Event Honors Those Who Promote Dignity and Respect

By: David Bubas and Stephanie Stanley

About 200 people attended the 5th Annual Partnership Appreciation Event hosted by the UPMC Center for Inclusion and Engagement to celebrate western Pennsylvanians who are helping to create a culture where every person is valued, appreciated and acknowledged.
Esther Bush, president and chief executive officer of the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh, welcomed attendees to the event. She shared her pride in working with UPMC to promote dignity and respect everywhere. In particular, she noted the progress and evolution of the Dignity and Respect Campaign under the direction of Candi Castleberry-Singleton, UPMC’s chief inclusion and diversity officer, with the support of Greg Peaslee, senior vice president of Human Resources, and other UPMC leaders.
The awardees were nominated by their peers, council leaders and the UPMC Center for Inclusion and Engagement because they exemplify finding common ground, treating others the way they want to be treated, and their commitment to the advancement of inclusion is of utmost importance to them.
Charlie Batch, Pittsburgh Steeler and founder of the Best of the Batch Foundation, was the master of ceremonies. He and UPMC executives presented more than a dozen awards to UPMC employees and community members in the areas of integrated inclusion, workforce development, community, youth and supplier diversity. Batch and LaTasha Wilson-Batch, also accepted the Community Partner of the Year award on behalf of the Best of the Batch Foundation.  
Additional Inclusion in the Community awardees were:
  • Bidwell Training Center (Workforce Development Champion)
  • Trish Wood, director, Food and Nutritional Services, South Fayette School District (Healthy Community, Healthy You Champion)
  • Bernadette Turner, president and founder, African-American Leadership Association (Dignity & Respect Champion)
  • School 2 Career (Youth Champion)
  • Lucy Spruill, director, Public Policy and Community Relations, United Cerebral Palsy/Community Living and Support Services(Disabilities Council Champion)
  • Professional Mechanical Sales and Services Inc.(Supplier Diversity Council Champion—Minority Business Enterprise)
  • Life’s Work of Western PA Inc. (Supplier Diversity Council Champion—Disadvantaged Business Enterprise)
Inclusion in the Workplace champions from UPMC were:
  • Marla Pryor, administrative coordinator, Medical Management Department (Employee Engagement Champion)
  • John Krolicki, vice president, Facilities and Support Services (Executive Partnership Champion)
  • Brenadette Bryan, nurse educator, UPMC Mercy (Nursing Mentorship Champion)
  • William (Bill) Simmons, M.D., Department of Anesthesiology, Pitt School of Medicine (Physician Inclusion Champion—UPMC/Pitt)
  • Donald D. Wolff Jr., Center for Quality, Safety,and Innovation at UPMC (Integrated Inclusion Champion—Team)
  • Sharon Czyzewski, vice president, Human Resources, Insurance Services Division (Integrated Inclusion Champion—Individual)
  • UPMC Hamot (Business Unit of the Year)
Batch closed the event by inviting everyone to take the pledge to treat everyone with dignity and respect. Video highlights of the celebration reflect just how important it is to everyone to have a culture of inclusion within UPMC and the community and how much we really are all in this together. The event also was featured in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette SEEN column.