‘Happy retirement, Don’ — after 35 years at Northwest

Photo submitted to Times Observer Don Reed celebrated over 35 years of employment on Wednesday, Dec. 21.

Don Reed wasn’t looking to work at Northwest Bank 35 years ago.

After graduating from Clarion University, the Ridgeway-native was shopping resumes around press metal plants in the St. Mary’s area. He received a call from the branch manager of Northwest there. Northwest was looking for someone with an accounting background. And since Reed’s degree was in accounting, it seemed a fit.

Reed can remember, when he started at the bank, there were seven Northwest Bank branches. There are now 176 in four states.

“I knew everyone on a first-name basis,” said Reed of when he started. “I’m very fortunate to have been able to work for a company that’s experienced such outstanding growth.”

With just a few working days left, said Reed, who’s officially leaving on Friday, Dec. 30, he and his wife Kate plan to do a lot of traveling. Always fans of globetrotting, Reed said that Naples, Florida, is first on their list, but they are also looking forward to visiting family in Sweden and many places throughout Europe.

A member a camera club in Warren, Reed said he’s going to be devoting a lot of time to what — up to now — has been mostly a hobby.

Photography, for Reed, didn’t start out as a hobby. He went into the Air Force with a focus on photography, journalism, and public relations.

He also plans to work more on another hobby of his — chip carving, which he’s taught at various places including the Allegheny Center for the Arts. Chip carving would seem to be a bit time-consuming, using knives and chisels to make art on a flat piece of wood.

More power to him.

Aside from his aforementioned retirement plans, Reed said he and Kate plan to enjoy all that that the Warren area is so accommodating to: “Hiking, biking, kayaking,” said Reed, “we love the outdoors.”

While many retirees feel called to move on from the area where they’ve built their career, with the natural amenities of the area, said both Don and Kate, there’s no reason to consider leaving.

“We love Warren,” said Reed.

Reed, who sits on several boards of directors locally, intends to devote more time to them as well. From the Boy Scouts to the Lions Club, Reed said he’d also like to get more involved with Warren’s annual Tango adventure race.

Anything to make his retirement an adventure.