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about ELDCPS > Board of Directors

Board of Directors

John Isaksen

Born and raised in Brooklyn, John's introduction to EL came in the early 1960s through riding the former Lackawanna MUs on the Morris and Essex line for visits to his grandmother's home in East Orange, N.J.

He has had a lifelong interest in historic preservation and education, with involvement in various Living History and local historical societies.

In the railroad environment, John served as Vice President of the NYS&W Technical & Historical Society (1989-1992); John also co-chaired the restoration of NYS&W RDC M-1 and participated in the planning, marketing and operation of numerous excursions and special events. Currently, he serves as Vice President of the New Jersey Midland Railroad Historical Society. He also is a volunteer with the Catskill Mountain Railroad, specializing in Maintenance of Equipment and Maintenance of Way.

John is an MIS professional for a Fortune 500 retail company. He and his wife, Suzanne, reside in Orange County, N.Y.

John Cannizzaro

John was born and raised in Lodi, N.J., and some of his earliest railroad experiences were hearing and watching Erie passenger and freight trains on the Bergen County Line during the 1950's. John's dad would also take him along for the ride on his trips into Manhattan via the DL&W and Erie ferries from Hoboken. John remembers bolting out of the truck as soon as his dad gave him the nod, and making a dash to the upper deck so as to get the catbird spot on the point of the bow.

As the youngest of three children, John was "dragged along" on shopping trips with his two older sisters. John's mom knew he was bored to death in the stores of Passaic N.J., so she would let him stand at the front doors to get relief watching Erie commuter and through trains stop a few feet away on Main Ave. Closer to home, John had the fun to watch (and occasionally ride) the NYS&W local drill on the Lodi branch.

To John, the late 50's & 60's were a blur of high school, college and riding and photographing as many Erie, DL&W, EL, and CNJ trains and fan trips as time and money would allow.

After a short stint as a CNJ brakeman in 1969-1970 and 37 years of teaching, John is happily retired and is enjoying a more active role in various railroad historical and preservation groups.

Paul Cappelloni

Paul Cappelloni was born in Scranton, PA, and raised during most of the Erie Lackawanna's existence. His interest in trains developed over time, starting with the typical Christmas tree set up and then full-fledged model railroading. He did not get involved in train watching until he graduated from high school, and started working with his father at an architectural and engineering firm as an electrical draftsman. Paul was part of a volunteer group that set up a large Lionel layout at the defunct Scranton Dry Goods department store in order to raise money for the Steamtown relocation effort. It was during this time that Paul developed a fondness for the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad.

Paul has been an active member of the Erie Lackawanna Historical Society since the late 1980s. Paul contributed by writing modeling articles on Lackawanna and Erie Lackawanna motive power. He then put together the Technical Advisor Newsletter and edited From the Call Box, a column designed to share answers to members' questions. After a short sabbatical, Paul organized the 2005 Annual Convention held in Stroudsburg, PA, and was elected to the ELHS Board of Directors. The following year Paul was elected President and Chairman of the Board of ELHS.

Paul became involved with ELDCPS after the 2011 ELHS convention excursion to E. Stroudsburg. The Maple Grove site is literally down the street from his childhood home, and he became a regular volunteer during the weekend sessions working on track, clearing brush, and restoring equipment. Paul had his first taste of operating experience as a car attendant during the December 2011 Santa excursions. In 2012, he started managing cleaning sessions of our Dieseliner cars in preparation for the Fall Excursion schedule.

Paul is a Sales Engineer for a large fortune 500 information technology company, and is still an active model railroader. He is currently building a layout based on the Lackawanna's Bangor and Portland Branch.

Neil Finch
Director / Membership Chairman

Derek Stapleton

Brian Schillinger

Nikki Moser

Additional Officers/Chairs

Paul R. Tupaczewski
Historian - Erie Lackawanna

Paul was born and raised in Boonton, N.J., and seeing EL locals and freights as a youngster colored his interest in railroads, and cemented the EL as his favorite road. He is active in many railroad organizations, and was Editor of NYS&W Technical & Historical Society newsletter Reflector from 1989 to 1991. Today he is the Erie/EL diesel locomotive advisor for the Erie Lackawanna Historical Society, and ran its 1999 Annual Convention. Paul also created and moderates the Erie Lackawanna Mailing List, an Internet-based discussion forum for Erie, DL&W, and EL topics. He is also modeling the EL Boonton Line, circa 1974, between Croxton Yard in Secaucus, N.J., and Port Morris, N.J. His latest project, an all-color book on the New York, Susquehanna & Western, was published by Morning Sun Books in early 2002. Served as Treasurer of ELDCPS 2001-2003, and President 2003-2007.

Pete Shepherd
Director Emeritus; Historian - Nickel Plate

Pete was born in 1947 in Fulton, N.Y., on the Lackawanna's Syracuse Branch. His bedroom was a long stone's throw from the branch, and he credits the DL&W with kindling a lifelong interest in railroads, fostered later by many nights spent with the crew of the local freight. This interest led to a career in transportation; he worked for the Missouri Pacific after graduating from St. John Fisher College, and retired in 2004 from Regional Transit Service (Rochester's public transit provider) after 31 years' service. He also served as a lieutenant (junior grade) in the U.S. Navy.

Pete was on the Board of Directors of the Nickel Plate Road Historical and Technical Society for 23 years, serving as Trustee (1986), National Director (1987-1995) and Publications Director (1996-2009). He has written an all-time NKP diesel roster book and over 90 articles on various aspects of Nickel Plate history, including their passenger service and equipment.

An ELHS member since 1978, Pete joined the ELDCPS in 2003 and has taken a life membership. He is also a charter member of the DL&W Railroad Historical Society. The EL and predecessors have always been among his favorite properties. He is also a member of numerous other railroad societies, reflecting a wide-ranging interest in the industry, past and present.

Pete lives in Fairport, N.Y., a suburb of Rochester, with his wife, Nancy, and cats Katy and Frisco, and thoroughly enjoys his association with the ELDCPS, which included his role as a Board member from 2008-2013.