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"Business as Usual" Explores the LGBTQAIP Community in Pittsburgh's Tech Industry

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The Pittsburgh Technology Council’s daily noon webcast “Business as Usual” will explore the LGBTQIAP community in Pittsburgh’s technology and innovation industries on Monday June 29 with three business executives/entrepreneurs across three technology market sectors, including health care/tech services, instrumentation and industrial tech.

Denise DeSimone, CEO & Founder, C-Leveled; Israel Alguindigue, PhD, VP, Analytics, Fortive Corporation; and Rick Cancelliere, CEO, Treatspace, will provide their perspectives on the challenges, opportunities and next steps to embrace diversity and create more inclusion across Pittsburgh and its tech ecosystem.

As recognized leaders in the tech industry, each of the panelists have unique insights on building a more inclusive future for Pittsburgh. To join this imperative conversation, preregister at:

To set the stage for the webcast, here are some facts around the journey of the LGBTQIAP community emerging into the mainstream: 

  • From 1953 to 1995 under the "Lavender Scare" - people who were gay and lesbian were targeted and fired as they were considered to posed a security threat if they worked for the Government, Not until 1995 was that overturned under the Clinton Administration


  • Pittsburgh City Report Card
    • Pittsburgh Scores 100 / 100 on the HRC Municipal Equality Index (examines how your state rates based on its laws, policies, and services of municipalities on the basis of their inclusivity of LGBTQ people)
    • The 100% score came after banning conversion therapy and adding some new protections for our transgender and transexual community. 


  • Adoption
    • Until 2002, Pennsylvania did not permit stepchild adoption by a person of the same sex as the first parent. A 6-0 ruling by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania established the right of same-sex couples to stepchild adoptions.[12] No statute prohibits a same-sex couple from adopting a child jointly.[11]


  • Hate Crimes
    • Pennsylvania passed a hate crime law in 2002 that covered LGBT people,[13] but the Pennsylvania Supreme Court struck it down in 2008 on a technicality: legislators inserted the language into an unrelated bill on agricultural terrorism, changing that bill's purpose during the legislative process, which violates the Pennsylvania Constitution.[citation needed] Legislation was introduced in several sessions to reinstate the law, but it never made it out of committee.[14][15][16]



  • Rainbow Flag
    • The Delta Foundation of Pittsburgh officially kicked-off Pittsburgh Pride 2012 with the Advocacy Rally at the City-County Building. The rally included a proclamation from both the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County, welcoming words from County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, an inspirational speech from Grand Marshal Billy Hileman, and the raising of the rainbow flag for the very first time.