Pittsburgh Awarded Gateways For Growth Research Award

      Gateways For Growth Logo

Pittsburgh Awarded Gateways For Growth Research Award

Pittsburgh and 8 other local communities join a network of more than 70 localities across 35 states deploying economic research and multi-sector welcoming plans to forward inclusion and economic opportunity for all.

PITTSBURGH — Today, the American Immigration Council (the Council) and Welcoming America selected the City of Pittsburgh to receive a Gateways for Growth (G4G) Research Award as part of the fifth cohort of the initiative. Launched in 2016, G4G is a competitive opportunity for localities to receive research support, technical assistance, and/or matching grant funds from the Council and Welcoming America to improve immigrant inclusion in their communities.

“Pittsburgh’s new neighbors play a vital role in the success of our city,” said Mayor Ed Gainey. “The Gateways for Growth (G4G) Research Award will allow us to maximize the support we can provide our immigrant and refugee communities and help us build a safe, welcoming, and thriving city for all who work, live, and visit Pittsburgh. As one of only nine localities across the U.S. selected for this award, the G4G Research grant will empower our Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA) to implement a data-driven approach to their work. I look forward to sharing the results with the public so we may further highlight the key role of immigrants and refugees in driving growth and economic opportunities.”

The Council and Welcoming America teams support G4G awardee communities in creating a local narrative, backed by data, on the imperative for building inclusive communities and, for those ready to take the next step, to build a community-wide plan for immigrant inclusion supported by multi-sector stakeholders. The Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs (OIRA), founded in 2022, has been working with key stakeholders to build an infrastructure for Pittsburgh’s new neighbors to thrive as reflected in the Welcoming Pittsburgh roadmap. By working with member organizations from Pittsburgh’s Welcoming Communities collaborative and key stakeholders in the City and County, OIRA works every day to create a more welcoming city for all.

Local communities across the country have long understood the positive effects of their growing local immigrant population. Newcomers help drive population growth, revitalize neighborhoods, spur innovation, and enrich communities with cultural diversity. Pittsburgh, as part of the G4G 2023 cohort, is thinking proactively about how to create an environment that sends a message of inclusion and social cohesion, maximizes the contributions of all residents, and gives community members the tools they need to thrive together.

“The precedent set by the Gateways for Growth (G4G) Research Award granted to the City of Pittsburgh, Office of the Mayor is encouraging,” said Sabrina Saunders Mosby, President and CEO of Vibrant Pittsburgh. “As more immigrants and refugees call Pittsburgh home, it is imperative that we have access to accurate data that shows their demographic and socioeconomic contributions to our region. This is an important step in our path towards being a more welcoming and vibrant City for all.”

“It is exciting to know The Gateways for Growth Challenge award will give the City of Pittsburgh a tool to research and learn more about our growing immigrant population, their needs, and to help them expand their growth possibilities.” Brent G. Rondon, MPA, CGBP, Senior Management Consultant for International Trade, University of Pittsburgh SBDC

“Pittsburgh is a city with a proud and strong immigrant history—and an exciting future as new people from around the world become part of our neighborhoods as homeowners, part of the innovation in technology, education, and business development in our city, and part of welcoming other newcomers as we continue to expand and diversify our community,” said  Dana Gold, JFCS Chief Operating Officer (COO). “JFCS is delighted, as a refugee resettlement agency and an organization that serves immigrant needs, to see this research award be granted to Mayor Gainey's administration.”

“We are delighted to see the Gateways for Growth Challenge expand to another set of localities that reflect the diversity of our nation,” said Molly Hilligoss, Network Director at Welcoming America. “With each cohort, there is an opportunity to support and connect local leaders making their communities more welcoming and resilient places where everyone, including immigrants, can prosper and belong.”

“The Gateways for Growth program helps communities quantify what many people already know – that immigrants play a key role in driving innovation and growth,” said Mo Kantner, Director of State and Local Initiatives at the American Immigration Council. “We’re excited to see the network continue to grow to nearly eighty communities, and look forward to supporting localities with data and technical assistance as they work to ensure that all residents are welcome and have pathways to success.”

This year’s awardees, alongside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, include:

  • Brockton, Massachusetts
  • Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • North Shore Region, Massachusetts
  • Ottawa County, Michigan
  • Portland and Southern Region, Maine
  • Santa Clara County, California
  • Santa Fe, New Mexico
  • South Bend and Michiana Region, Indiana

G4G awardees will receive a combination of:

  • Customized quantitative research reports from the Council on the demographic and socioeconomic contributions immigrants make in their communities; and/or
  • Tailored technical assistance from the Council and Welcoming America to support communities as they draft, execute, and communicate a multi-sector immigrant inclusion strategy; and in some cases
  • Matching grant funds from the Council and Welcoming America which, combined with support from a local funder, are used to aid in a community’s strategic planning process.

Year-round, the Council and Welcoming America maintain an interactive map at that serves as a clearinghouse for the successes of all current and prior G4G awardees.

About the American Immigration Council
The American Immigration Council works to strengthen America by shaping how America thinks about and acts towards immigrants and immigration and by working toward a more fair and just immigration system that opens its doors to those in need of protection and unleashes the energy and skills that immigrants bring. The Council brings together problem solvers and employs four coordinated approaches to advance change—litigation, research, legislative and administrative advocacy, and communications. In January 2022, the Council and New American Economy merged to combine a broad suite of advocacy tools to better expand and protect the rights of immigrants, more fully ensure immigrants’ ability to succeed economically, and help make the communities they settle in more welcoming. Follow the latest Council news and information on and Twitter @immcouncil.

Visit to learn more.

About Welcoming America
Welcoming America is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that leads a movement of inclusive communities becoming more prosperous by ensuring everyone belongs. We believe that all people, including immigrants, are valued contributors and vital to the success of our communities and shared future.

Through the Welcoming Network, we work to help communities develop the roadmap they need to create welcoming policies and share new approaches to inclusion to create an environment where everyone can truly thrive. Learn more at                         

G4G contacts
Brianna Dimas
(202) 507-7557

Lola Pak
(470) 236-0129


Save as PDF
Experimental - may have alignment issues.


Maria Montano
Communications Director
Mayor's Office