Michael Leco was born over three-quarters of a century ago in the smoky steel-mill town of Clairton along the Monongahela River of Southwestern Pennsylvania. His father was a first-generation immigrant from Slovakia and his mother was second generation. In the middle of the second World War, his family moved back to the land, so he and his brother, Larry (known by all as Shorty) were raised on a farm in the rolling hills of western Pennsylvania.
Mike attended Carnegie Institute of Technology, (now known as Carnegie Mellon) but paused for a five-year sojourn with the US Air Force. He spent four of those years in West Germany, where he met and married his wife, Anne, a native of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. After his return to Pennsylvania, he completed a Bachelor of Science degree in economics at the University of Pittsburgh. He and Anny raised a family of two boys, Jeff and Gerry and a daughter, Michelle.
He worked for five years in engineering research followed by fifteen years in management. In 1984, he founded, along with several partners, the healthcare financial consulting firm of M. Leco & Associates Inc. Over the next thirty years, the enterprise grew to over 100 employees and over seven million dollars in annual revenue. It provided services to hospitals in 46 states. In 2014, he sold the business and retired.
Mike also created the web publishing company of USATourist.com with his daughter, Michelle. It became the leading publisher of travel information about the USA with over half a million monthly readers. Michelle still maintains that business.
He has been a member of Mensa for nearly fifty years and previously chaired the local chapter for over a decade. Mike and Anny have traveled extensively throughout the USA and Europe. He enjoys reading, photography, woodworking and spending time with his grandchildren.
Anne Marie Bernard was born in a Nazi run maternity home in the Westwald district of Germany near the end of World War II. Her mother was a refugee from the combat, her biological father had disappeared somewhere in Belgium, two cousins had been arrested for resistance,and her grandfather was in a concentration camp charged with supporting the Luxembourg resistance.
She and her mother were taken in and sheltered by a kind and generous German family in a small farming village near Koblenz. Anny spent the first six months of her life there. At the end of the war, mother and daughter returned to Luxembourg and discovered that the cousins had been executed by the Nazis, but her grandfather had survived the camps.
A few years later, her mother married Emile Uhrig, who adopted Anny. They had two additional children, Anny's brothers, Albert and George. Anny completed her schooling in Luxembourg where she became fluent in Luxembourgish, German and French also conversant in English. She studied retail merchandising and completed an internship at the city's largest department store. At the age of seventeen, she accepted a position as live-in maid at the British Embassy in Luxembourg City.
In 1964, she met Mike at a milk bar near the embassy. A year later, they married. Two years later, they moved to the USA. Anny became a US citizen, raised a family of three children, taught herself dog grooming and founded a successful in-home business. She managed a retail boutique in Pittsburgh and eventually spent over twenty years as the human resources director for M. Leco & Associates.
Anny likes to travel, to read and especially to spend time with her grandchildren.