Thursday, April 22, 2010

GlobalPittsburgh Presents Bridge Awards to Manchester Bidwell, Westinghouse, Omnyx & Canada

PITTSBURGH, April 21, 2010 - GlobalPittsburgh today presented its annual International Bridge Awards to two companies, one community group and one country for "building bridges of understanding and cooperation between the Pittsburgh Region and the world."

Winning the 2010 International Bridge Awards were:
Manchester Bidwell Corp., which runs Manchester Craftsmen's Guild and Bidwell Training Center - Community & Culture
Westinghouse Electric Company - Established Commerce
Omnyx LLC - Emerging Commerce
Canada - Country

Since 1993, the Bridge Awards have been a unique recognition of the region’s global connections by GlobalPittsburgh, formerly the Pittsburgh Council for International Visitors. The event brings together the area’s leaders in the fields of energy, environmental design & innovation, education, high technology, life sciences and advanced manufacturing.

Held at the Heinz Field East Club Lounge, the International Bridge Awards event was the centerpiece of the GlobalPittsburgh Energy, Life Sciences & Education Showcase, which welcomed more than 20 Embassy and Consulate officials from countries including Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, United Kingdom and Vietnam.

Bill Strickland established Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild in 1968 to help combat the effects of economic and social devastation experienced by the youth of his inner-city neighborhood on Pittsburgh’s North Side.

Just as the introduction to art had helped to change the course of his life, Bill hoped art would inspire similar change in his community. Located in a residential row house, Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild initially offered informal ceramics classes and a small exhibition space. Then something amazing started happening. Young people who participated in the program started doing better in school. They started graduating from high school. They became contributing members of society. They became successful.

Because of his successful track record with Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild, Bill was asked to assume the leadership of Bidwell Training Center, a vocational education program serving mostly displaced steel workers from the same community. The same thing happened at Bidwell. People who had no hope found direction in their lives. They too found success.

Today, Manchester Bidwell Corporation lives in a beautiful 62,000 square-foot arts and career training center. This facility, which many of you saw this morning, offers studios, classrooms, workshops, gallery spaces, and a 350-seat auditorium. The center currently provides training in fields as varied as gourmet food preparation, chemical, office, and medical technologies, and education arts programming in ceramics, photography, and digital imaging. In addition, the center presents nationally acclaimed jazz performances, and its own jazz recording label has produced four Grammy-winning CDs. And most noticeable is the fact that there are no metal detectors at the doors, and the police have never been called to break up a fight.

This started out as a great Pittsburgh story. Now it’s a great global story. Bill Strickland plans to bring the model he created in Pittsburgh to 100 centers in the United States and 100 more around the world. Three new centers already have opened in San Francisco, Cincinnati and Grand Rapids, Michigan. Others are on the drawing board in Canada, Ireland, Israel and Brazil.

The idea that grew out of the streets of Pittsburgh’s North Side is now taking root in cities around the world in which leaders are looking for solutions, and in which young people are looking for hope. Manchester Bidwell Corporation builds bridges of opportunity.

Learn more at

The roots of Westinghouse Electric Company run deep into the history of Pittsburgh and the United States. Founded by George Westinghouse in 1886, the company made its name promoting Nicola Tesla’s alternating-current system.

Westinghouse Electric used Tesla’s system to light the World’s Columbian Exposition at Chicago in 1893. This system was also a factor in winning the company the contract to install the first power machinery at Niagara Falls. By the turn of the century, Westinghouse’s enterprises had grown to employ over 50,000 people.

Financial difficulties plagued Westinghouse in the 1970’s and ‘80’s, but by 2000, the company had streamlined and refocused on its energy expertise. Today, nearly 50 percent of the nuclear power plants in operation worldwide are based on Westinghouse technology, including projects in South Korea, Japan, China, Europe and South Africa, and nearly 60 percent in the United States.

The company is currently working with the nuclear industry and government agencies on formulating design improvements and an improved risk-based licensing process that will reduce the construction costs of new plants to help maintain the essential nuclear option for the future world energy marketplace.

Worldwide, the nearly 8,500 employees of Westinghouse Electric Company – which is now owned by Toshiba Corporation – continue to pioneer value-added engineering and services creating success for our customers in their increasingly demanding markets.

Learn more at

OMNYX LLC - Emerging Commerce
Omnyx is a joint venture of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and GE Healthcare and with headquarters in Pittsbugh. The company is developing a software platform to transform the scope of pathology to an all-digital workflow.

Omnyx will market its digital pathology platform to clinical labs and offer a software system for image management, workflow automation, image analysis algorithms and system integration along with its high speed whole-slide scanners.

Omnyx recently announced the launch of a Global Collaborators Program to advance Digital Pathology products, technology and use for clinical applications. The program brings together thirteen institutions in seven countries – the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Singapore, France, Italy and Scotland.

Close collaboration with pathologists at UPMC and other institutions along with their relationship with GE Healthcare allows Omnyx to focus its innovation on the needs of anatomic pathologists worldwide. Omnyx digital pathology products are currently in development and have not yet been cleared by the FDA.

As a joint venture of UPMC and GE Healthcare, Omnyx draws from each partner’s deep roots in engineering and clinical excellence. GE Healthcare has experience in clinical radiology and cardiology in hospitals worldwide, and Omnyx will build on GE Healthcare’s proven device research and next generation medical software platforms. As a recognized leader in digital pathology, UPMC will guide the product design and serve as a proving ground within its network of hospitals and labs.

Learn more at

CANADA - Country
Canada is by far the largest customer for Pittsburgh-area exports, with nearly $9 billion worth of goods and services shipped north of the border from Pennsylvania in 2008. In 2008, Pennsylvania exported 30 percent of its foreign-bound goods to Canada, more than to its next six international trading partners — Mexico, Belgium, China, Japan, United Kingdom and Germany — combined.

An estimated 295,000 jobs in Pennsylvania are attributed to Canada–U.S. trade.
Canada is also the largest supplier of energy to Pennsylvania and the United States. The vast Alberta oil sands reserves represent not only a major source of oil and gas for U.S. consumers, but also a tremendous business opportunity for Pittsburgh-area engineering, manufacturing and oilfield service companies.

Canadian firms employ approximately 4,300 people at more than 50 locations in the Greater Pittsburgh region. Some 1,000 employees of Montreal-based Bombardier are located in Pittsburgh working to make the company a global leader in the production of aircraft, people-movers and other transport systems. Among the Bombardier sites found in Pittsburgh are the design and manufacturing facilities of Bombardier’s CX-100 rail shuttles. The CX-100 is used to move travelers quickly and easily around airports throughout the world.

Bombardier is one of many companies that profit from a highly-integrated supply chain that exists between operations in the two countries that increasingly depends on cross-border shipments and just-in-time deliveries.

Ontario-based Hatch Associates is a global leader in engineering, construction management and consulting. Its Pittsburgh office serves as the U.S. regional headquarters, where more than 250 professionals use their expertise to help clients undertake complex building projects.

These are just a couple of examples of the important partnerships between the United States and Canada.

Learn more at

This year's International Bridge Awards event also featured booths and interactive displays highlighting the Region’s leading companies and organizations in the field of energy, environmental and education.

As a member of the National Council for International Visitors, GlobalPittsburgh works with the U.S. Department of State and other international organizations to arrange and coordinate visits by foreign individuals and delegations interested in learning more about Pittsburgh’s centers of excellence, including energy, education, technology, health sciences, green design and social services, and in studying the region’s economic and environmental transformation.

For 50 years, GlobalPittsburgh has welcomed volunteers and hosts to act as tour guides, dinner hosts, home stay hosts and drivers for visiting delegations and individuals. For more information about GlobalPittsburgh programs, visit, call 412-392-4513 or send email to


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