The 2024 Black Trailblazers

Meet the difference-makers in politics, policy and beyond.

Kadida Kenner, Jamila Winder and Omar Sabir

Kadida Kenner, Jamila Winder and Omar Sabir Jared Gruenwald, Left Eyed Studios

Presented By:
PA Chamber for Black Owned Business

From insurance, finance and real estate to government, lobbying and law, Black Pennsylvanians are shattering glass ceilings and brokering power across a wide range of industries. With honorees including mayors, corporate titans, influential attorneys, award-winning entrepreneurs and media powerhouses, this year’s compilation of 100 Black Trailblazers showcases the range of Black professionals’ expertise and achievements in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Researched and written by Jemille Q. Duncan. Editor’s note: This article was assigned and completed before Duncan was hired by the Parker administration.

Patricia Wilson Aden

President and CEO, Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance
Patricia Wilson Aden / Sabina Louise Pierce

Patricia Wilson Aden has spent her career enriching Black communities. For eight years, Aden was the president and CEO of the African American Museum in Philadelphia, bolstering the Black community’s rich history. From there, she became the president of The Blues Foundation in Tennessee, working to promote the robust contributions of blues music artists. Now, Aden is the president and CEO of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, where she advances Philadelphia’s arts and culture efforts.

Sheila Alexander-Reid

Executive Director, PHL Diversity
Sheila Alexander-Reid / Provided

Sheila Alexander-Reid is executive director of PHL Diversity, a business development division of the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau, where she promotes Philadelphia as an inclusive, welcoming destination for meetings and conventions. Previously, as executive director of the District of Columbia Mayor’s Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning Affairs, she fought for marriage equality and inclusive policies. Alexander-Reid is also the founder of Branding4Change LLC and the Women in the Life Association.

Brenda Allen

President, Lincoln University
Brenda Allen / Provided

As Lincoln University’s 14th president, Brenda Allen has led the school’s efforts to prioritize enhancing academic quality and improving operational effectiveness. She has focused on projects such as curriculum revision, increasing support for faculty teaching and scholarship, expanding co-curricular opportunities and restructuring the administration. Before becoming president, Allen, a Lincoln graduate herself, held various academic and administrative roles at Brown University, Winston Salem State University and Smith College.

David Arthur

Interim Vice President of Public Affairs and Sustainability, PPL Corp.

Since joining PPL in 2009 as their director of federal legislative affairs, David K. Arthur has climbed the ranks, becoming senior director of federal government relations and, later, vice president for federal government relations. Now, Arthur serves as interim vice president of public affairs and sustainability. In this role, he spearheads PPL’s advocacy, communications, policy development and sustainability efforts. He also sits on the steering committee of People for Good Government, PPL’s political action committee. 

April Ashe

Executive Director, Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus
April Ashe / Wendy Haigood

April Ashe, a Harrisburg native, has over 15 years of experience in state government. Prior to becoming the executive director of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus in 2021, Ashe served as a research analyst for the state House of Representatives Committees on Finance and Professional Licensure. Ashe has spent much of her time drafting legislation to advance underserved communities and assisting lawmakers’ staff with leadership and team development. 

Melissa Atkins

Partner, Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP
Melissa Atkins / Jeff Anderson Photography

Melissa Atkins is shattering glass ceilings and paving the way as Obermayer’s first Black female partner. With an unwavering dedication to labor and employment law, Atkins fearlessly advocates for employers in a multitude of spheres. Her expertise encompasses the intricacies of union negotiations, grievance hearings, internal investigations and employment discrimination litigation. Atkins’ portfolio spans diverse landscapes, as she collaborates with municipalities and companies across sectors such as health care, utility companies, information technology, universities, manufacturing and nonprofits.

Donna Bailey

Interim CEO, Community Behavioral Health
Donna Bailey / David Stephenson

Donna Bailey is the interim CEO of the Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services’ Division of Community Behavioral Health in Philadelphia. Before becoming CEO, Bailey served Community Behavioral Health in several roles, including as chief of staff, compliance officer and chief operating officer. Bailey has also worked with PHMC as chief integrated health services officer, the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Health and Opportunity as assistant managing director, and as housing director for the state’s Department of Human Services.

Joel Barnett

Senior Vice President, Director of Commercial Affinity Banking, Fulton Bank

Focused on building relationships with businesses owned by people of color, women and veterans, Joel Barnett serves as Fulton Bank’s senior vice president and director of commercial affinity banking. Barnett joined Fulton Bank in 2022, bringing with him more than 30 years of banking experience. Prior to joining Fulton Bank, Barnett, a Marine Corps veteran, was the senior vice president of PNC Financial Services, where he helped lead business and retail banking.

Craig T. Beazer

Executive Vice President and General Counsel, Lincoln Financial Group

Craig T. Beazer serves as executive vice president and general counsel of the Lincoln Financial Group, where he leads legal, compliance and government relations. Before joining Lincoln, Beazer was executive vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary at Cleveland-based KeyBank. Prior to that, Beazer worked in similar senior executive roles at BNY Mellon and the Bank of America. He now serves on the board of the Minority Corporate Counsel Association and often joins industry events as a panelist. 

Joann Bell

Director of the Philadelphia Office, Pugliese Associates
Joann Bell / Pugliese Associates

Joann Bell is a veteran power broker who leads the Philadelphia office of Pugliese Associates, a renowned lobbying firm with offices in Harrisburg, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. Bell is also a frequent radio commentator, hosting “The Source with the Black Women’s Leadership Council” on WURD Radio. Before joining Pugliese Associates, Bell was the director of the Philadelphia Mayor’s Office of Affirmative Action and the executive director of the Governor’s Advisory Commission on African American Affairs under then-Gov. Robert P. Casey.

Kevin Bethel

Commissioner, Philadelphia Police Department

Kevin Bethel is the recently minted commissioner of the Philadelphia Police Department, the fourth-largest police department in the nation. Having spent over 30 years in public safety, Bethel garnered national recognition for championing juvenile diversion programs. Before becoming commissioner, Bethel was the chief of school safety at the School District of Philadelphia, deputy police commissioner for patrol operations and a Stoneleigh fellow. With Philadelphia in the throes of a gun violence epidemic, Bethel’s leadership as commissioner will be pivotal.

Rochelle Bilal

Sheriff of Philadelphia
Rochelle Bilal / The Office of the Sheriff

Recently elected to a second four-year term as sheriff of Philadelphia, Rochelle Bilal is the first woman ever elected to serve in this top law enforcement position. Under Bilal’s leadership, the Sheriff’s Office has spearheaded efforts like providing free gun locks to help combat gun violence in the city. Before becoming sheriff, Bilal, a 27-year veteran of the Philadelphia Police Department, worked in a joint task force with the FBI and DEA and in units tackling sex crimes and drug trafficking. 

Robert Bogle

CEO and President, The Philadelphia Tribune

Since 1989, Robert Bogle has served as the CEO of The Philadelphia Tribune. Before taking the reins at the Tribune, Bogle was the newspaper’s advertising director, marketing director, executive vice president and treasurer. Under his leadership, the Tribune continues to operate as the nation’s oldest and the region’s largest African American-serving newspaper. Bogle has served on the boards of The Fund for the School District of Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association, among others.

Ryan Boyer

Business Manager, Philadelphia Building Trades Council; Laborers District Council of Philadelphia
Ryan Boyer / LiUNA

Called the city’s “biggest power broker” by Philadelphia Magazine, Ryan Boyer heads the Philadelphia Building and Construction Trades Council as well as the Laborers District Council, two of the most powerful unions in the City of Brotherly Love. A longtime supporter of Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker, Boyer, who became the chair of Parker’s transition committee, was integral to her successful bid for the top job. A respected political heavyweight, Boyer’s growing influence continues to make him one to watch.

Malik Brown

President and CEO, Graduate! Philadelphia
Malik Brown / Matthew Smith, Graduate Philadelphia

Malik Brown has been at the helm of Graduate Philadelphia since 2021. He leads the organization in its work to increase the Philadelphia region’s degree completion and workforce development graduate numbers through partnerships with businesses, government entities, social service providers and other stakeholders. Before joining Graduate Philadelphia, Brown has served in senior roles at Diversified Community Services, Pierce College and the Graduate Network.  

Gerald Bruce

CEO, Virpax Pharmaceuticals

Gerald Bruce is the CEO of Virpax Pharmaceuticals, which focuses on creating non-addictive products to treat and manage pain, post-traumatic stress disorder, central nervous system disorders and viral barrier indications. With over 30 years in the pharmaceutical and medical nutrition industries, Bruce previously served as vice president of sales for Danone Specialized Nutrition in North America, as well as in various roles at Nitromed Inc., Bristol-Meyers Squibb, and Johnson and Johnson.

James Burnett

Executive Director, VestedIn

James Burnett, executive director of VestedIN, formerly West Philadelphia Financial Services Institution, has spent over 30 years in the financial services industry. He started his career in 1988 at Fidelity Bank and joined VestedIN in 1999, beginning his work in community economic development. In addition to his work in finance, Burnett has taught as an adjunct professor at Thomas Jefferson University in the School of Sustainable Design.

Tarik Casteel

President, TLC Construction
Tarik Casteel / Provided

Since he founded it in 2008, Tarik Casteel has been the president of TLC Construction and Renovations, which provides a range of contracting services from door installations to metal stud framing. Casteel also runs a sister nonprofit of TLC Construction and Renovations called TLC Work-Based Training, which focuses on uplifting the next generation by offering trainees formal classroom instruction and on-the-job training in building and construction trades.

Morgan Cephas

State Representative
Morgan Cephas / Chelsea Cox, C2Consulting Services

Morgan Cephas, first elected to serve the 192nd House District in 2016, represents parts of West Philadelphia and chairs the state House Committee on Government Oversight. She’s also a member of the House Committees on Appropriations, Consumer Protection, Technology & Utilities, Housing & Community Development, and Insurance, among other committees. Since becoming a state representative, Cephas has introduced legislation to address maternal mortality, expand financial relief for child care expenses and bring dignity to incarcerated women.

Karen Coleman

President and CEO, Tabor Services
Karen Coleman / Amanda So, Tabor Services

Since 2021, Karen Coleman, a seasoned social welfare advocate and business leader, has led Tabor Services in its efforts to provide stability and support to children and families. Before becoming CEO of Tabor Services, Coleman served as a community umbrella agency director and, later, chief operating officer. In every role Coleman has taken on, she has prioritized enhancing operational efficiency to provide high-quality services to the children and families under their care.

Austin Davis

Lieutenant Governor
Austin Davis / Commonwealth Media Services

The first Black lieutenant governor in the commonwealth’s history, Austin Davis, is next in line to the most powerful office in state government. No stranger to firsts, Davis began his tenure in elected office in 2018 as the first Black state representative from House District 35. Second in command to the governor, Davis is charged with presiding over the state Senate, leading the Pennsylvania Board of Pardons and chairing the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Council, among other commissions.

Gregory Deavens

President and CEO, Independence Health Group
Gregory Deavens / Independence Blue Cross

When he was named CEO of Independence Health Group in 2021, Gregory Deavens became the first Black leader of the health insurer. Before assuming the role, he served as executive vice president, chief financial officer and treasurer for the organization. Deavens has previously held roles at MassMutual’s U.S. Insurance Group, New York Life Insurance Company, Cigna, GE Capital and PriceWaterhouse. He is also a member of Hartford HealthCare’s board of directors.

Timothy DeFoor

State Auditor General
Timothy DeFoor / Commonwealth Media Services

When he successfully ran for auditor general in 2020, Timothy DeFoor became the first person of color to win a statewide office in Pennsylvania. As the chief financial watchdog of the commonwealth, DeFoor ensures the proper expenditure of state funds. Before becoming auditor general, he was the Dauphin County controller, during which time he restructured the county’s financial reporting. DeFoor recently announced his intent to run for reelection – a race to watch in 2024. 

David Dix & Marcia Perry Dix

Founders and CEOs, Luminous Strategies; Perry Media Group

A frequent commentator on 6ABC’s “Inside Story,” David Dix, a political consultant, leads Luminous Strategies, which provides government affairs and public relations services. The firm, which he founded in 2010, has a client portfolio that has included Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign, the Delaware River Port Authority, Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign, the Lenfest Foundation and the NFL Players Association.

Marcia Perry Dix, vice president of public relations and advertising at Luminous Strategies and founder of the Perry Media Group, has spent her career at the crossroads of government and community. Celebrating her 30th anniversary in marketing and media, she provides her skills and expertise to Hampton University, Google, Jefferson Health, Aetna, Montgomery County and the City of Pittsburgh, to name a few. Together, the couple recently founded the PA Chamber for Black Owned Business.

Gladys Brown Dutrieuille

Of Counsel, Stevens & Lee
Gladys Brown Dutrieuille / Provided

Gladys Brown Dutrieuille is of counsel at Stevens & Lee, a full-service law firm. Before joining Stevens & Lee, Dutrieuille was a dedicated public servant. In the state Senate, she was deputy chief counsel for the Senate Democratic leader, becoming known for her public utilities and energy expertise. After leaving the chamber, where she served for 22 years, Dutrieuille became a commissioner on the PA Public Utility Commission, shaping the commonwealth’s public utility landscape for over a decade.

Dwight Evans

U.S. Representative
Dwight Evans / House Creative Services

Dwight Evans was first elected to the Pennsylvania General Assembly in 1980 to represent the 203rd House District, served 20 years as the first African American chair of the House Appropriations Committee, and was reelected 18 times by his constituents until he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2016. Evans’ work in Congress includes advocacy for stronger gun safety laws, affordable housing and health care like the new $35 per month insulin cost cap in Medicare, and expanding tax credits for working families. He has continued to move up in seniority on the influential House Ways and Means Committee, which oversees taxes, trade, Social Security and Medicare.

Marianne Fray

CEO and President, Maternity Care Coalition

Marianne Fray is the president and CEO of the Maternity Care Coalition, an organization with a mission to improve the health and well-being of families while enhancing school readiness for children up to 3 years old. Since becoming CEO, Fray has overseen a nearly 40% increase in revenue, successfully leading the organization through the COVID-19 pandemic and social unrest. She has also prioritized pay equity to ensure all staff salaries are aligned with market rates. Fray serves on the boards of Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children and the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofits.

Dawn Frisby Byers

Senior Director of Content and Engagement, PA Humanities
Dawn Frisby Byers / Happy Hour Photos

Dawn Frisby Byers is the senior director of content and engagement at PA Humanities, where she oversees all programs and communications statewide. A longtime professional in brand development, strategic partnerships and marketing, Frisby Byers’ career has taken her from New York City to Philadelphia, with positions at Bravo TV, PBS, The Apollo Theater, the Grammys and the Kimmel Center. Frisby Byers also chairs the board of directors for the Philadelphia Cultural Fund and serves on the board of CultureWorks.

Edward C. Gainey

Pittsburgh Mayor
Edward C. Gainey / Happy Hour Photos

Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey began his service in elected office as a state representative from the 24th House District, a position he held from 2013 to 2022. Now at the helm of the Steel City, Gainey is focusing on improving Pittsburgh’s infrastructure, safety and digital parity, spearheading the creation of the Pittsburgh Plan for Peace, the Pittsburgh Digital Equity Coalition and the Bridge Asset Management Program.

Ernest Garrett

President, AFSCME DC 33

In 2020, Ernest Garrett became the president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees DC 33, a 10,000-member union. Because of its membership, AFSCME DC 33 is one of the most sought-after labor unions during election seasons. As leader of the powerful organization, Garrett plays a key role in advancing the interests of his many members in budget negotiations and labor disputes.

Donald Generals

President, Community College of Philadelphia
Donald Generals / Elizabeth Field

The sixth president of the Community College of Philadelphia, Donald Generals, first assumed office in 2014. The head of the City of Brotherly Love’s only public institution of higher learning, he leads the college’s efforts to educate its diverse student population. Generals has spent his career in academia, previously serving as vice president for academic affairs at Mercer County Community College, provost at the Katharine Gibbs Schools in New York City and similar senior administrative and academic roles.

Katherine Gilmore Richardson

Majority Leader, Philadelphia City Council
Katherine Gilmore Richardson / Philadelphia City Council

In 2024, Katherine Gilmore Richardson made history by becoming the youngest elected majority leader of the Philadelphia City Council. In 2019, she shattered glass ceilings following her historic election when she became the youngest Black woman ever elected to the Philadelphia City Council. During her short time in office, Gilmore Richardson has secured over $34 million in funding to advance workforce development opportunities and championed legislation uplifting working parents, protecting Philadelphia’s fiscal stability and ensuring environmental justice.

Vince Gordon

Founder and CEO, Gordon Policy Group
Vince Gordon / Gordon Policy Group

Vince Gordon is the founder and CEO of the Gordon Policy Group, a management consulting firm focused on health care policy and business strategy – as well as building relationships between providers, insurance companies and community-based organizations. Gordon’s public service has included roles as deputy secretary of the state Department of Human Services, president of the Upper Darby Board of School Directors and a Cheyney University trustee.

Larry Hailsham

Executive Deputy Chief of Staff, Office of the Governor
Larry Hailsham / Johnny Palmadessa

An experienced political operative, Larry Hailsham serves as executive deputy chief of staff to Gov. Josh Shapiro. Before serving in the office of the commonwealth’s chief executive, Hailsham worked for an array of Pennsylvania politicians, including U.S. Sen. Bob Casey and former state Rep. Jake Wheatley, as well as influential organizations like the Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce. Notably, Hailsham also served as the Pennsylvania political director for President Joe Biden’s successful 2020 presidential bid.

Sinceré Harris

Chief Deputy Mayor of Intergovernmental Affairs, Sustainability and Engagement, City of Philadelphia
Sinceré Harris / Provided

Sinceré Harris, part of Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker’s brain trust, serves the city as its chief deputy mayor of intergovernmental affairs, sustainability and engagement. Harris previously worked in the Biden White House as associate director for intergovernmental affairs, climate and environment, a role she left to lead Parker’s successful mayoral campaign. Harris, a widely respected political strategist, was also executive director of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party and assistant deputy secretary of legislative affairs for then-Gov. Tom Wolf.

Jordan Harris

State House Appropriations Committee Chair
Jordan Harris / PA House Democratic Caucus

State Rep. Jordan Harris is the chair of the Pennsylvania House Appropriations Committee, where he is tasked with leading budget negotiations for House Democrats. Taking on the state’s infrastructural challenges, Harris recently announced $175 million in state appropriations to fix old school buildings. A fervent criminal justice advocate, Harris was a key player in the passage of Clean Slate and probation reform legislation. 

Joseph Hill

Senior Principal, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies
Joseph Hill / Cozen O’Connor

Joseph Hill is a longtime political strategist who, since 2019, has been a senior principal at Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies, leading the firm’s government relations and public advocacy efforts in Southeastern Pennsylvania. Hill first entered the political arena in U.S. Sen. Bob Casey’s office, where he started out as a legislative fellow.  He later became the director of public participation for the DNC and the deputy campaign manager and political director for then-Gov. Tom Wolf’s 2018 reelection campaign. 

Diane Holmes

President, Heart of a Legend
Diane Holmes / Valerie Geiger

Heart of a Legend, co-founded by Diane Holmes and her husband, former world heavyweight boxing champion Larry Holmes, is a philanthropic nonprofit dedicated to uplifting vulnerable populations. Since 2015, Diane Holmes, the organization’s president, has overseen initiatives to support the National Pediatric Cancer Foundation and the American Diabetes Association. Heart of a Legend, which is headquartered in the hometown of the man once known as the “Easton Assassin” in the sweet science, also awards educational honors and hosts community giveaways to inspire local youth.

Gary Horton

President, Urban Erie CDC
Gary Horton / Jack Hanrahan, Erie Times-News

Gary Horton, a longtime community activist and public servant, is the president of the Urban Erie Community Development Corporation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to bolstering the social mobility of residents. He also advocates for equity, political agency and social inclusion as president of the Erie Branch of the NAACP. Horton has previously served as a member of the Erie Board of Education and as a special assistant to the mayor of Erie.

Vincent Hughes

Minority Chair, State Senate Appropriations Committee
Vincent Hughes / PA Senate Democratic Caucus

Vincent Hughes, a state senator representing parts of Philadelphia and Montgomery counties, has served in the Pennsylvania General Assembly for over 30 years – he was a member of the state House of Representatives for the 190th District from 1987 to 1994, when he moved to the Senate to represent its 7th District. 

The Democratic chair of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee, Hughes is a longtime Democratic rainmaker, recently securing $7.5 million for stormwater infrastructure improvements in Conshohocken, Whitemarsh Township and Philadelphia. Hughes is also the husband of Emmy Award-winning actress Sheryl Lee Ralph.

C. Frank Igwe

President, Moravia Health
C. Frank Igwe / Provided

C. Frank Igwe has been the president of Moravia Health for over a decade, leading the full-service home care agency in serving over 2,500 patients. Before becoming president of Moravia Health, Igwe was the executive director of City ACES, a nonprofit dedicated to engaging underserved youth. Igwe has also served in academic roles at the University of Pennsylvania, his alma mater, and Penn State University.

Marc Jenkins

Regional Managing Director, PNC Bank
Marc Jenkins / Provided

Marc Jenkins, a banking veteran with over 30 years of experience, is the regional managing director of PNC Bank for Greater Pennsylvania. Jenkins started as the wealth director for Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey and later became the market leader for Southern Pennsylvania and Delaware. Jenkins previously held several senior finance roles at Wells Fargo, Bryn Mawr Trust and Ernst & Young.

Glynis Johns

Founder and CEO, Black Scranton Project
Glynis Johns / Jbaby Photo

Glynis Johns is the founder of the Black Scranton Project, a 501(c)3 nonprofit focused on local heritage and public history. As the leader of the Black Scranton Project, Johns dedicates herself to archiving and celebrating the Black history of Scranton. In addition to leading the Black Scranton Project, Johns has served as a member of then-Gov. Tom Wolf’s Advisory Commission on African American Affairs, the Scranton Public Library Board of Trustees and the Lackawanna County Council on Art, Culture and Education.

Kenyatta Johnson

Philadelphia City Council President
Kenyatta Johnson / provided

A Philadelphia city councilmember representing parts of Center City, South and Southwest Philadelphia since 2012, Kenyatta Johnson recently secured his third term and kicked it off with a successful bid for council president. Before joining the city’s legislative body, Johnson represented the 186th House District as a state representative. As president of City Council, Johnson is well-positioned to help shape the future of the birthplace of America for years to come.

Jamal Jones

Program Manager, Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship at Harrisburg University
Jamal Jones / Jason Minick, Minick Photography

Jamal Jones has over 20 years of experience as a leader and service provider specializing in resource development for diverse and underrepresented constituencies. Currently the program manager of the Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology, Jones advises, develops and implements programming for early-stage companies. Jones was previously the director of business development and LERTA administrator for the City of Harrisburg, where he supported new and existing businesses with job retention and growth, as well as financial incentives.

Jerry Jordan

President, Philadelphia Federation of Teachers
Jerry Jordan / Philadelphia Federation of Teachers

Jerry Jordan has led the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers for decades. The PFT is a power broker in Philadelphia politics – including last year’s Philadelphia mayoral election. Jordan has spent much of his career at the PFT, starting as a district staff representative and later becoming an executive board legislative representative and vice president of the union. 

Michael Joynes

Vice President of Government and Community Relations, Philadelphia Works
Michael Joynes / Phillip Martin Regusters

Equipped with a wide range of connections and experience, Michael Joynes serves as vice president of government and community relations at Philadelphia Works. Some of his most notable work has been on Pennsylvania Regional Centers, PA Employment, Advancement, and Retention Network centers, and PA CareerLink centers. With over 30 years in the workforce development field, Joynes has built a reputation for the breadth of his relationships with local, state and federal officials, which he leverages to advance workforce development. 

Kadida Kenner

CEO, New Pennsylvania Project
Kadida Kenner / Neil Kohl

Kadida Kenner is the founding CEO of the New Pennsylvania Project, advocating for protecting voting rights, raising the minimum wage, fair education funding, and canceling student debt, among other causes. Kenner also co-chairs Why Courts Matter, a Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center project that educates Pennsylvanians about the role of the federal and state judiciaries. Central to Kenner’s advocacy is highlighting the importance of a healthy and thriving electorate.

Malcolm Kenyatta

State Representative
Malcolm Kenyatta / Quinn Brown

A key supporter of President Joe Biden, state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta has quickly become known for his fiery oratory, which often lands him in the news. Biden has appointed Kenyatta, a third-generation Philadelphian, to chair the Presidential Advisory Commission on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence and Economic Opportunity for Black Americans. Kenyatta, also a candidate for auditor general, recently secured the Pennsylvania Democratic Party’s endorsement, pushing him closer toward becoming the commonwealth’s chief financial watchdog.

Timika Lane

Judge, Pennsylvania Superior Court

Timika Lane recently became the second Black female judge of the Pennsylvania Superior Court. Before securing that post, she was a judge on the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. Lane, a former teacher, pursued a career in public service before joining the courts. She was also a major trial attorney at the Defender Association of Philadelphia, representing indigent adults and juveniles. Lane later became state Sen. Anthony H. Williams’ chief legal counsel and the Democratic executive director of the Senate’s State Government Committee.

Congratulations to Chad Dion Lassiter for being recognized in the PA Black Trailblazers list.

Chad Dion Lassiter

Executive Director, Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission
Chad Dion Lassiter / Commonwealth Media Services

The executive director of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, Chad Dion Lassiter, is a respected academic and scholar of American race relations. In addition to leading the state’s discrimination watchdog, Lassiter has been a professor at West Chester University and the University of Pennsylvania, where he co-founded The Black Men at Penn School of Social Work Inc. organization. He also serves on the Presidential Advisory Commission on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence and Economic Opportunity for Black Americans.

Keith Leaphart

Enterprise Executive Vice President and Humana Chief Health Equity and Community Impact Officer, Jefferson Health
Keith Leaphart / Whitney Thomas

Recently named to oversee Thomas Jefferson University, Jefferson Health and Jefferson Health Plans, Keith Leaphart serves as enterprise executive vice president and Humana chief health equity and community impact officer. Leaphart, a respected entrepreneur and physician, is also a commissioner on the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission and the founder of Philanthropi, which works to democratize and maximize donor engagement and impact.

Summer Lee

U.S. Representative
Summer Lee / Courtesy of the Summer Lee for Congress campaign

Representing the state’s 12th District in the U.S. House of Representatives, Summer Lee has solidified her place at the forefront of progressive politics. Lee’s progressive streak has been on display since she first entered elected office in 2019 as a state representative from Allegheny County. Before becoming a legislator, Lee was an organizer and lawyer advocating for an increased minimum wage and union rights for fast food workers.

Michael Lloyd

President and CEO, IMC Construction
Mike Lloyd / IMC Construction

Michael Lloyd first joined IMC Construction as general counsel in 2017. He rose through the ranks, including as executive vice president and COO before becoming the president and CEO of the company, a role he assumed last year. Lloyd is active on the boards of Community Volunteers in Medicine and Peter’s Place: A Center For Grieving Children and Families. He has also served as counsel for companies like Uber and Chevron.

Sara Lomax

President and CEO, WURD Radio
Sara Lomax / Zamani Feelings

Sara Lomax is a veteran award-winning journalist and CEO and president of WURD Radio, Pennsylvania’s only Black-owned talk radio station. Under her leadership, WURD Radio has grown as a multimedia communications company providing original programming online and through community events. In 2021, Lomax co-founded URL Media, a coalition of Black and brown-owned media outlets that share revenue resources, content, sponsorships and a bustling network of media professionals.

Teresa M. Lundy

Principal and Founder, TML Communications
Teresa M. Lundy / TML Communications

Teresa M. Lundy is the principal and founder of TML Communications, a strategic public relations, crisis communications and community engagement firm. The firm has served clients nationwide, including DoorDash, the Philadelphia Sheriff’s Office, Zipcar, Lyft, Temple University and the Laborers International Union of North America Local 57. TML Communications received recognition in the Congressional Record for the 117th Congress, as well as the Inspiring Excellence Award from the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce.

Shawn K. Lytle

Head of Equities and Multi-Asset, Macquarie Asset Management
Shawn K. Lytle / Macquarie Asset Management

Shawn Lytle is the head of asset management equities and multi-asset for Macquarie Asset Management, at the helm of investment teams and strategies for the business’ clients. Lytle is also head of Americas for the Macquarie Group. Over the course of his 30-year career, Lytle has worked at J.P. Morgan Asset Management and UBS Asset Management. In addition to his work in asset management, Lytle is a board member of The Opportunity Network and Investment Company Institute.

Dennis R. Maple

Chair and CEO, Goddard Systems
Dennis R. Maple / Goddard Systems, LLC

Dennis R. Maple, a senior management professional with a career spanning over 40 years, serves as chair and CEO of Goddard Systems LLC, a renowned child care franchise with locations across the United States. Before joining Goddard Systems, Maple was the president of First Student and Aramark Education. Prior to those positions, Maple worked in various roles at the Coors Brewing Company, Kraft Heinz, PepsiCo and Quaker.

Lorina Marshall-Blake

President, Independence Blue Cross Foundation
Lorina Marshall-Blake / Independence Blue Cross

As president of the Independence Blue Cross Foundation, Lorina Marshall-Blake spearheads the efforts to improve the health and well-being of underserved communities across Southeastern Pennsylvania. Since 2011, when Marshall-Blake founded the Independence Blue Cross Foundation, the foundation has awarded upward of $70 million in grants to local nonprofits addressing health disparities. Because of Marshall-Blake’s decades-long advocacy, the foundation has earned its place as a local philanthropic powerhouse.

Sharmain Matlock-Turner

CEO, Urban Affairs Coalition
Sharmain Matlock-Turner / Karim Muhammad

Sharmain Matlock-Turner is the longtime CEO of the Urban Affairs Coalition, spearheading the organization’s work at the intersection of community, government and business to build urban wealth and strengthen local economies. Since 1999, Matlock-Turner has led the Urban Affairs Coalition as its first female CEO. In addition to her work with the coalition, she serves on several boards and committees, including the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia Board of Directors, where she was recently renamed deputy chair.

Joanna McClinton

Speaker, Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Joanna McClinton / Pennsylvania House Democratic Caucus

Joanna McClinton, the first female speaker of the state House of Representatives, has served the 191st District since 2015. Known for her rousing oratory and political acumen, McClinton has quickly become a political force. In her short time as speaker, McClinton, a West Philadelphia native and former public defender, has already secured a score of legislative victories. From probation reform and expanded Clean Slate laws to broadened police recruitment and addressing maternal mortality, McClinton continues to be a power broker to watch. 

Desmond McKinson

Executive Director, PA Crime Prevention Caucus, Pennsylvania State Senate
Desmond McKinson / Semaj Nelson

Desmond McKinson is the executive director of the PA Crime Prevention Caucus, as well as communications director and criminal justice policy director in the office of state Sen. Sharif Street. A former appointee on the lieutenant governor’s Pardons Advisory Board, McKinson is a criminal justice reform advocate who authored auto expungement of full pardons. He represents Street at the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing and has successfully ushered constituents through the pardon process. McKinson is also the chair of the Philadelphia NAACP’s Criminal Justice Committee.

Ariel Meadows

Senior Credit Analyst, Bridgeway Capital
Ariel Meadows / Sean Carroll Photographs

Ariel Meadows is a senior credit analyst at Bridgeway Capital, a nonprofit. Meadows focuses on advancing small business and community development loans as an underwriter, promoting economic growth in low-to-moderate-income areas in western Pennsylvania’s tri-state region. She has been dedicated to reducing the racial wealth gap through community wealth-building strategies. Recognizing the importance of mentorship, Meadows is also active in programs like Strong Women Strong Girls.

Angela Mike

Executive Director, Career and Technical Education Division, Pittsburgh Public Schools
Angela Mike / Provided

An educator with a career spanning over two decades, Angela Mike is the executive director of the Career and Technical Education Division of the Pittsburgh Public School District. Mike oversees 21 CTE programs and high school and middle school career exploration courses. While she is focused on broadening the horizons of the next generation, Mike is also a member of the Academic Cabinet.

Khari Mosely

Pittsburgh City Councilmember
Khari Mosely / Mosley for City Council Campaign

A recently elected Pittsburgh City Councilmember representing the 9th Council District, Khari Mosely has spent a significant portion of his career engaging in political advocacy. As a consultant, his clients have included members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly and candidates for the state Supreme Court, county controller and City Council. In addition to political consulting, Mosely championed environmental and labor issues while serving as the state director of the BlueGreen Alliance, a coalition of labor unions and environmental organizations.

Khalid Mumin

Pennsylvania Secretary of Education
Khalid Mumin / Commonwealth Media Services

In 2023, Khalid Mumin became the secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Mumin previously served as superintendent of the Lower Merion School District, Reading School District and Caroline County Public Schools. While heading the Reading School District, Mumin was named Pennsylvania Superintendent of the Year. As secretary of education, Mumin leads the commonwealth’s entire education apparatus, including 500 public school districts and more than 170 public charter schools. 

Napoleon Nelson

Chair, Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus
Napoleon Nelson / House Democratic Caucus

Founded in 1973, the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus was formed to empower Black legislators. Napoleon Nelson, a Montgomery County state representative from the 154th House District, recently picked up the torch as the new chair of the caucus. He also founded and heads the Emerging Technologies Caucus. On top of leading these caucuses, Nelson sits on the House Committees on Appropriations, Children and Youth, as well as Education.

Michael Newmuis

Head of Impact, FS Investments
Michael Newmuis / Jared Gruenwald, Left Eyed Studios

As head of impact at global asset management firm FS Investments, Michael Newmuis oversees philanthropic and civic engagement initiatives, bringing over 15 years of experience in community relations, public affairs, economic development and public-private partnerships. Before joining FS Investments, Newmuis, also executive director of the FS Foundation, served as chief external affairs officer and director of stakeholder engagement and community affairs at Visit Philadelphia. 

Tina Nixon

Vice President of Mission Effectiveness and Chief Diversity Officer, UPMC
Tina Nixon / Marc Faubel

As vice president of mission effectiveness and chief diversity officer at UPMC Central PA, Tina Nixon ensures that all business and clinical programs and services are delivered efficiently and with equity and inclusion across their seven-hospital system. Nixon, the former CEO of the YWCA of Greater Harrisburg, recently launched her bid for the 103rd House District seat, seeking to represent parts of Dauphin and Cumberland counties.

Salewa Ogunmefun

Executive Director, Pennsylvania Voice
Salewa Ogunmefun / Jose Mazariegos Photography

Salewa Ogunmefun is the executive director of Pennsylvania Voice, overseeing all its operations. The organization works to expand democracy and protect voting freedoms in Pennsylvania and has been successful in its advocacy on voter registration, the census and racial equity in redistricting. Ogunmefun, who joined Pennsylvania Voice in 2020 after running nationwide civic engagement and electoral campaigns, is most proud to have been a part of the campaign to win Fair Workweek legislation in Philadelphia, a significant labor reform benefiting over 130,000 Philadelphia workers.

Ernest Owens

President, Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists
Ernest Owens / Ronald Gray

Ernest Owens is an award-winning journalist, author of “The Case for Cancel Culture,” and CEO of Ernest Media Empire LLC. He is also the editor of Eater Philly, political writer at large for Philadelphia Magazine, and holds leadership roles with the Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists and the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. A leader of contemporary entrepreneurial journalism, Owens executive produces and hosts the podcast “Ernestly Speaking!” and WURD Radio’s “Philadelphia City Council Live.”

Cherelle L. Parker

Philadelphia Mayor
Cherelle L. Parker / Provided

Armed with a vision and an authenticity that clearly resonated with Philadelphia voters, Cherelle L. Parker successfully ran to become the 100th mayor of the City of Philadelphia, the first woman to hold the office. Once inaugurated, Parker hit the ground running, signing three executive orders – one of which declared a public safety emergency. Parker’s leadership will determine the sixth-largest American city’s future, a tall order that Parker is approaching head-on.

Jalila Parker

Deputy CEO, Delaware River Port Authority
Jalila Parker / DRPA

Jalila Parker serves as deputy CEO of the Delaware River Port Authority – responsible for stewarding the Ben Franklin, Walt Whitman, Commodore Barry and Betsy Ross bridges. Before coming to the DRPA, Parker was then-Gov. Tom Wolf’s deputy chief of staff and, before that, an aide to state Sen. Art Haywood, then-Philadelphia City Councilwoman Marian Tasco, U.S. Rep. Dwight Evans and then-state Rep. Cherelle Parker.

Michael Pearson

President and CEO, Public Health Management Corp.
Michael Pearson / PHMC

Michael Pearson is the CEO and president of Public Health Management Corp. As leader of PHMC, Pearson heads the nonprofit’s work in building healthier communities through partnerships with government, foundations, businesses and community-based organizations. Before becoming its president and CEO, Pearson served on PHMC’s board of directors starting in 2011 and held roles ranging from treasurer to board chair. Specializing in business strategy, Pearson founded his own consulting firm, Michael K. Pearson Consulting.

Kenneth Penn

President, Benchmark Real Estate Partners

Since 2017, Kenneth Penn has served as president of the Benchmark Construction Group Inc. Penn, over the course of his 40-year career, has worked in real estate construction lending, spearheading $500 million in real estate projects. Penn serves on the board of directors for the African American Chamber of Commerce of PA, NJ & DE and the Builders Industry Association.

Marcel Pratt

Managing Partner, Ballard Spahr
Marcel Pratt / Ballard Spahr

In 2018, Marcel Pratt became the youngest-ever city solicitor of Philadelphia. During his tenure, Pratt led a team of over 300 lawyers, providing legal counsel to city officials at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. He also defended the Philadelphia Beverage Tax in the state Supreme Court and served as trial counsel in the city’s successful sanctuary cities litigation. Pratt now heads the Philadelphia office of Ballard Spahr – one of the city’s largest law firms – as managing partner.

Sulaiman W. Rahman

CEO, DiverseForce
Sulaiman W. Rahman / P4 Hub

Sulaiman W. Rahman is the founder and CEO of DiverseForce, a human capital solutions firm specializing in helping organizations recruit, retain and develop top diverse talent. DiverseForce has emerged as a leading player in the social impact sector, offering solutions such as nonprofit board training and matching services. In addition to continuing to improve and expand on recruitment methods, Rahman serves as the board chair of Mastery Schools.

Sheryl Lee Ralph

Sheryl Lee Ralph / Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images for iHeartRadio

Sheryl Lee Ralph has graced a plethora of stages: the hit sitcom “Abbott Elementary,” the original “Dreamgirls” Broadway musical, the classic film “Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit,” and, most recently, the inauguration of Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker – she introduced Parker with a stirring, heartfelt poem at the North Philadelphia ceremony. An Emmy Award-winning actress and the wife of state Sen. Vincent Hughes, Ralph has long advocated for AIDS awareness and prevention through her nonprofit, the DIVA Foundation, which she founded in 1990.  

Mustafa Rashed

President and CEO, Bellevue Strategies

No stranger to halls of power – from Philadelphia City Hall to the state Capitol – Mustafa Rashed is one of the most respected political players in the commonwealth. For over a decade, Rashed, a Navy veteran, has led the Philadelphia-based political consulting firm Bellevue Strategies as president and CEO. Rashed is also active on the board of directors of PA 30 Day Fund, Children First and The Leadership Studio.

Gregory Reaves & Leslie Smallwood-Lewis

Co-Founders, Mosaic Development Partners

Gregory Reaves and Leslie Smallwood-Lewis serve as CEO and COO, respectively, of Mosaic Development Partners, which they co-founded in 2008. Mosaic, based in Philadelphia, is a minority-certified commercial real estate development company focused on supporting and growing communities. Before co-founding Mosaic, Reaves was vice president of communications and policy at Merck and Smallwood-Lewis was senior vice president of development at the Goldenberg Group, as well as a civil defense attorney.

Heather Moore Roberson

Dean of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Allegheny College
Heather Moore Roberson / Allegheny College

As Allegheny College’s dean of diversity, equity and inclusion, Heather Moore Roberson spearheads the college’s efforts to ensure every student receives a quality and equitable education. An associate professor of community and justice studies and Black studies, Roberson has spent her career educating and inspiring the next generation. In 2020, Roberson was the recipient of the Thoburn Award for Teaching Excellence, signifying her contributions to academia.

Yvonne Roberts

Director, Philadelphia Office, Triad Strategies
Yvonne Roberts / Source Creative House

Yvonne Roberts leads Triad Strategies’ government affairs and advocacy work in Philadelphia. Roberts, an experienced lobbyist, has worked with local and state lawmakers for over 30 years. During her career, her clientele list has included Rite Aid, Procter & Gamble, the National Association of Black-Owned Broadcasters, the African American Historical and Cultural Museum of Philadelphia and Sony Music Entertainment.

Frank Robinson

Vice President, Econsult Solutions

Frank Robinson is the vice president of Econsult Solutions. Throughout his 20-plus years of leadership in the economic development and sustainable development industries, he has managed over $40 million in federal grants. He’s also amassed a diverse portfolio of clients from government entities to nonprofits, banks and small businesses. Before joining Econsult, Robinson was managing partner at the Kairos Development Group.

Omar Sabir

Chair, Philadelphia City Commissioners
Omar Sabir / Whitney Thomas

As the chair of the Philadelphia County Commissioners, Omar Sabir leads the three-member board that oversees Philadelphia’s elections and voter registration efforts. Sabir, who was first elected as a city commissioner in 2019, has been diligent about emphasizing the importance of voting in Philadelphia. Before becoming a city commissioner, Sabir was an aide to state Sen. Vincent Hughes and held senior roles at the Nathaniel Sabir Memorial Scholarship Fund and the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania.

Danitra Sherman

Deputy Advocacy and Policy Director, ACLU Pennsylvania
Danitra Sherman / J. Barnes

Joining the ACLU of Pennsylvania in 2019, Danitra Sherman serves as deputy director of advocacy and policy, where she plays a vital role in advancing the organization’s mission to protect and defend civil rights and liberties. Before coming to the ACLU, Sherman was the state field director for Planned Parenthood Pennsylvania Advocates and PAC, leading organizing, advocacy and electoral work. Sherman is also the chair of the board of directors for the Girls Justice League.

Chaudron Carter Short

Chief Nursing Executive, Temple Health
Chaudron Carter Short / Temple Health

Chaudron Carter Short, the chief nursing executive of the Temple University Health System, has spent over 20 years in senior medical and academic roles, working primarily in underserved communities across Philadelphia and New Jersey. Throughout her career, Short has been a professor at universities including La Salle, Saint Joseph’s and Temple. She also serves on the boards of the Healthcare Improvement Foundation and the Southeastern Pennsylvania Organization of Nurse Leaders.

Claudius Sokenu

Executive Vice President; Chief Legal, Compliance and Regulatory Officer; and Corporate Secretary, Avantor

Claudius Sokenu, the executive vice president who holds numerous roles at Avantor, has been called one of the most influential Black corporate executives in America by Savoy magazine. Before joining Avantor, a biotechnology company, Sokenu was general counsel at Unisys, which provides global technology solutions. Sokenu has served in senior legal roles at Cognizant, Andeavor, Shearman & Sterling, Arnold & Porter Mayer Brown, and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Tiffanie Stanard

Founder and CEO, Stimulus
Tiffanie Stanard / Provided

An award-winning entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience, Tiffanie Stanard is the founder and CEO of Stimulus, a 21st-century vendor management company that employs artificial intelligence. Founded in 2016, Stimulus has enjoyed great success, having garnered the investment of companies like Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, Juno Capital and Genius Guild. Stanard, a wearer of many hats, has also hosted and produced Radio One’s “Philly Speaks.”

Sharif Street

Pennsylvania Democratic Party Chair; State Senator
Sharif Street / Jared Gruenwald, Left Eyed Studios

Since being elected in 2016, Sharif Street has become a leader in community safety and criminal justice reform in the state Senate. He sits on the Commission on Sentencing and chairs the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee. Elected as the first African American chair of the state Democratic Party in 2022, Street oversaw Democratic electoral victories that flipped a U.S. Senate seat and the state House – and retained the governor’s seat. Under his leadership, the Democratic Party has recently seen judicial sweeps in the state’s Commonwealth, Superior and Supreme Courts.

Sebrina Tate

President and CEO, Bebashi – Transition to Hope
Sebrina Tate / Christopher Cruz

Throughout her career, Sebrina Tate has worked in mental and behavioral health, housing, education and community relations. As the president and CEO of Bebashi, she focuses on helping uninsured and underinsured individuals receive high-quality, culturally competent health care. Tate is also a member of the board of directors of One House At A Time and an active member of the Black Nonprofit Chief Executives of Philadelphia.

Stacey Taylor

President, NAACP Pennsylvania State Conference
Stacey Taylor / UGI Energy Services, Angela DeLong

Stacey Taylor is the president of the NAACP Pennsylvania State Conference and the president of the Reading NAACP. In the face of struggles presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, Taylor played a central role in ensuring the continuity and longevity of Reading’s NAACP. A respected community activist, Taylor has been at the forefront of combating hate speech, expanding voting rights and strengthening NAACP chapters across the commonwealth. 

Celeste Trusty

Deputy Director of State Policy, FAMM
Celeste Trusty / Karim Muhammad Photography

Celeste Trusty is deputy director of state policy at Families Against Mandatory Minimums, where she works with impacted community members, lawmakers and stakeholders to advocate reforms to punitive sentencing laws and policies. In 2020, Trusty was appointed by then-Gov. Tom Wolf to serve on the Judicial Conduct Board of Pennsylvania and was appointed in the final year of the Wolf administration as secretary of the Pennsylvania Board of Pardons, where she oversaw the commonwealth’s clemency process.

Angela Val

CEO, Visit Philadelphia
Angela Val / Visit Philadelphia

Starting her career at Visit Philadelphia as an executive assistant and receptionist, Angela Val is now its CEO. With over 20 years of marketing experience, Val has served in several prominent senior marketing positions, including with the 2016 Host Committee for the Democratic National Convention and with the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau, where she led government and external affairs. 

Aaron Walton

President, Cheyney University
Aaron Walton / Cheyney University of Pennsylvania

Aaron Walton, president of Cheyney University, has spent over 40 years in senior management positions. From the outset of his tenure as president, Walton has prioritized producing graduates who excel in academics and are socially responsible. Before becoming president, Walton was the senior vice president of Highmark Inc., vice chair of the PASSHE Board of Governors, and a longtime member of California University of Pennsylvania’s Council of Trustees.

Gibran Washington

CEO, Ethos
Gibran Washington / Jennifer Lauren Photography

Gibran Washington, the recently named CEO of Ethos, is making his mark in the cannabis industry. One of the first Black CEOs of a multistate, large-scale cannabis company, Washington leads Ethos in operating over a dozen dispensaries with locations in Pennsylvania, Ohio and Massachusetts. Prior to becoming CEO, Washington was vice president of retail, wholesale and supply chain operations at the company.

Jake Wheatley

Chief of Staff, Office of the Mayor of Pittsburgh
Jake Wheatley / PA House of Representatives, Democratic Caucus

Jake Wheatley currently serves as chief of staff to Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey. Before taking that post, he was a state representative from the 19th House District for nearly two decades. A U.S. Marine Corps veteran who served in Operation Desert Storm, Wheatley was the minority chair of the state House Finance Committee. 

Wanda Williams

Harrisburg Mayor
Wanda Williams / Walnut St. Photography

Wanda Williams has spent her career working to improve the quality of life of residents in the commonwealth’s capital city. Before becoming the 39th mayor of Harrisburg, Williams was the president of the Harrisburg City Council, a position she held for over a decade. Williams serves as an executive board member of the Pennsylvania Municipal League, a Dauphin County Democratic committeewoman and a board member for the Downtown Improvement District.

Dalila Wilson-Scott

Executive Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer; President, Comcast; Comcast NBCUniversal Foundation

Dalila Wilson-Scott is the executive vice president and chief diversity officer at Comcast, as well as president of its NBCUniversal Foundation. In these roles, she leads diversity, equity and inclusion efforts and philanthropic initiatives, focusing on advancing digital equity and economic mobility. Before joining Comcast, Wilson-Scott was the head of global philanthropy at JPMorgan Chase & Co., and president of the JPMorgan Chase Foundation.

Jamila Winder

Chair, Montgomery County Board of Commissioners
Jamila Winder / Bryan Jimenez

An East Norriton Township native, Jamila Winder became the chair of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners in 2023. Before leading the legislative and executive arm of the  county, Winder was on the East Norriton Township Board of Supervisors and a member of the Norristown Area School Board. Winder has also volunteered with Big Brothers Big Sisters and served as a board member for Women in Transition, supporting people facing domestic violence and substance abuse.

Richard Womack

Councilmember, Delaware County

Richard Womack, elected to the Delaware County Council in 2021, serves as vice chair of the county’s legislative body. Womack, who’s been involved in labor movements for over 20 years, advises the president of community and religious affairs for the national AFL-CIO. Throughout his career, Womack has served as chair of the Darby Township Democratic Party and president of the Darby Township Board of Commissioners.