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Favorite Local Restaurants:

  • Pie for Breakfast

  • Bae Bae’s Kitchen

  • Piccolo Forno

Favorite Pittsburgh Activities:

  • Walking Clark (my dog) through the Point or Schenley Park

  • Picnicking in Mellon Park

  • Afternoons at Grist House Brewery

Sean Luther

Executive Director

Major Initiatives: 

  • Coordinating with neighborhood partners, university leaders, elected officials, and big thinkers

  • Developing the Innovation District real estate framework for Oakland-Uptown

  • Implementing recommendations from “Capturing the next economy

About Me:

I am excited to bring my experience applying advanced economic development, sustainability, mobility, urban place management and real estate fundamentals to InnovatePGH and the Pittsburgh Innovation District. I have been extremely fortunate to have previously launched several exciting Pittsburgh initiatives including Envision Downtown (a next-generation public/private partnership between Mayor Bill Peduto and the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership) and the Pittsburgh 2030 District (an aggressive, place-based energy, water, and transportation emission reduction program at Green Building Alliance) as well as serving as President/CEO of Downtown Roanoke, Inc. in Virginia.

I am a Pittsburgh boomeranger and I am easy to find on Fridays because I am usually wearing orange as a proud Clemson University alum (BS in Political Science and a Masters in Real Estate Development). In addition to my work at InnovatePGH, I serve on the Board of Directors for the International Downtown Association and Uptown Partners.

 

 
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Favorite Local Restaurants:

  • Square Café

  • Apteka

  • Thai Cuisine    

Favorite Pittsburgh Activities:

  • Escaping into Frick Park

  • Exploring different neighborhoods in and around the City

  • Grabbing a book from Copacetic Comics, pastry from Enrico Biscotti, latte from Espresso A Mano, & a seat out on Butler St.

Cassie Guerin

University partnerships director

Major Initiatives:

  • Developing a strategy to embed our world-class university assets into our City’s economic growth strategies

  • Forge meaningful relationships and act as a connector of people and research

  • Support start-up and technology spinouts from universities

About Me:

I am excited to be a part of the InnovatePGH team and bring my experience in facilitating cross-sector discussions, developing relationships, and connecting networks as a part of realizing the Pittsburgh Innovation District. Before InnovatePGH, I worked at a local data analytics firm and I started my career at Green Building Alliance (GBA).  At GBA I cultivated impact investment opportunities to address complex environmental challenges and co-developed a Pay for Success model and Benefit Fund concept to finance the implementation of large-scale green infrastructure in the Pittsburgh.

In addition to my work at InnovatePGH, I am a certified Kundalini Yoga and Meditation teacher.  I spent a year working abroad in New Zealand and studied in Australia and China. I love to travel and find inspiration from experiencing new places, people, and of course, all the different food!  But, I always return and I am proud to call Pittsburgh home. 

 

 
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Favorite Local Restaurants:

  • Cinderlands Beer Co.

  • Pizza Taglio

  • Istanbul Grille

Favorite Pittsburgh Activities:

  • Phipps Conservatory

  • Carnegie Museums (especially 21+ nights)

  • Finding delicious new bakeries

Ryan Foster

Operations MAnager

Major Initiatives:

  • Project managing the University Talent Alliance

  • Curating the Pittsburgh Innovation Company Directory

  • Research and operations for InnovatePGH and Avenu projects

About Me:

I am a Class of 2017 Graduate from the University of Richmond with a BA in Leadership Studies. I have a broad set of interests, some of which include leadership, research and data, organizational talent, and, of course, Pittsburgh! Before joining our team, I completed an extended internship in the Talent Team of Evoqua Water Technologies’ HR Department. During that time, I developed a fondness for talent attraction, career pipelines, and employee development.

I joined our team from its outset in the Fall of 2017, and I have been helping to build our internal organizational structure. I am also leading several research projects, including our Innovation Company Directory. In addition, I project manage the University Talent Alliance, an initiative engaging underrepresented populations to employ and develop them within partner universities.

 

 
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Favorite Local Restaurants:

  • Meat and Potatoes

  • Birmingham Bridge Tavern

  • Smallman Galley

Favorite Pittsburgh Activities:

  • Playing the 50/50 at Penguin games

  • Biking throughout the region’s trail network

  • Golfing on the weekends

Mike Madden

Economic development director

Major Initiatives:

  • Building amenities in Oakland and Uptown that support innovation and entrepreneurs

  • Furthering development in Oakland and Uptown in a sustainable manner

  • Providing strategy and assistance to community partners

About Me:

After five years in the consulting industry, I joined InnovatePGH and Avenu to help to accelerate Pittsburgh’s status as a global innovation city. My professional experience has allowed me to assist InnovatePGH and Avenu in strategically planning the future of Uptown and Oakland in parallel with the Pittsburgh Innovation District. These initiatives in Uptown and Oakland – which include commercial and office development, tech attraction and retainment, and community planning – are essential as we continue to work towards a more equitable local and regional economy.

As a lifelong Western Pennsylvanian and University of Pittsburgh GSPIA alum, I find it rewarding to help grow and improve Pittsburgh’s economy and quality of life.