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The Advanced Leadership Initiative and Carnegie Mellon University Launch 2021 Cohort of the Executive Leadership Academy

The Advanced Leadership Initiative and Carnegie Mellon University Launch 2021 Cohort of the Executive Leadership Academy

PR Newswire

PITTSBURGH, Jan. 22, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The Advanced Leadership Initiative (TALI) and Carnegie Mellon University are pleased to announce the launch of the 2021 cohort of the Executive Leadership Academy, which is beginning its third year. The Executive Leadership Academy (ELA) is TALI's signature program and part of an ongoing effort to build a pipeline of African American leaders who are prepared to contribute to their organizations and communities at the highest level.

This year's 28 cohort members were selected based on applications from some of Pittsburgh's experienced and highly accomplished African American leaders. They will participate in an 8-month, world-class executive education program through Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business, which provides leadership development training as well as curriculum that addresses the specific challenges faced by African Americans in the workplace. Cohort members will also be matched with a professional coach and an executive mentor to leverage relationships and maximize their experience.

"TALI's commitment to preparing Pittsburgh's African Americans for the challenges faced in executive leadership is increasingly more relevant.  I am inspired by the enthusiasm and passion of each member of this cohort. It is my pleasure to welcome this group that will join a growing network to impact our city in significant ways," says Evan Frazier, Founding Director of The Advanced Leadership Initiative and Senior Vice President of Community Affairs at Highmark Health.  

"In addition to the 2021 Executive Leadership Academy cohort, we celebrate the organizations that support them through sponsorship or advocacy. These organizations have demonstrated a commitment to furthering a culture that embraces racial equity with senior leadership setting the tone," says Greg Spencer, Founding Board Co-Chair of The Advanced Leadership Initiative and President and CEO of Randall Industries. 

"As an institution of higher learning and a prominent pillar in the Pittsburgh region, we are committed to promoting inclusion and equity," said Isabelle Bajeux-Besnainou, Dean of the Tepper School of Business. "We are proud partners of TALI and share in its mission to elevate Black leaders to positions of power and influence in our community."

Executive Leadership Academy – 2021 Cohort:

Dara Ware Allen, Ph.D., CEO & Principal, City Charter High School (Leadership Pittsburgh-TALI Fellow)

Scott A. Bartlett, Director, Supply Chain US/Canada, PPG

Olivia Benson, Chief Operating Officer, The Forbes Fund (BNY Mellon-TALI Fellow)

Tammy Spencer Bey, Vice President – Business Tech Liaison, Bank of New York Mellon

Kimberly Brevard, Senior Director Claim Operations, UPMC Health Plan

Michael Crawford, Managing Director Finance & Admin, FEDEX Ground

James E. Doyle, Ed.D., Chief Operating Officer, Environmental Charter School

Onyeka Egbuna, Audit Director, FHLB Pittsburgh

Darnell GrinageDirector, Environmental Services, UPMC

Stephanie Morgan, Sr. Human Resources Business Partner, Director, BNY Mellon

Shelly Hogans, Vice President of External Reporting and SOX Compliance, Limbach Holdings, Inc.

Rebekah Hughey, MD, Medical Director, Gateway Health

Cynthia L. James, President & CEO, Youth Places, Inc.

Shabaki Lambert, Assistant Vice President, HR Strategic Initiatives, Carnegie Mellon University

Jameeta Lewis-Davis, Director, Team Member Communications & Engagement – Supermarket, Giant Eagle

Jessica Mitchell, Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer of Retail Banking, PNC

Kimberly Moses, Senior Associate Legal Counsel, University of Pittsburgh

Jennifer Pannill, Recruitment & Employer Branding Lead, Covestro LLC

Thomas Powell, Financial Solution Advisor, Merrill Lynch

Jennifer Rice, Director, Dental & Vision Operations, UPMC Health Plan

Albert Robertson, Business Systems Manager, Koppers, Inc.

Rebecca Ross Haywood, Managing Chief Counsel, Government & Regulatory Enforcement Group, PNC

Alicia Scott, Executive Director Care Management, Allegheny Health Network

Morton D. Stanfield, Jr., Senior Vice President, Community Development, Dollar Bank, FSB

Jamila Sykes, Director, Provider Experience, Highmark Health

Diamonte Walker, Deputy Executive Director, Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh

Christina Wilds, DrPH, Manager, Community Health and Programs, Highmark Health

Marisa Williams, Chief Executive Officer, Hearth

The Advanced Leadership Initiative has received support from major corporations and foundations in the Pittsburgh region, including Lead Contributors: The Heinz Endowments, BNY Mellon Foundation of SWPA, Hillman Family Foundations, and The Richard King Mellon Foundation. Current Presenting Sponsors: Highmark Health, PNC, and UPMC. Contributors: Buhl Foundation and The Pittsburgh Foundation.  Gold Sponsors: Bank of America, BNY Mellon, Covestro, Dollar Bank, FHL Bank Pittsburgh, Gateway Health, Giant Eagle, Giant Eagle Foundation, Koppers, and PPG. Silver Sponsors: Ernst & Young (EY) and Wabtec. POISE Foundation has served as Fiscal Sponsor for TALI since its inception.

The Executive Leadership Academy is an 8-month executive education program offered in partnership with Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business to prepare African American leaders for advancement.

For information about The Advanced Leadership Initiative or the Executive Leadership Academy, visit


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