Board of Directors

As a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, the WCDC is governed by a board of directors, including business professionals, bankers, architects, artists, and residents.

Bud Wise
President

Born and raised in Wilkinsburg, Bud is a 1965 graduate of Wilkinsburg High School and chaired the Wilkinsburg Train Station alumni committee. He earned a B.A. in psychology from Ohio University in 1969 and an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh in 1973. He retired in 2010 from PPG Industries after 31 years of service, serving the last 10 as the leader of the global Human Resource function. 

Previously, Bud was a faculty member in the Economic and Business Department of Juniata College for seven years. In addition to his work for the WCDC, Bud is a trustee for Juniata College, an emeritus board member for Deer Valley YMCA Family Camp, and chairs multiple committees at South Avenue United Methodist Church in Wilkinsburg.

Jason Cohn
Vice President & Resident
Self-employed

Jason renovated the house he has lived in for 20 years as well as several other properties in the general area. As a result, he has developed a basic understanding of and appreciation for the difficulties and value of renovating the building stock in the Borough.

In addition to his renovation and development experience, Jason is a self-employed photographer and videographer.

His commitment to the community includes civic leadership. He is the current president of the Industrial and Commercial Authority and Municipal Authority, the Zoning Hearing Board and President and a 5 co-founders of the Wilkinsburg Sun. He has served two terms on Borough Council: two years as Vice President and two as President. He is also past President of the Hamnett Place Neighborhood Association, past Chair of the Wilkinsburg Planning Commission and a former member of the Landmarks Capital Corporation Board.

Ron Porter
Secretary
President & CEO, RDP Consulting Services

Since founding RDP Consulting services in 1985, Ronald Porter has facilitated collaboration and planning between diverse groups of residents and business owners. His 30 years of consulting experience include instituting an inclusive planning process for the development of the Lower Hill District and contributing to a Community Benefits Agreement between residents and the Pittsburgh Penguins.

He is currently retained by the City of Pittsburgh to facilitate planning in Homewood, East Liberty, East Hills, Lincoln-Lemington and Larimer and is Vice Chair of the Design Center of Pittsburgh.

Michael Lefebvre
Treasurer
Resident

Originally from the Twin Cities, Michael moved here in 1992 to work at the Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory to work on the design of the S9G Next Generation Reactor for naval submarine propulsion. For the last 20+ years, he has worked in the computer software industry.

Michael has lived in Wilkinsburg for over 20 years and has renovated several properties in Wilkinsburg including the house he currently lives in.

Michael’s commitment to the community includes member of the Planning Commission for many years. He served 12 years on the Wilkinsburg Council. He was the Financial Committee chairman for many of those years.

Although he believes there has been progress during his tenor on Borough Council, he would like to see further revitalization of the Wilkinsburg business district and a reduction in blight throughout the Borough.

Leslie G. Ledbetter-Patterson

Member 

Originally from Masury, Ohio, Leslie moved to Pittsburgh in 1978 and began her career with what is now PNC Bank as a teller, eventually serving as branch manager for several branches before retiring from PNC in 2015. Some of the first meetings of the WCDC were held at the bank’s Wilkinsburg branch when she was its manager. 

In addition to her professional career, Leslie is a member and past president of the East Liberty and Wilkinsburg Rotary; a board member and past president of the WCDC; a Girl Scout leader; a member of Deliverance Baptist Church; and she has served as the bookkeeper for White Memorial Chapel since 2005.

A resident of Wilkinsburg for 37 years, Leslie is eager to see the community — particularly the business district — grow into a destination for people to visit, shop, and dine.

Brian Seiffert
Member & Resident
Artemis Construction & Design

With extensive experience in construction and restoration, Brian Sieffert brings to the Board a passion for sustainability and development opportunities in communities with high vacancy rates like Wilkinsburg.

He hopes to facilitate creative collaborations between lenders and buyers in order to attract new residents and visitors to the area.

Stefani Smith
Member

Having worked in Wilkinsburg for five years at the First National Bank of Pittsburgh, where she is now the branch manager, Stefani Smith is deeply invested in the revival of the borough’s business community. A resident of New Kensington, Smith’s day-to-day focus is improving financial literacy and business development within Wilkinsburg, with the goal of creating a vibrant commercial corridor.

Stefani is a member of the Wilkinsburg-Regent Square Rotary, and served as its president until July 2019. She is currently the vice president of the Wilkinsburg Chamber of Commerce. She is pursuing a degree in human resource management from Strayer University.

Steve

Steve Alschuler
Member
Founder, Alschuler Communications

Prior to joining the WCDC, Steve supported the organization and other Wilkinsburg-based groups through in-kind communications and PR support. As founder of his own firm, Alschuler Communications, Steve brings a wealth of public relations and marketing knowledge to the WCDC board.

Steve’s background includes strategic communications counsel, crisis communications strategy, and governmental affairs.

Monique McIntosh, M.Ed
Member & Resident

Chief Executive Officer, YWCA Greater Pittsburgh

With 27-years of experience in education and nonprofit service, Monique is Chief Administrative Officer of the YWCA Greater Pittsburgh and previously served as Vice-President of Programs and Services with the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh.

Monique has worked to build and advance local and regional collaborations that are broadly inclusive and focused on achieving racial equity. She approaches community development through the lens of collective impact and to address racial disparities in communities.

A native of Wilkinsburg, Monique attended Turner Elementary and St James schools. She is a member of the Forbes Fund Executive Council, Homewood Community Development Collaborative, and an Advisory Committee member for the University of Pittsburgh’s Homewood Brushton Community Engagement Center.

Tracy Whittington
Member & Resident

Retired U.S. Diplomat

As a U.S. Diplomat, two decades of living in and traveling to 10 cities and four continents has provided Tracy the opportunity to gain experience in relating to and communicating with top U.S. and foreign officials. She has performed duties in human rights and external affairs, financial management, developed cultural outreach for indigenous communities, built low-income housing, managed meal programs for homeless people and has adjusted to different sets of political issues while learning new professional proficiencies.

Her philosophy is that her value comes not in a deep knowledge in the places she has been, but in the skills, she possesses to successfully navigate whatever situation she faces.

Tracy has been an active volunteer with youth organizations, housing groups and several domestic and international animal rescue organizations.

Patricia Pugh-Mitchell
Member & Resident

Writer, Researcher, & Curator of local African American History

A native Pittsburgher, Patricia Pugh Mitchell is an avid writer, researcher, and curator of local African American history. She has authored and co-authored several publications documenting the history of African Americans in Pittsburgh and since 2000 has served regularly as study leader for the OSHER Lifelong Learning Institute at Carnegie Mellon University. She also served as a frequent consultant in Pittsburgh’s cultural community.

 Patricia resides in Wilkinsburg, and, as a Wilkinsburg CDC board member looks forward to working with fellow colleagues for the good of the community.

Shawn Thomas
Member & Resident

Entrepreneur Lending Director, Bridgeway Capital

Passionate about the banking and lending industry, Shawn has over 20 years of consumer and business banking experience. Throughout his career he has managed many banks in the Pittsburgh region. As the Entrepreneur Lending Director for Bridgeway Capital, he directs their small business lending efforts and works with entrepreneurs to deliver funding solutions tailored to their business needs. A strong people-oriented person his strength and passion of working with small businesses and community development is what he brings to the WCDC board.

 A long time Wilkinsburg resident, Shawn sits on several nonprofit boards in western Pennsylvania including the Alma Illery Health Center and the Sister Thea bowman Advisory Board. He is a graduate of La Roche College with a BS degree in Business Administration and Business Management.

Interested in serving on the WCDC’s Board of Directors?

Review our Board Member Application and check out our Guidestar profile.  Direct questions to info@wilkinsburgcdc.org, call us at (412) 727-7855 or click the contact button below.