Greater Louisville Inc. and Commerce Lexington Inc. teamed up to create a combined public and private leadership expedition May 10-12 to Pittsburgh. Approximately 350 business, professional, civic and government leaders took charter flights from the two cities and upon landing merged forces on the decks of Gateway Clipper for a riverboat tour of Pittsburgh along the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio Rivers. The boat tour was followed by presentations by Pittsburgh’s and Kentucky’s leaders, and lunch at Heinz Field – home of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Expedition members attended a broad range of presentations, including briefings on community redevelopment, the transforming force of higher education, philanthropy’s ability to create change, retraining displaced workers, funding new ideas, regional partnering in Kentucky for change, and innovations in K-12 education. Pittsburgh is recognized for its transformation from an air-polluted steel town that lost 100,000 jobs when the steel business collapsed in the 1980s into a high-tech, green city.
The co-chairs of the expedition were Kim Menke, Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky, and Evelyn Strange, Advanced Electrical Systems. Chase Bank and E.ON U.S. were presentation sponsors. Hotel accommodations and meeting facilities were provided in the Westin Convention Center Pittsburgh.