The University of Pittsburgh Institute of Politics recognizes that the collective identity of any region is largely demonstrated by the overall values and priorities embraced by the people who live there. In Southwestern Pennsylvania, we place significant value on individuals who have a strong commitment to serve the region. To honor one of our community’s greatest civic servants and to recognize those who have followed in his path, the Institute of Politics created the Morton “Moe” Coleman Award for Excellence in Community Service.
The purpose of the Coleman Award is twofold. It creates a lasting tribute to the Institute’s founding director, Moe Coleman, for the substantial and enduring contributions he has made to the Southwestern Pennsylvania region in the areas of public policy and governance, education, health and human services, and human equity. The award also recognizes elected and nonelected community leaders who, by personal example and sustained generosity, have made a significant impact in the region. Nominees for this award should be outstanding individuals whose leadership and efforts have advanced the quality of life enjoyed by the citizens of Southwestern Pennsylvania.
Lisa A. Scales, J.D.
Lisa Scales has been President and CEO of Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank since 2012, leading the organization in distributing food for nearly 40 million meals annually through a network of 600 community partners in 11 counties of southwestern Pennsylvania.
“She leads by example. A face of the community, Lisa exemplifies the definition of unselfish.”
- Brian Gulish
John M. Wilds, Ph.D., SPHR
Dr. Wilds served as the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Community Relations at the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to this assignment, Dr. Wilds managed the University's Office of Human Resources for almost ten years.
“His legacy stretches across our teaching, research, and service missions of the University of Pittsburgh.”
- Jamilah Ducar
The award recognizes and honors an exceptional individual who makes community service a way of life. This individual must exemplify the best in community service through a sense of caring and responsibility for others and must do so in a way that connects citizens and solves community problems.
Specifically, the honoree is an individual who, over a sustained period of time:
- Gives freely and unselfishly of his or her time to community activities;
- Inspires others to serve and acts as a role model;
- Creates connections in the community that enhance coordination and collaboration in solving our region’s challenges;
- Has a positive impact upon the direction and success of community projects, programs or individuals; and
- Improves the lives of others.
To be eligible for the award, an individual must demonstrate significant and lasting contributions to the community beyond what is expected as a part of his or her professional life and/or demonstrate service to the community through participation on boards, volunteerism, and other activities that lie outside the scope of his or her current career.
Past Coleman Award Honorees
Please note that the titles and organizations listed reflect the position held by the awardee when he/she received the award.
|2006||Moe Coleman, director emeritus, Institute of Politics|
|2007||Maxwell King, executive director, Fred Rogers Center, Saint Vincent College|
|2008||Marc Cherna, director, Allegheny County Department of Human Services;
Jim Rohr, president and CEO, PNC Financial Services Group
|2009||Karen Wolk Feinstein, president and CEO, Jewish Healthcare Foundation;
David J. Malone, president and CEO, Gateway Financial Services
|2010||David E. Epperson, dean emeritus and professor emeritus, University of Pittsburgh|
|2011||Helen S. Faison, former teacher, principal, and superintendent, Pittsburgh Public Schools, and community leader in education|
|2012||Henry S. Beukema, executive director, McCune Foundation;
Morgan K. O’Brien, president and CEO, Peoples Natural Gas
|2013||Philip B. Hallen, president emeritus, Falk Foundation;
Linda McKenna Boxx, chairman, Katherine Mabis McKenna Foundation
|2014||Edie Shapira, president, board of directors, The Pittsburgh Foundation;
Rick Stafford, distinguished service professor of public policy, Carnegie Mellon University
|2015||Bill Isler, former president and CEO, The Fred Rogers Center;
Charles Queenan, chairman emeritus, K&L Gates LLP
|2016||Linda Lane, former superintendent, Pittsburgh Public Schools;
Bill Strickland, president and CEO, Manchester Bidwell Corporation
|2017||Terry Miller, director, Institute of Politics, University of Pittsburgh
Laurie Mulvey, former director of service demonstrations, Office of Child Development, University of Pittsburgh
Tracy Soska, assistant professor and director of COSA, School of Social Work, University of Pittsburgh
|2018||Laura Ellsworth, partner-in-charge of global community service initiatives, Jones Day
Saleem Ghubril, executive director, The Pittsburgh Promise
Aradhna Oliphant, president and CEO, Leadership Pittsburgh, Inc.
|2019||Fredrick W. Thieman, Henry Buhl, Jr. Chair for Civic Leadership, The Buhl Foundation|
|2020||Larry Swanson, executive director, ACTION Housing
Linda Dickerson, CEO, The Dickerson Group
Lisa A. Scales, president & CEO, Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank