Search for Belmont DJFS director continues

ST. CLAIRSVILLE Belmont County is looking at candidates for the directorship of the Department of Job and Family Services, and commissioners say services should continue smoothly while a selection is made.

Commissioner Ginny Favede said the interview process is underway but ,as of now, the commissioners cannot give a definite date for the announcement of a new director.

“My commitment is to hiring the best and most qualified individual to oversee that department, and however long that takes is more important than having a finite period of time to be conducted in,” she said.

Since former DJFS Director Dwayne Pielech resigned from the position as of July 12, Fiscal Officer Vince Gianangeli was given authority to sign certain financial documents. The commissioners and Favede, as president of the board, will sign off on any additional documentation.

She added that operations have proceeded smoothly since Pielech stepped down.

“The management of Job and Family Services has continued to keep the activities and the responsibilities of Job and Family Services as sufficiently as ever. We communicate with them on a daily basis. Everything that needs to be taken care of,” she said. “We’ve have no stumbling blocks whatever.”

Pielech announced his resignation this spring after 14 years at the helm of the agency. In recent years, DJFS has undergone changes and renovations including the incorporation and expansion of senior services. Senior services is in the process of being designated a separate department under the commissioners.

During meetings of the commissioners, guests have regularly pressed for updates on DJFS operations and the planned changeover of senior services. The commissioners themselves have also disagreed on the necessity for separating senior services, with Commissioner Matt Coffland dissenting and Commissioners Favede and Charles R. Probst, Jr. in favor.

A successor to Pielech had been recently selected after a series of interviews, but decided to step down days later, citing personal issues.

The commissioners have held interviews for the new senior services director and are in the process of deciding among the applicants.

Responsibilities of the Department of Job and Family Services include helping family requiring financial assistance, those families going through domestic troubles, and children in need of the resources the department can provide.

DeFrank can be reached at