Previously serving as Chief of Staff to his predecessor for nine years, Dan Gilman was elected to represent Pittsburgh’s Shadyside, Oakland, Squirrel Hill, and Point Breeze neighborhoods on Pittsburgh City Council in 2013. During his first term, Councilman Gilman has focused on creating a more accountable city government, embracing Pittsburgh’s technological renaissance in order to improve City services, and making Pittsburgh a more family-friendly and progressive city.
Throughout his first term, Councilman Gilman’s efforts led to a fairer and more accountable City government. Gilman sponsored a package of ordinances to revitalize and staff the City’s previously-defunct Ethics Board, strengthen the City’s campaign finance laws, and create an easily navigable web portal for City information, all aimed at developing a more transparent government. His property taxpayer fairness legislation limits the frequency and puts a two-year hold on residential property tax appeals to ensure that as Pittsburgh continues to grow, new homeowners are not welcomed to the city with a tax bill and that all property owners are assessed more fairly. His Mobile Council Office initiative brought City government to local universities and promoted vital interaction between college students and representatives from the City directly on campus. Finally, Councilman Gilman sponsored legislation to create an easily accessible schedule of fees for use city-owned facilities and services, which is tied to the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers (CPI-U).
Councilman Gilman has championed Pittsburgh’s rebirth as a nationwide leader in technology and innovation and led efforts to bring government into the 21st century. He introduced a three-pronged plan to improve public safety services, which includes an expanded CPR training program for residents, defibrillator registration, and the launch of an innovative smartphone app designed to alert bystanders of cardiac arrest incidents, thereby increasing chances of survival. Gilman played an integral role in launching Building Eye, an interactive software with zoning and permitting information that will become public at the end of 2016. In addition, he called on the Pittsburgh Parking Authority to utilize license plate recognition rather than stickers to identify permit holders, develop an online permit system, and authorize data sharing with the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police to locate stolen vehicles.
Part of his vision for a family-friendly Pittsburgh, Councilman Gilman sponsored legislation to create lactation rooms in both the Pittsburgh City-County Building and the John P. Robin Civic Building. These lactation rooms provide a safe space for working parents who need to breastfeed and pump and are available for both City employees and visitors to the building. In addition, Gilman organized a public-private partnership between the City of Pittsburgh and 501(c)(3) organization Sun Smart Pittsburgh to install free sunscreen dispensers in 8 locations throughout 5 City parks.
Councilman Gilman, who became a first-time parent in early 2016, believes strongly in guiding policy toward creating a more equitable and inclusive city for parents and prospective parents to work, live, and raise their children. He sponsored legislation to require that the City and its contractors make reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers. He also led efforts to find a sustainable funding source for the Backpack Initiative, which provides nutritious weekend meals and snacks for students who receive free and reduced-price lunch. This program has since been replicated in other Pittsburgh Public Schools.
During his first-term, Councilman Gilman reinforced his commitment to a more progressive Pittsburgh. Bringing together local mobile food entrepreneurs and brick-and-mortar businesses, Gilman introduced and passed modern legislation paving the way for food trucks owners to operate more freely in the City of Pittsburgh and replacing an antiquated ordinance that was designed for ice cream trucks of decades’ past. With the passage of the legislation, food trucks are now able to remain in the same location for four hours, operate in areas within Schenley and Frick Parks, and park in metered spots throughout the City. Additionally, food truck operators will be encouraged to adopt environmentally sustainable and socially responsible business practices, operate in underserved city neighborhoods, and serve healthy and nutritious foods. The legislation creates a more welcoming place for food trucks, which have become an integral part of Pittsburgh’s internationally recognized food scene.
In addition, Gilman sponsored legislation calling on Pittsburgh authorities to develop clear non-discrimination policies based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. He introduced legislation to prohibit housing-related discrimination against an individual based on their status as a victim of domestic violence or stalking. He also played an integral role in launching Solarize Pittsburgh’s solar energy programs in the Point Breeze and Squirrel Hill communities.
Gilman has received many awards and accolades for his hard work. He was selected as one of only twelve leaders nationwide to join The New DEAL, a national network committed to highlighting innovative ideas from state and local elected leaders. He was also appointed to the National League of Cities (NLC) University Communities Council. He has also been recognized as one of Pittsburgh’s “40 Under 40” by Pittsburgh Magazine and Pittsburgh Urban Magnet Project, as well as one of Pittsburgh’s “50 Finest” by Whirl Magazine.
Councilman Gilman graduated from Pittsburgh’s Shady Side Academy, and then with honors from Carnegie Mellon University with a degree in Ethics, History, and Public Policy. He currently serves on the boards of the Sports & Exhibition Authority, Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, the Silk Screen Film Festival and Arts Organization, and the Advisory Board of the National Veterans Art Museum.