Nick BonessoAs President of the Avanti Consulting Group, Nick has significant experience in Management, Political and Government Affairs Consulting, as well as the management of marketing and communications of political, retail and non-profit campaigns.
Since founding the Avanti Consulting Group in 2004, Nick and his Team have successfully secured numerous grants through federal, state and local agencies. Nick has established a wide network of elected officials, their staffs and other government employees that have been integral in helping his clients meet their Development goals. Since 1990, Nick has been a paid political consultant on 54 campaigns. He has developed unique grassroots strategies, designed creative collateral pieces, produced bold media campaigns and managed many successful races.
Nick contributes strategic planning, copywriting, computer design, creative thinking and account management to a wide range of clients. His creative expertise and unique management qualifications are a valuable ingredient to the Team. For six years, Nick served as Communications Consultant for the Veterans Leadership Program. In that role, he wrote and designed a quarterly newsletter, prepared the annual report and coordinated an annual black-tie Gala. He left VLP to co-found the Keystone Veterans Assistance Foundation for which he serves as the Executive Director.
As a freelance writer, Nick has contributed numerous articles to many local and national publications, as well as editing his own website of political commentary. Nick received both his Master of Fine Arts and his Bachelor of Arts in English Writing from the University of Pittsburgh. Nick has taught creative writing courses at the Community College of Allegheny County Continuing Education Program since 2001.
Nick joined the Board of Directors of Pittsburgh Playback Theatre in August of 2001 and in June of 2002 was voted President of the Board, a seat he still holds. Nick has served other arts organizations as a volunteer through ProArts Business Volunteer Association, and is a past member of the Mattress Factory’s Factory 500 Committee. Nick is a founding member the Robinson Township Library Association, as well as a committee member for the annual Pittsburgh St. Anthony Fesitival.
As a person active in his community, Nick has served the past 13 years on the Board of Directors for the Municipal Authority for the Township of Robinson helping to oversee an annual operating budget of $10 million. He also has spent 12 years on the Robinson Township Democratic Committee as both an elected member and as the appointed treasurer.
Nick is a graduate of Leadership Pittsburgh XIX. He served on the Education Committee which developed a working survey to be used to generate awareness and funding for Early Childhood Education.
In his free time, Nick enjoys traveling, reading, golfing, watching films, collecting music and socializing. From 1999 through 2004, he was the host of his own two-hour radio show on Saturday afternoons on WPTS 92.1 FM.
Dana E. Jarvis
Dana E. Jarvis, MPA, MSW Principal, Avanti
Dana E. Jarvis has over 16 years of management and leadership experience with a history of demonstrated successful results. Dana is a former United States Marine where he motivated his team to earn the distinguished Navy Achievement Medal. After the U.S. Marine Corps, Dana completed his Master of Public Administration and Master of Social Work at the University of Pittsburgh. He has a Bachelor of Arts from Allegheny College and is a graduate of Leadership Pittsburgh, which connects civic leaders to civic issues.
Dana has worked in management consulting for years. He has led projects in strategic planning, market analysis, shared services, training and development and employee engagement. Throughout all of these projects, Dana's focus has been on increasing mission accomplishment and competitive advantage. He has worked with Fortune 500 corporations, nonprofit organizations and large public sector clients.
Dana has also worked internally for organizations as a Human Resources Director. He has developed performance management systems, corporate universities, leadership development programs, 360-degree assessments, employee engagement initiatives, internal marketing and communication and values integration. Dana is a skilled facilitator, having conducted sessions focused on strategic planning, quality and growth, teambuilding, leadership and innovation.
As a recognized leader in Human Resources, Dana has been a published writer for Dear Workforce and Workforce Management. In addition, his Values Integration Project was recognized by the Pittsburgh Human Resource Association's 2008 People Do Matter Awards. Dana is an Adjunct Professor at Duquesne University's John F. Donahue Graduate School of Business and School of Leadership and Professional Advancement. His courses have included Organization Ethics, Ethics and Diversity, Global Ethics, Program Design, Assessment and Improvement and Public Affairs Management. Dana has guest lectured at Carnegie Mellon University and Carlow University and has been a Field Placement Instructor for the School of Social Work at the University of Pittsburgh.
Dana has served in a leadership role on a number of nonprofit Board of Directors. He was the Personnel Chairperson on the Auberle Board of Directors. While on the PUMP (Pittsburgh Urban Magnet Project) Board, he was the Co-Chairperson for the Politics Committee. He has also served on the Board of Directors for Winter’s Haven, Inc. and the North Hills Youth Ministry Counseling Center along with being on the Advisory Board for the Veterans Leadership Program.
Ron Zola has extensive experience in government, the private sector and in the non-profit arena. With over 35 years experience in operations, financial and personnel management, he is uniquely qualified to assist clients in numerous areas.
Ron has successfully accessed numerous funding services ranging from government agencies at the local, county, state and federal level including the Department of Labor, HUD and the Department of Defense. Additionally, he has been successful - and is knowledgeable - in accessing funds from the corporate sector as well as a wide array of foundations serving a variety of needs.
Ron has a Bachelor’s Degree from Penn State University and a Master’s Degree from Loyola University of New Orleans. He served 24 years in the army and twelve years as the Executive Director of a non-profit agency providing social services. He has made presentations to and consulted with a variety of non-profit organizations nationwide, from Texas to Maine.
He sits on the National Board of Directors for the Military Officers Association of America, has a Presidential appointment to the Small Business Administration’s Veterans Advisory Board and provides consulting services to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans in Washington D.C. He is also a member of the Allegheny County FEMA Board and the Pennsylvania Advisory Committee for Military and Veterans Education.
Ron’s hobbies include collecting antique militaria, traveling, and restoring a 210 year-old family farm in a northern suburb of Pittsburgh.
Alfred “A.J.” Tedesco, Jr.
A.J. has over 10 years managerial experience in government and finance, as well as political and management consulting. A.J. contributes expertise in state, county and municipal government, budgets and finance. His attention to detail, diplomacy, professionalism, and integrity make him a valuable asset to the Avanti team.
As the Director of External Collections and Restitution for the Allegheny County Department of Court Records, A.J. headed the county's restitution distribution from criminal cases. He also headed the office's contact with external collection agencies used for older non-paying accounts, and was responsible for collecting and applying those accounts.
A.J. received his Associate of Science Degree in Liberal Arts from the Community College of Allegheny County, and his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science/History from the University of Pittsburgh. He is currently enrolled in the pursuit of a Master of Science in Legal Studies: Law & Public Policy at California University of Pennsylvania.
As the son of a retired police chief, A.J. learned the value of public service at a young age. At the age of 33, A.J. was elected to the Council for the City of Mckeesport, where he currently serves as head of the Finance Committee. He is also an elected member of the Pennsylvania State Democratic Committee.
A life-long animal lover, A.J. is an active volunteer with the Western Pennsylvania Humane Society, as well as the ASPCA Founders Society. He also raised funds for numerous causes, including the Mckeesport Historical Society.
A.J. lives in Mckeesport with his pug, Oden. He enjoys traveling, bowling and socializing with friends. He has an extensive collection of sports memorabilia, and is a dedicated booster to the Pittsburgh Panthers.