Next Generation Council

Mission

Emerging leaders thinking critically and acting collaboratively with regional stakeholders to elevate a racial, ethnic and generational diversity of talent in the Pittsburgh region.

Vision

To collectively make the Pittsburgh region inclusive, welcoming, and thriving for all.

The Next Generation Council was created to engage millennial leaders in the retention work happening in the Pittsburgh region, with the goal of gaining better insight into what young professionals think about the region and what impacts their desire and ability to stay in the region. As the millennial generation is diverse and highly mobile, their decision to stay in or leave our region will make a significant impact on our population growth and economic vitality over the next 20 years. The Next Generation Council is an important voice for the future of southwestern Pennsylvania.

Council Members

Adeshewa Metzger

Bookkeeper

Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy

With over 15 years of experience developing programs that benefit the community, Adeshewa Metzger, the Bookkeeper at Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy specializes in non-profit strategic planning and accounting. She is a graduate of the other CMU, Central Michigan University, with a degree in Business Management and has minors in both Art and General Science. Adeshewa Metzger is married, has two young girls, and enjoys reading and gardening.

Adeshewa’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “Intentional community outreach by business with DEI impacts in recruiting,  programming and stakeholder planning.”

When asked to share a fun fact, Adeshewa stated, “My daughter's and I recently built a robot crab.”


Allison Lambacher

Manager of Subscription Marketing

Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra

Allison’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “I envision a city where the arts are accessible to anyone who is interested.”

When asked to share a fun fact, Allison stated, “I much prefer cookie dough and cake batter to the actual cooked desserts!”

Allison has an MBA and BM, Music Performance from Duquesne University.


Amy Burnett

Data Coordinator

Encentiv Energy

Amy’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “to help bring more diverse and talented individuals to the area.”


She is an MBA graduate and plays the banjo!


Benjy Blanco

Creative Arts Manager

Achieva

Benjy is proud to have moved back, to say Pittsburgh can feel like a home, and to see how far this town has come.

Benjy’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “Diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives create welcoming spaces that incentivize talented young professionals to move to Pittsburgh and stay. As the workforce improves, the city improves, and that in turn attracts better and better talent. This ripple effect with small beginnings pays off in big ways. DEI isn't just a buzzword - it's as integral to community revitalization as a thriving business district, or a road without a pothole.”

When asked to share a fun fact, Benjy stated, “I probably live in the one log cabin that happens to be closest to downtown.”

Benjy has a BA from the University of Pittsburgh and an MFA from California College of the Arts.


Chris Mielo

Communications Manager

Achieva

Chris’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “I'd like to see full representation and opportunity for everyone to create a truly diverse and vibrant Pittsburgh community.”

When asked to share a fun fact, Chris stated, “I coach the Pittsburgh Steelwheelers Wheelchair Basketball team.”

Chris has a B.A. in TV/Video Production from Robert Morris University.


Daniel Salahuddin

Resident Physician

UPMC

Daniel grew up in Bradenton, Florida and recently moved to Pittsburgh. 


“Since being in Pittsburgh, I have

been struck by the ways in which this city is a microcosm of much of the United States. While I am with patients, I see and hear stories of how the lived experience in Pittsburgh

differs for many depending on numerous factors. While there are seemingly endless opportunities in this city and so much potential for growth, there remain significant barriers

to harnessing this energy to benefit everyone in an

equitable way. I look forward to serving on the Next Generation Council to help define and work through these complex issues so that Pittsburgh can be regarded as a premier location for all, locals and newcomers alike.”

Daniel’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “Fostering a more collaborative, connected, and interdisciplinary environment grounded in healing and liberation.”

When asked to share a fun fact, Daniel stated, “I am an avid cook and baker, and also enjoy making ice cream when I have free time.”

Daniel received his undergraduate degree at Saint Leo University, and attended medical school at the University of Miami.


Darrell Baltimore

Human Resource Specialist

Carnegie Mellon University

Darrell is a Pittsburgh Native currently working at Carnegie Mellon University as a Human Resource Specialist, where he ​specializes in Data Analytics. Prior to his current role, Darrell worked at General Nutrition Inc. ​as a Benefits Administrator where he assisted employees and vendors with all benefit inquiries such as benefit enrollments and leave of absence requests.

Outside of his career at Carnegie Mellon University, Darrell is pursuing a master’s degree in Public Management from Carnegie Mellon University. Upon the completion of his master’s degree, Darrell hopes to help develop minority businesses within the Pittsburgh Region by planning new market entry strategies and business frameworks.

With this being Darrell’s second year on Vibrant Pittsburgh’s Next Generation Council, he looks to make a significant impact on retaining minority talent within the region as the council’s newly elected Co-chair.

Darrell’s motto is “All challenges can be conquered with resilience.”

“In the wise words of Quincy Jones, ‘I don’t have problems. I have puzzles.’ The key to achieving success is finding the right fit for the pieces.” – Darrell Baltimore


Itha Cao

Senior Civic Innovation Specialist

City of Pittsburgh, Department of Innovation and Performance

Itha is the Senior Civic Innovation Specialist at the City of Pittsburgh, Department of Innovation and Performance, where she ​leads the City's Civic Tech efforts through external partnerships and is the program manager of PGHLab, the City's urban incubator for startups. Prior to her current role, Itha served ​as a Policy Analyst for Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto, Office of Equity, focusing on special programs and initiatives that impacted vulnerable communities: digital equity and inclusion, food insecurity, land recycling, and Asian American affairs.

She is also the chef and sole owner of The Hungry Cao, offering Chinese cooking classes and private events that since 2017 has had the dual mission of ​elevating the standing of ethnic Chinese cuisine in Pittsburgh and fundraising for an intersectional social justice cause.

Itha believes in civic engagement through diverse representation and currently serves as the Impact Officer for the World Economic Forum’s Pittsburgh Global Shapers community, is a Commissioner on Governor Wolf’s Commission for Women, and serves on the Boards of: Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation, Civically, Vibrant Pittsburgh, the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh, and the Pittsburgh Urban Magnate (PUMP). She is also a proud high school mentor in the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program.


Maple Chen

Associate Merchant

American Eagle Outfitters

Maple’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “Pittsburgh has so much incredible culture, but it can be hard to find your place in the community. I hope to see individuals from all backgrounds flourish and find connections across groups, as we can do much more together than we can separately.”

When asked to share a fun fact, Allison stated, “I used to perform in a musical theatre troupe in college, and still love to connect with others through the performing arts!”

Allison has a B.A. in Economics from Cornell University.


Micah J. Thompson

Engaged Learning & Community Involvement Adviso

Robert Morris Universit

Micah’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “America reflects so many different kinds of beautiful people. I'd like to see the vastness of this diversity reflected in Pittsburgh across all industries and institutions. My efforts in helping undergraduates get engaged on campus and in the community will hopefully cultivate a sense of belonging and a desire to stay and work in Pittsburgh.”

When asked to share a fun fact, Micah stated, “I've traveled to seven different countries.”

Micah has a Master of Business Administration (MBA).



Nicollete Knight

Talent Management Coordinator

Equitrans Midstream

Nicollete’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “to continuously educate folks on our unconscious biases and the importance of being aware of these. My vision is for the community of Pittsburgh to keep embracing all racial, ethnic, and generational diversity and be known as a safe place for all backgrounds of life.”

Nicollete has a Bachelors of Arts in Psychology at Kent State University with a minor in Human Resource Management, and also a boating license!


Sam Musselman

Program Manager - Employer Engagement

Katz Graduate School of Business - University of Pittsburgh

Sam grew up in the Boston area and only first visited Pittsburgh once they had committed to attend Pitt. Sam has lived here ever since and loves the city!

Sam’s  vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is to make every resident feel they can excel, every student feel they can grow, every visitor feel they want to stay, and everyone to feel they belong. By continuing to create and promote opportunities for people of diverse backgrounds our city can continue to grow and our neighborhoods that we have so much pride in will flourish more than ever!

When asked to share a fun fact, Sam stated, “I love soccer and have been coaching at a high school in the region for the past 7 years.”

Sam has a B.S. Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh and an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh - Katz Graduate School of Business.


Samson Horne

Digital Media Manager

Duquesne Light Company

Samson Horne serves as the Associate Manager of Digital Media at Duquesne Light Company, where he helps shape the organization’s external communication strategy by having discussions with and creating engaging content for customers on social media, and providing informative messaging in email newsletters and on the company website. He also writes press releases and generates stories for the company’s news archives. Prior to his current role, Samson was a newspaper reporter and night producer for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review where he worked as a general assignment reporter covering Pittsburgh and its eastern suburbs.

 

A proud brother of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., Samson serves as a communications liaison for the Pittsburgh graduate (Iota Phi) chapter of the historically-Black international organization. In that role, he is responsible for public affairs for the chapter including writing press releases, sponsorship requests and coordinating media interviews with chapter officers. Samson believes in empowering Black communities through civic engagement and is enthusiastic about the work that Iota Phi has done throughout Pittsburgh neighborhoods, from feeding those in need during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic to hosting a virtual “Omega Carter G. Woodson Academy” focused on Black History, Art and STEAM curriculum for school-aged children on the weekends.

 

Samson is a greater-Atlanta area native who graduated from the University of Pittsburgh, where he played football and studied communications with a focus on children’s media. He decided to make the Steel City his permanent home after receiving his master’s degree in Journalism from Point Park University. He is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists, Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and Pittsburgh Black Media Federation.

 

He lives in Dormont with his girlfriend, Tyra, who is an attorney, and their children Kairos and Yara.


Shelby Mastovich

Director of Member Engagement

Pittsburgh Technology Council

Shelby’s vision for DEI in the Pittsburgh region is “Incorporating DEI across industries is essential for Pittsburgh to continue positive growth and increase wellbeing for all folks in our region. I get excited thinking about this enormous opportunity - especially when engaging with so many of our region's employers in my work who are already dedicated to implementing DEI strategies. It is of utmost importance that our thriving tech community take advantage of the chance to incorporate DEI in order to enhance innovations that help all of society.”

When asked to share a fun fact, Shleby stated, “I am passionate about sustainability and in my spare time work as an entrepreneur focused on the circular economy.”

Allison has a BA in Sociology from Pennsylvania State University.



Andrea Vasquez

Senior Group Banking Representative

Dollar Bank


Ashli White

Summer Analyst Program Manager

BYN Mellon


Audra Beatty

Corporate HR Manager

Carmeuse


Brittney Krieger

HRIS Analyst

Bayer


Emma Wallis Jones

Analyst - Client Experience

Allegheny County Department of Human Services, Office of Data Analysis, Research, and Evaluation


Hannah Darkey

Corporate Recruiter

Larson Design Group


Ja'Lisa Brown

Benefits Specialist

Alcoa


Jessica Franklin

Corporate Communications Manager

Koppers


Kathryn Gigler

Director of Education

Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre


Ketwana D. Schoos

Civil Rights Investigator

Community College of Allegheny County


Laura Graeber

IT Consultant

Bayer U.S. LLC


Logan Williams

Organizational Development Manager

Allegheny County Airport Authority


Nelson Cooper IV

Assistant Vice President, Underwriter - Financial Institutions & Professional Sports

The PNC Financial Services Group


Shanel Divito

Director of Inclusion and Collaboration

Pittsburgh Mercy