After more than 30 years of providing service locally, Ryan Township Supervisor Clyde "Champ" Holman could have decided to "downsize" his community involvement. Instead, the former chief of staff to the late Sen. Jim Rhoades has agreed to extend his support and expertise to every community within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, as a new deputy director for the state Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED).

Sworn in Friday by District Judge Stephen Bayer, Tamaqua, the Mahanoy City native was appointed to the state position in November by Gov. Tom Corbett. Surrounded by family and friends, Holman took the oath of office using a Bible held by his 2-year-old granddaughter, Ava Kowalchick.

At the time of his state appointment, Holman was serving as senior aide to State Sen. Dave Argall.

In addition to serving as an aide to Argall, Holman is also chairman of the Ryan Township Board of Supervisors, a post he enjoys and plans to keep as long as it doesn't conflict with his new duties. He resigned his membership with the Schuylkill Economic Development Corporation and the Schuylkill County Chamber of Commerce to avoid any possible conflict of interest with his new post.

Holman noted he was "proud and honored to be given this opportunity by Gov. Corbett and plans to provide quality service for all Pennsylvania residents."

The Department of Community and Economic Development has undergone a major revamping, but its mission remains to improve the quality of life for Pennsylvania citizens while assuring transparency and accountability in the expenditure of public funds. Programs focus on business assistance, community development and technical investment.