Office of Mayor William Peduto
Pittsburgh and Allegheny County Take Next Steps in "My Brother's Keeper" Initiative
100 leaders expected at summit on providing opportunities to young people of color

PITTSBURGH, PA (Oct. 24, 2014) -  The City of Pittsburgh, working with partners in Allegheny County and other community leaders, is taking further steps to implement the local version of President Barack Obama’s “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative, which is seeking ways to provide more opportunities to boys and young men of color.

In September the President issued a challenge to cities, counties, town and tribes nationwide to become “MBK Communities,” wherein elected officials work with local partners to forge long-term and strategic programs to help the job and life development of at-risk young people.

The six goals of My Brother’s Keeper are:

  • Ensuring all children enter school cognitively, physically, socially and emotionally ready

  • Ensuring all children read at grade level by 3rd grade

  • Ensuring all youth graduate from high school

  • Ensuring all youth complete post-secondary education or training

  • Ensuring all youth out of school are employed

  • Ensuring all youth remain safe from violent crime

The White House laid out steps for each participating MBK community to follow -- from taking surveys to holding community-wide meetings -- and Pittsburgh is in the midst of implementing each requirement.

In late September the city began surveying key members of the community to identify the top goals for the local My Brother’s Keeper drive. The surveys indicated the top three needs for young men of color in the greater Pittsburgh community are workforce development, education, and police interaction.

With that information, the next required White House step is holding a summit of area leaders to discuss the best ways to improve policies and services in those three areas. A summit is planned for Friday, Oct. 31, with leaders from ten sectors: Service/Community Centers; Healthcare; Faith-based; Philanthropy; Education; Government; Corporate; Law Enforcement;  Workforce; and Advocacy.

An estimated 100 individuals, including youth leaders, are expected to participate in the summit. Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, Mayor William Peduto, Acting Police Chief Cameron McLay and others in leadership roles throughout every sector listed are scheduled to attend.

The effort is being led by Dr. Curtiss Porter, the city’s Chief Education and Neighborhood Reinvestment Officer, with support from LaTrenda Leonard, Mayor Peduto’s Deputy Chief of Operations and Administration.

“I'm excited about this initiative because we have the opportunity to support and promote the great work that is already happening around young men of color in the city,” Leonard said. “The goal of the summit is to garner the expertise of leaders in this area to develop real sustainable policy recommendations that introduce or expand on existing efforts to better serve the needs of Pittsburgh's young men of color.”

The My Brother’s Keeper summit meeting at the Community College of Allegheny County campus on the North Side is private, but future events will be open to the public.


Friday, October 24, 2014
LaTrenda Leonard Sherrill
Deputy Chief, Operations and Administration
City of Pittsburgh
Cell: 412-807-1760

Timothy McNulty
Communications Director
City of Pittsburgh
Cell: 412-660-1999

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