Nonprofits

The Torch Is Passed

The next generation of the Mellon family has taken the reins of the largest grant-making organization in western Pennsylvania. Richard A. Mellon, 56, has been named chairman and chief executive officer of the Richard King Mellon Foundation and the R. K. Mellon Family Foundation, the boards of both foundations announced. He succeeds Seward Prosser Mellon, …

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Disability Community Looks to Commonwealth Leaders for Hope and Help

With a re-elected governor sworn back in for his second term, a new lieutenant governor snug in his new office and a gaggle of new legislators joining lawmaking hands with their seasoned colleagues, it’s time for Harrisburg to settle in and begin work one of its most vexing tasks: enacting a fair, adequate and balanced …

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Pittsburgh’s Hardest Working Angel

Enter the warehouse and, if you aren’t bewildered by the seeming randomness of it all, you get a sense of the urgency. Mobile hospital beds. Crutches. Respirators. IV poles guarding bedpans. Hundreds of boxes of pharmaceuticals. Medical equipment bound for Nigeria, Uganda, Guyana. And for some reason, dozens of suitcases, many of them more than …

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A Friend Indeed

In 2012, PNC Marketing specialist Shannon Tremblay brought her beagle mix, Crockett, to Animal Friends to have it neutered and take part in their puppy kindergarten program. “I just fell in love with the place,” says Tremblay. “There was something really special about what they were doing, and I knew I wanted to be a …

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The Right Thing To Do

It had stormed the night before, hard enough to postpone the Pirates game and scrub the air, leaving it sharp and glittering for the early morning joggers along the North Shore Trail. The bridges overhead buzzed with the aggregate sound of thousands of people going to work. Halfway between PNC Park and Heinz Field, two …

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“It’s Bitcoin for Volunteers”

Dan Little has wanted to build the infrastructure of the future for a long time. So while he enrolled at Carnegie Mellon University to study architecture, he switched to civil engineering. “The recession happened and Obama got elected and there were all these promises about infrastructure. I thought, ‘It sounds like civil engineering is going …

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A New Initiative

John Kane was the quintessential Pittsburgh working man: tough, hard-working, unpretentious, and yet extraordinarily creative. He emigrated from Scotland in 1879, worked for Frick’s coke works, Carnegie’s steel mill and the Pennsylvania Railroad where he became a painter of boxcars for the railroad. Later, emerging as a true artist, he created some of the most …

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A New Philanthropic Direction

Since the Buhl Foundation began in 1927, Pittsburgh’s philanthropic landscape has changed dramatically, with the creation of the Richard King Mellon Foundation, Heinz Endowments, Hillman Foundation, The Pittsburgh Foundation, Grable Foundation, Colcom Foundation, Benedum Foundation and McCune Foundation, among many others. This rich collection of foundation partners has embroidered the fabric of Pittsburgh— from human …

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For the children and the community

Mist emerges with an audible hiss from the vertical stainless steel poles of “Cloud Arbor,” the new artwork by Ned Kahn in the redesigned Buhl Community Park on the North Side across from the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. A delighted toddler runs toward it, to assess the wafting, San Francisco-like fog that collects and disperses …

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The Nuance of Nonprofits

Michael Clements looked at a vacant downtown building, with its chipped paint, outdated awning and weathered bricks. It was an eyesore, but one he knew he had to have. Three years later, the building thrives, housing the second location of the Penn Avenue Fish Company restaurant and two spacious loft apartments upstairs. “I picked the …

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Riding Out the Storm

As the curtain rose on the last scene of “The Barber of Seville,” it grazed a table that had been placed too close to the front of the stage. A miniature cannon propped on the table fell  with a clang. Everyone in the theater stopped. From his seat in the darkened Benedum Center, Pittsburgh Opera Director …

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Beyond the Neighborhood

For those of us raising families in the 1970s and 1980s, Fred Rogers was that patient, soft-spoken gentleman who made extraordinary connections to our children on the same TV set that usually carried appallingly bad programming. Fred certainly was that wonderful television teacher, but he was much more. He was the genius behind the most …

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Personal Investment

As a Pittsburgh police commander, Gwen Elliott knew the struggles of girls in the city’s toughest neighborhoods. When she retired in 2002, she founded Gwen’s Girls, a nonprofit that would look out for them. But from the beginning, Elliott knew it needed to grow. That’s where Pittsburgh Social Venture Partners came in. Operating on the idea …

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Going to Town

When John Stahl-Wert, then pastor of the Mennonite church in Pittsburgh, received a request from the national Church to design a program to strengthen the Mennonite community and impact the city, he knew what was needed. “I went home that evening and wrote on a single piece of paper that we would create a one-year, …

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Money for merit

Armen Arevian hunched over his laptop in the Shadyside Starbucks. A joint Ph.D./M.D. neuroscience student at Pitt and Carnegie Mellon, he studies the sense of smell and nerve pathways by which the brain processes information. “We’re trying to understand how we know it’s a rose,” Armen said. “In my work we listen in on neurons’ conversation. …

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An Experience

Inside a red brick Victorian in Aspinwall, on computer hard drives and forms stacked high on the desks of the Tickets For Kids Foundation staff, opportunities are gathered daily that will transport the region’s neediest children to places never seen and worlds never experienced. The Grand Lobby of Heinz Hall. A summer camp in the …

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Hero worship

In his 1889 essay, “The Gospel of Wealth,” Andrew Carnegie gave what is considered to be the first public airing of the idea that the rich have a moral duty to return wealth to the community. That and his subsequent deeds are credited with giving rise to modern philanthropy. On the occasion of the first …

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