In one week, Who’s Who Publishing will unveil the inaugural edition of Who’s Who in Black Pittsburgh with a celebration at the Herberman Conference Center at UPMC Cancer Center Pavilion, in Shadyside, on July 16.
Candi Castleberry Singleton, UPMC chief diversity and inclusion officer, wrote the forward for the publication, and said she was honored to do so.
“I think it’s critically important for the Pittsburgh area. I’ve been to Who’s Who events, and worked with them in Chicago when I was at Motorola,” she said. “It’s a testament about the city. It shows that there are remarkably talented people of color here working in a variety of fields. “It’s important that people be reminded of that.”
The directory contains biographical entries on more than 200 prominent Pittsburgh African Americans working across a variety of fields including law, government, education, the arts and entertainment, science, nonprofits, sports and business.
KDKA-TV reporter Lynne Hayes-Freeland, who will serve as emcee for the publication release event, said she is excited about the directory.
“I am thrilled ‘Who’s Who in Black Pittsburgh’ has finally arrived in town. We have so much talent, intellect and potential here in our backyard, it is exciting to see a publication that will recognize so many,” she said. “Each year the New Pittsburgh Courier does an amazing job of recognizing Pittsburghers through its Men and Women of Excellence Awards, along with the Fab 40, now the city will have a publication that salutes so many who are doing so much.”
Since beginning in 1989 with a single publication, Who’s Who Publishing now produces annual directories of African American achievers in 25 cities, with Pittsburgh being the latest edition. Who’s Who has recently branched out to publish a Latino directory and a LGBT directory. It has also produced custom publications, such as “Driven,” about Black achievement in the auto industry, and “Vital Signs,” which celebrates African Americans in health-related fields.
Hiram Jackson, CEO of Real Times Media, said a directory celebrating the achievements of Black Pittsburghers to African American culture will be a gift to the rest of the country as well.
“I’m surprised it took us so long because Pittsburgh has made so many great contributions—whether in jazz, athletics, or politics,” he said. “If you look at Pittsburgh in terms of the quality of the Black professional market, it’s astounding.”
The July 16 event will begin at 6 p.m. at the conference center, 5150 Centre Avenue, with a networking reception featuring Hors d’oeuvres and entertainment by the James Johnson Trio.
The presentation program begins at 7 p.m. and will feature remarks by Jackson; Singleton; New Pittsburgh Courier Publisher and Who’s Who in Black Pittsburgh Associate Publisher Rod Doss; Urban Lending Solutions CEO Chuck Sanders, who wrote the introduction; state Rep. Jake Wheatley, D-Hill; Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald; and City of Pittsburgh Chief Urban Affairs Officer Valerie McDonald Roberts.
In addition to UPMC, event sponsors include PNC, the University of Pittsburgh, Urban Lending Solutions, Huntington Bank and Highmark Health.
Tickets are $50 and include a copy of the directory (valued at $39.95), and may be purchased in advance by calling 614-481-7300 ext. 2234.
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