Elsie Hillman Civic Forum

Never a Spectator Campus Event

MARCH 16, 2017
Alumni Hall Connolly Ballroom
4:30 pm – 8:00 pm 

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Inspiring the next generation of leaders

The Never a Spectator campus event is a unique opportunity for Pitt students to network with some of the region’s most prominent leaders. Students will join regional visionaries for an intimate evening and dinner reception devoted to sharing a vision for public service, inspiring action, and developing the pipeline of leadership needed to foster sustainable growth and regional transformation as Pittsburgh continues to evolve as on one of America’s premier cities. 

We are pleased to welcome 18 respected leaders, each of whom founded an organization that helped shape our city.  Attendees will have the opportunity learn learn more about the process and challenges of moving an idea into action, as well as the impact the programs have had on the region.  Lastly, the community mentors will foster an open discussion on current civic needs as identified by the students to further encourage leadership and engagement in our region.  We will explore the development of organizations and programs that advanced the arts, music, outdoor living and human services in our region.  Pittsburgh is consistently hailed as one of the most livable cities because of the innovative programs, leadership, and caring spirit that each of the mentors have brought to the community.  Please join us on March 16th for an intimate discussion with:

NR. Henry Reese and Diane Samuels                    City of Asylum
Joe Lagana                                                              Homeless Children's Education Fund
Scott Hollander                                                        Kidsvoice
Todd Owens and Michelle Pagono                         Nonprofit Talent
Scott Bricker                                                            Bike Pittsburgh
Chris Engler                                                             Eruption Athletics
Ilyssa Manspeizer                                                    Landforce 
Cathy Lewis Long                                                    The Sprout Fund
Chris Edmonds (former NFL)                                  Athletic Trauma Unit
Julius Boatwright                                                     Steel Smiling
John Wallace                                                           Homewood Children's Village
Terry Miller                                                               POWER & Elsie Hillman Civic Forum
Leah Lizarondo                                                        412 Food Rescue
Ben Soltesz                                                             Deutschtown Music Festival

Bobby Zappala                                                        Ascender (Thrival Festival)

Dr. Jim Withers                                                        Operation Safety Net
Nina Marie Barbuto                                                  Assemble

The program will open with an introduction to the Elsie Hillman Civic Forum, followed by keynote speaker, Dr. John Wallace, Jr, Professor in the school of Social Work Work, University of Pittsburgh.  Dr. Wallace is the principal investigator on the University of Pittsburgh Center on Race and Social Problems’ Comm-Univer-City of Pittsburgh Project, an integrated program of research, teaching, and service designed to investigate and ameliorate social problems that disproportionately impact economically disadvantaged children, families, and communities. This program includes the Homewood Children's Village, of which he is a co-founder.

The second half of the evening will be devoted to networking and learning from influential leaders who's ideas and actions are shaping the fabric of our community, so that Pittsburgh may truly be the most livable city in the United States. The evening agenda includes dinner and dessert reception and live music. 

Participants will receive OCC credit and a certificate of participation. 

Is this event open to all students?

Yes, the Never a Spectator program is open to all University of Pittsburgh students. It is important to the Elsie Hillman Civic Forum that participation reflects the diversity of our campus and region. Preference will be given to students who apply early.

How do I apply?

Registration will occur from February 1 - 24. RSVP here.

Selected students will receive a formal invitation and confirmation of attendance. We are very excited to host many regional leaders, therefore we are looking for robust participation. It is requested that you do not register for the program unless you are committed to attending, as space is limited. 

Why should I participate?

The Never a Spectator campus event will connect students through intimate round table discussions with three different local leaders. Through shared dialog students and established leaders will share visions of the future, elaborate on leadership skills and identify existing and new avenues for civic engagement. In a nutshell this event aims to inspire, connect, and grow relationship, providing students with a glimpse of the difference they can make in every corner of our world.

What are the goals of this event?

  1. To introduce students to the “Elsie way” of leadership – Engagement of others to inspire dramatic change!
  2. Engage in intimate round table discussions with fellow students and community leaders from different sectors of our society.
  3. Share in visions for the future with established leaders
  4. Strengthen leadership skills and identify existing and new avenues for civic engagement
  5. Be inspired, grow relationships, and receive a glimpse of the difference you can make in every corner of our world.