy Gambone, Business Ambassador of Water Street Mission at 


Thanks to our 2023 Steering Committee:

  • Activ8
  • Calvary Church
  • First Presbyterian Church of Strasburg
  • Mission Church
  • Worship Center



Contact Maria Schaszberger at