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Powering the Lehigh Valley's Economic Resnaissance

Albarell Electric – Bethlehem, PA 

The Key to Thriving Communities: Vision 


Curt Hoyak & Mike Conkey - Albarell Electric, Inc. 



Since the 1930s, Albarell Electric has been helping to keep the lights on in the Lehigh Valley. But the longevity of the business only tells part of the story. 


“It started out with one man who could fix your toaster or your lamp, or repair an outlet in your house, and now it’s evolved into one of the largest electrical contractors in the Greater Lehigh Valley,” says owner and Executive Vice President Curt Hoyak. 

While the company is entering its 87th year, it’s only in the last 20 years that Curt, and partner Mike Conkey, joined the business to help map out a strategy for the future of Albarell Electric. Eventually, that led to a management buy-out but, as the two new owners pointed out, purchasing a multi-million-dollar business requires a source of capital and a good team of financial advisors. 


Enter Steve Kalamar, Penn Community Bank C&I Lending Relationship Manager, who had worked with Albarell in the past and in 2021, helped complete the transition of the business to Curt and Mike. 


“What we saw in Penn Community Bank was a partner, a relationship-oriented bank. Nowadays that can be hard to find, especially among larger institutions”, says Curt. “When you’re financing an acquisition, there’s always an element of financial leverage and risk involved, but Steve and Lewis (Cyr, Penn Community Bank Chief Lending Officer) structured a very competitive loan package that met our request, made it affordable and positioned us for growth. In the end, the bank made us feel very comfortable and met all our needs from both a lending and cash management perspective with pricing that was better that most.” 

A Partner for Growth 

“Mike Albarell, son of the founder, did a terrific job in growing the business and really set it up for success. We just took control of an already moving train and only needed to make a few subtle changes here and there to continue that forward momentum,” says Mike. 

Over the last few years, the company ventured into a new generator division and, within a short period of time, established itself as a key player in the market for generator sales, maintenance, service, and repair. 


“While generators produce electricity, they are mechanical - so it’s more like fixing and servicing a car. It requires an employee with a different skill set than that of an electrician,” said Curt. “Conversely our Motor Shop, which is one of oldest divisions, sells, repairs, and rewinds electrical motors. Here again that individual has a different set of skills.” 

Both divisions are key contributors to the company’s success but both Mike and Curt agree that their electrical construction division is the one division that has had the most growth and success over the past 87 years. 


Having three divisions operating out of three geographical locations enables the company to uniquely promote itself as the region’s only single source solution for your electrical needs. And as they continue to look for new opportunities, they know they can count on their team at Penn Community Bank. 


“Steve has always been a good listener and contributor in understanding our needs,” says Curt. “So, when we make that call to Steve, he’s already on board with what we’re planning as our next move.” 

Commitment to Community 

While ownership of the business may have changed, one thing that hasn’t is the organization’s commitment to its customers and the Lehigh Valley community. 


“It’s a special feeling when our 150 employees can drive around and say, ‘I helped build that. I worked there. I know those people.’ There’s a tremendous sense of pride when one sees what we’ve accomplished as a company over the years. It keeps us connected to the community,’” says Mike.

This connection can also be seen through Albarell Electric’s philanthropic giving throughout the region. 


“We try very hard to give back to those customers who have supported us over the years whether that be the local hospitals, schools, colleges, churches, or other nonprofits throughout the markets we serve,” says Curt. 

Each year, the company budgets tens of thousands of dollars to support charitable initiatives that empower the community and help deepen those relationships. 


“When we send those checks out at the end of each year our cover letter always starts out by saying, “On behalf of the employees of Albarell Electric…. because it’s our employees who really deserve the credit for our ability to give back,” says Mike. 

“When you think about how important Bethlehem Steel was to this community a hundred years ago and today it only exists as a memory that is memorialized by landmarks of its past, you soon realize that the Lehigh Valley today exists in large part due to its community of leaders that had a different vision, one of diversification and an opportunity to expand and broaden its base of business and industry,” says Curt. 

“We continue to see great opportunity in the Lehigh Valley today, and we know Penn Community Bank does as well. They too see the value of this thriving community.” 


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