Ackerman, Johnson, Vidunas, Davis, Herchenroether, Deiseroth

Jeffrey Ackerman, 69A founding partner of CBRE, Ackerman was an icon in the region’s commercial real estate industry for decades and served as CBRE’s managing director in Pittsburgh from 2013 until January. He was working at Arnheim & Neely in the 1990s when CB Commercial came looking for an existing brokerage with which to partner. …

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Now and Then: Artemesia Genteleschi and Kehinde Wiley at the Frick

The Frick has gifted us with a rare treat: the opportunity to view an iconic work from the 17th century paired with a major work of our century. The two paintings of the Judith and Holofernes story, created four centuries apart, comprise “Slay” which is on exhibit through Sunday. Artemesia Gentileschi’s version depicts the classic …

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Oh, Say Can You Sing?

During the winter months, every executive in the Pittsburgh Pirates organization is thinking about the upcoming season. Chris Serkoch isn’t pondering who’ll bat clean-up, whether a platoon will work in left field, or how she can line up the bullpen. Her concerns, though, are just as vital. Serkoch is wondering who will perform the national …

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Charming and Impossible

Stefan Lorant was a dashing, debonaire fellow when he was young, and even in his late old age he remained attractive to women. One 40-year-old divorcée recalls having an affair with Lorant when the latter was in his eighties. “He was impossibly romantic,” she told me. Previously in this series: Stefan Lorant Part II, The …

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Curley, Martin, Kreisman, Rocher, Sarni, Lampl

Mary Taylor Walton Curley, 97The daughter of John and Rachel Mellon Walton and granddaughter of Gulf Oil founder William Larimer Mellon, she graduated from Vassar and worked at Pitt after World War II assisting women veterans on the GI Bill. She and her husband, oil executive Walter Curley, lived all over the world, from India …

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What Can I Do to Slow or Prevent the Onset of Osteoporosis?

Question: I was recently informed that I may be suffering from osteoporosis or weakening of the bones.  What if anything can I do to improve my bone health?  Take some solace in the fact that your situation is not uncommon. Osteoporosis, which literally means “porous bone,” is a condition where the quality, quantity and strength of …

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Teeing off for Brother’s Brother

The Brother’s Brother Foundation hosted its Annual Golf Classic last week at the Fox Chapel Golf Club in Pittsburgh. The event, which raises money for local education and healthcare initiatives, featured some 90 golfers and numerous sponsors, including main sponsors Highmark and UPMC as well as Caroline and Tom Wentling, Gayle and Bill Simpson, BNY Mellon, …

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The Selling of Mellon

Editor’s Note: This article is based on the upcoming book published by Lyons Press:“From Swampoodle to Mellon Bank CEO; An Irish American’s Journey, the Autobiography of Martin G. McGuinn Jr.” When I came to Mellon Bank in 1981, it was the dominant bank in Pittsburgh, much to the chagrin of Pittsburgh National Bank, which later, …

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The Book on Pittsburgh

Wherever Stefan Lorant went in his life – whatever job he held, whatever town he lived in, whatever nation – he had a remarkable knack for being in the right place and for sniffing out who the most important people were and meeting and befriending them. Previously in this series: Stefan Lorant, Part I In …

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A Parent’s Shame

She grips a chunk of chalk in her fistscratches onto black construction paperfamiliar fury of scribbles:a moon todayyesterday, an egg someone’s headside by side, two are apples.  Sometimesthe picture isn’t the pointit’s powder on palmswows and ooohs and beautifulsfingers and focus and finishingit’s preschool prideit’s fine-motor joy neither of us realizingshe’s tall enough nowto see into …

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Russia, Ukraine and the Markets

Editor’s note: Pittsburgh Quarterly recently asked regional financial experts to respond to the following question:  The Russian invasion of Ukraine has further increased energy and food prices and disrupted supply lines for key manufacturing inputs. What are the implications for the global and U.S. economies? James Armstrong, Henry Armstrong Associates Free and open trade have …

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Kinetic Theatre’s World Premiere of “The Illustrious Invalid”

There is a saying in the world of martial arts that “Control is the mother of speed,” and it could be said that in the world of theater, control – in the form of precise writing, acting, and directing – is the mother of farce.  In both cases, when speed is the sole objective, things …

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The Spring 2022 issue:

The $3,000 Hippopotamus

“Lucy is dead” was the headline of the March 17, 1902 Pittsburgh Press article that announced the passing of Lucy Juba-Nile, the popular hippopotamus that had been dwelling at the Highland Park Zoological Garden (now called the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium) for the previous three years. Lucy had been ill for about a week. …

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Professionals new to Pittsburgh

David Holiday is the director for the Center for Ethical Leadership and instructor of philosophy at Washington & Jefferson College. Prior to joining W&J, Holiday held the position of director of the Jackson Family Center for Ethics and Values at Coastal Carolina University, where he also served as lecturer in the Department of Philosophy and …

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Nettle: The Weed that Stings

What is a weed? A plant in the wrong place is a common definition, or as Ralph Waldo Emerson said: “a plant whose virtues we haven’t yet discovered.” But nettles — weeds to most of us — have virtues long discovered. Samuel Pepys wrote in his diary of eating very good nettle porridge. In Aesop’s …

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Cohill, Corbett, Walton, Lewis, Wymard, Ford

Judge Maurice Cohill Jr., 92A national leader in juvenile justice, Cohill heard hundreds of cases involving juveniles and often had adults tell him how his influence had turned their lives around. He founded the nation’s oldest juvenile justice research organization, the National Center for Juvenile Justice in Pittsburgh, and was its chairman for decades. In …

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No More Love Letters

I have always been amused by Hollywood’s vision of writers at work. The writer is presented seated at a desk on which sits a typewriter or a computer. Suddenly the writer seems inspired and begins typing feverishly. The camera stays on him as he continues to type, and his manuscript grows page by page into …

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Darken Our Skies to Help the Birds

Who doesn’t love the sparkle of the Downtown skyline when cheering on the Pirates at PNC Park? I’ve sat marveling at the view across the water as the Bucs warm up and the stadium lights begin to come on. The glass, metal and stone are iconic of the Steel City. Then I imagine birds migrating …

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Infrastructure Bonanza

It promises to be a busy couple of years for Vincent Valdes. As the federal government begins to pump $1.2 trillion into the nation’s infrastructure, the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission he leads is in the thick of discussions around how to spend the region’s share, which will be counted in hundreds of millions of dollars and …

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A Troubling Economic Picture

The Pittsburgh metropolitan statistical area’s economy enters 2022 in much the same condition as it exhibited prior to the pandemic. That is, growing, but doing so at a pace below the national average and under the yoke of subpar labor market conditions. Even though the bar has been lowered as to what economic growth targets …

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Fuller Brook Dreams

I had seen the stream many times before, in my dreams. As someone averse to synthetic sleep aids, I’ve always relied instead on my mind to take me to one of my happy places: a rugged and undeveloped coastline with soaring seagulls and salty air; my grandmother’s kitchen table; a sweet stream flowing through the …

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Back to the Future

Most students in 19th century America walked to their local one-room schoolhouse to learn reading, writing and arithmetic in a classroom with a handful of other kids ranging in age and ability. With the youngest children seated at the front of the class, they memorized and recited their lessons. Once a mainstay of public education …

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Pittsburgh Opera’s “In a Grove” – a Revelation of Sound and Sight

In speaking of opera, French composer Claude Debussy praised what he termed “music that’s lit from within,” and this might be the best way to describe Pittsburgh Opera’s world premiere of “In a Grove,” a phantasmagoric reinterpretation of the eponymous story by Japan’s great modernist writer, Ryūnosuke Akutagawa.  The original narrative, published in 1922 — …

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What do I Know? Leslie Davis

My family is from New York, and my younger sister and I grew up in a suburban neighborhood on Long Island called “Five Towns,” which is about a 20-minute drive from Kennedy Airport. We were a typical 1970s family, except that my mother was an oral hygienist in a dentist’s office and loved her job. …

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College Students Wanted

When the United States slid into the Great Recession, throwing millions out of work, America went back to school. Older adults enrolling in community colleges or other two-year programs led a surge in enrollment that saw colleges add 2.5 million students from 2007-2010, a 14 percent enrollment spike. School administrators were elated. “We all thought, …

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Just Asking…Byron Stripling

Q: what’s the most interesting thing about your job?A: I get paid to do what I love! Q: what’s the best advice anybody ever gave you?A: Everything you want is on the other side of fear. Q: how do you start the day?A: It starts with gratitude for the gift of another day. As Maya …

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Weak Regional Jobs Picture Continues

Employers in the seven-county Pittsburgh Metropolitan Statistical Area shed 25,000 jobs from December 2021 to January 2022 – a 2.2 percent monthly loss, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Seasonal job losses are typical in January, but other data offer little hope that local jobs will snap back to pre-COVID levels. Annual revisions …

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A Little Slice of Heaven

My chainsaw is little. Like, really little. A baby chainsaw. The love child of gas-powered monsters that guys twice my size use to slice through the trunk of a 200-year pine as if it were a stick of butter. Those blades are as long as my leg. This blade, the one on my chainsaw, is …

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Infrastructure Bonanza

It promises to be a busy couple of years for Vincent Valdes. As the federal government begins to pump $1.2 trillion into the nation’s infrastructure, the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission he leads is in the thick of discussions around how to spend the region’s share, which will be counted in hundreds of millions of dollars and …

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America – Where Agency Flourishes

“In the beginning all the world was America.” — John Locke Previously in this series: On Agency Part VII Turning from China to the West Last week we observed human agency as it collapsed in Rome but was championed by the Germanic tribes that would eventually defeat the Roman Empire. The “freedom of the German …

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Night Out for the Aviary

The National Aviary’s “Gentlemen’s Night Out” at the PNC Champions Club at Heinz Field included cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, a four-course dinner with wine pairings, live music, and an assortment of premium cigars. Michael Mascaro, Aviary trustee and Executive Vice President of Mascaro Construction, hosted the benefit which included guests: Pittsburgh Steelers alumni Matt Spaeth, Craig Bingham, and JT Thomas, …

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