Sponsored by

Profiles

Dan Rooney, Steelers Chairman and 30th United States Ambassador to Ireland

The Irish like to say ‘it’s a long way from Newry’—where my family comes from originally—‘to Phoenix Park,’ where I now live and work as the U.S. ambassador to Ireland. But believe me, it’s a much, much longer way to Phoenix Park from the North Side of Pittsburgh. My life in professional football was always …

Dan Rooney, Steelers Chairman and 30th United States Ambassador to Ireland Read More »

Richard P. Simmons

I am convinced that I am absolutely, positively the luckiest man in the world. During my business life, I seemed to be at the right place at the right time. When I graduated from college in 1953, metallurgy was at the beginning of a tremendous technology and manufacturing change, and I was part of it, because …

Richard P. Simmons Read More »

William S. Dietrich II, Businessman and Philanthropist

Once, Pittsburgh was the world capital of the steel industry and it was, as recently as 30 years ago, the third largest headquarters city in America. Back in the 1970s, when the mills began to shut down, we all sighed. “Well, there goes manufacturing. The muscles are gone. But at least the brains are still …

William S. Dietrich II, Businessman and Philanthropist Read More »

In the American Grain

Who are the preeminent individuals in American business history? A strong case might be made for a quintet: Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ford, Bill Gates, John D. Rockefeller and Sam Walton. Who is primus inter pares? It’s Henry Ford in a walk-away. Here’s why: Ford was an industrialist, inventor, aircraft pioneer, museum curator, horticulturist, labor progressive, …

In the American Grain Read More »

John Wetenhall, Ph.D., MBA

Very early one Sunday morning when I was in graduate school, I answered a phone call from a distinguished Stanford professor who summoned me in his gruff voice: “Get down to my office.” Albert Elsen, the great scholar on the sculpture of Auguste Rodin, had just been contacted by Raymond Nasher, a Dallas philanthropist and …

John Wetenhall, Ph.D., MBA Read More »

The Advisor: Jack Barbour

He has a super bowl ring, a friend in the Governor’s mansion, and he’s in charge of one of the country’s biggest law firms. To boot, he’s got a dinosaur exhibit to his credit. But for all his achievements, you won’t find Jack Barbour too close to the limelight. Which is just how he likes …

The Advisor: Jack Barbour Read More »

Wheeling v. Pittsburgh

Now he belongs to the ages.” Those famous words were uttered by U.S. Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton as the last breath of life fell from the lips of Abraham Lincoln. With the murder of Lincoln, the task of reconstruction would take a very different face and raise political retaliation in the U.S. to …

Wheeling v. Pittsburgh Read More »

Arnold Palmer, Golfing Legend and Entrepreneur

I was born in 1929 and raised during the Great Depression in Latrobe, Pa. Life was pretty tough in those days, but thankfully, my mother, father, little sister and I were together a whole lot of the time. We played golf, skied and went to movies—things like that—but we were basically homebodies. I have many …

Arnold Palmer, Golfing Legend and Entrepreneur Read More »

David M. Matter

If there’s one thread that runs through my life, it’s the importance of mentorship. I was born in 1946, which makes me a baby-boomer—barely—and grew up in Carrick. Overall, I had a pretty normal upbringing.My first mentor was a high school teacher named Bob Hickey. I had him for German, and he became a dear friend …

David M. Matter Read More »

Cyril H. Wecht, M.D., J.D.

My mother and father were immigrants who had a mom-and-pop grocery store, and they worked hard. I was an only child—born March 20, 1931—and, from the beginning, my father told me that I was going to be a doctor. I was an obedient child, so I never questioned it. Then as I moved through high …

Cyril H. Wecht, M.D., J.D. Read More »

Chip Ganassi, Auto Racing Entrepreneur

Growing up in the 1960s and ’70s, Pittsburgh was the center of the universe. All the biggest companies were here: U.S. Steel, Gulf Oil, Alcoa, PPG, Westinghouse; you name it. And on top of that, we had the Pirates and the Steelers. The city was firing on all cylinders, and I pictured myself running one …

Chip Ganassi, Auto Racing Entrepreneur Read More »

A City-Centric Provost

To hear Patricia Beeson describe it, driving into Pittsburgh through the Fort Pitt tunnel is like stumbling upon some kind of hidden Brigadoon. When she arrived in the city in 1983 after driving across the country from her native Oregon, Beeson had Simon and Garfunkel’s on-the-road anthem “America”—complete with reference to Pittsburgh—cued up for that first view …

A City-Centric Provost Read More »

Baby Byron Turns 18

In the 1990s, the “Baby Byron” case exposed the nation to Allegheny County’s child welfare system—and one family’s ultimately unsuccessful battle to complete a cross-racial adoption. “Baby Byron” turned 18 in July. And his story is far from over. It’s 90 degrees as we sit in front of the main Carnegie Library branch in Oakland …

Baby Byron Turns 18 Read More »

Bayer CEO: Greg Babe

Other football players were bigger and faster. That didn’t hold back Greg Babe. During summer days, he would run up and down the steps inside Magnolia High School in New Martinsville, W. Va. while his friends hung out at the pool. Those sweat-soaked workouts paid off: Babe rushed for 2,200 yards in 1975, a school …

Bayer CEO: Greg Babe Read More »

Dick Thornburgh, Lawyer and Politician

I’ve had three distinct phases of my career—from public prosecutor to elected official to Washington lawyer—and, strangely, they all came about serendipitously. I grew up in Pittsburgh and went to Yale as an engineering student, even though I was not really suited for it. A number of my family members were engineers, so I explored …

Dick Thornburgh, Lawyer and Politician Read More »

Thaddeus Mosley, Sculptor

Art is about personal expression. Anyone who discovers and practices this has something to live for other than what they have to do to make a living. People who write poetry don’t make a lot of money, but seeing their words on the page provides more satisfaction than any job could offer. It’s the same …

Thaddeus Mosley, Sculptor Read More »

A Friend in Need

Eleanor Ott grew up in a family that encouraged her to pursue her passion in life. What that passion was didn’t become clear until after she left her Lawrence, Kan. home as a high school valedictorian with a college scholarship. She discovered it among refugee families from Iraq, Burundi, Somalia and other desperate lands whose …

A Friend in Need Read More »

Word Brains

No two games of Scrabble are ever the same. But when the Pittsburgh Scrabble Club convenes on Wednesday nights, there’s a scene that replays itself over and over again. “Someone will show up for the first time and say ‘I’m here because nobody in my family wants to play me. They’re all tired of me …

Word Brains Read More »

Ron Freeman: Bringing Light to a Dark Science

Somewhere between Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo, sometime between assertions that America does not torture and insistence that the end justified the means, I remembered what a Pittsburgh police officer once told me about the head of the city’s Major Crimes Division: “Everybody confesses to Ron Freeman.” I first met Freeman almost a decade ago. The …

Ron Freeman: Bringing Light to a Dark Science Read More »

Robert Qualters, Artist

What’s it like to be 75? Well, I’ll tell you. I’ve had two knee replacements. I’ve had back surgery. I keep falling down and breaking things: my fingers, my skull. But overall I feel pretty good, actually. I still like to work. I just keep on going. I find some way to continue. My most …

Robert Qualters, Artist Read More »

Westinghouse CEO: Aris Candris

Aris Candris is not what you might expect. He skis black diamonds and enjoys snorkeling, scuba and free diving. On any given Sunday, he’ll jump on his bike and ride the hills of western Pennsylvania with no particular plan in mind. A perfect evening must include a great cigar. He and his wife value the …

Westinghouse CEO: Aris Candris Read More »

Thelma Williams Lovette, Social Worker and Community Leader

I was born in Pittsburgh on Feb. 28, 1916, the fifth of 11 children. My family and I lived at 1520 Wylie Ave. in the Hill District. And we all looked out for each other. In 1925, when I was just a girl, Mama and Papa took us to the opening of the Centre Avenue …

Thelma Williams Lovette, Social Worker and Community Leader Read More »

Top