Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Attracting More Immigrant Entrepreneurs to Pittsburgh Would Spark New Jobs and Economic Growth, Expert Tells Regional Leaders at GlobalPittsburgh Conference

Making the Pittsburgh Region more welcoming to immigrant entrepreneurs and focusing on immigrant innovation could help create new jobs and economic growth in the region. That was the message heard during a Dec. 20, 2011 conference coordinated by GlobalPittsburgh titled “Boosting Global Innovation - A Roundtable Discussion on Immigration.”

Richard T. Herman
Designed to launch a discussion on improving local attitudes and policies regarding immigration, the invitation-only conference featured Richard T. Herman, co-author of Immigrant, Inc. - Why Immigrant Entrepreneurs are Driving the New Economy and How They Will Save the American Worker, in addition to several of the region’s most prominent and successful international innovators and job creators who embody the value and importance of foreign-born entrepreneurs to the economic growth and cultural diversity of the Pittsburgh region.

Herman's research shows that rather that take jobs away from American-born workers, statistics show that immigrant entrepreneurs create new jobs by starting their own companies, and that other cities, states and even other countries are working hard to attract immigrant entrepreneurs to help boost their economies and create jobs.

Foreign-born entrepreneurs are more than twice as likely as the native-born population to start businesses that create jobs and economic growth, which benefit the entire region and all of its residents, Herman said.

For this event, which was held in the offices of sponsor Tucker Arensberg P.C., 35 of the region’s most prominent thought leaders and influencers came together for an on-the-record conversation about immigration designed to lead to a better understanding of the benefits of attracting and retaining international entrepreneurs, and set the stage for a constructive discussion on steps that can be taken to bring about positive change.

Participants included:

Adriana Dobrzcyka – Community Outreach and Inclusion Manager, Vibrant Pittsburgh
Rich Fitzgerald – Allegheny County Executive-Elect
Bill Flanagan – Allegheny Conference on Community Development
Brenda Frazier – Board member, Pittsburgh Partnership for Neighborhood Development; Former
member, Allegheny County Council
Evan Frazier – Senior Vice President Of Community Affairs, Highmark
Melanie Harrington - Executive Director, Vibrant Pittsburgh
Razi Imam – Founder, 113 Industries, Former President, TiE Pittsburgh
JoAnn Kazimer – Pittsburgh Field Office, US Citizenship & Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security
Pradeep Khosla – Dean, CMU College of Engineering
Jim Lamb – President, Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh, Honorary Consul for Ireland in Western PA
Frank Li – Merrill Lynch; Co-founder, Pittsburgh Chinese Chamber of Commerce
Tom Lippard - Executive VP and Senior Vice President, General Council, Tube City IMS
Jennifer Liptak – Chief of Staff, County Executive-Elect Rich Fitzgerald
Janine F. Macklin – CEO, Macklin Group
Gonzalo Manchego - Manager International Standards & Regulations at Center for International Regulatory Assistance at Duquesne University
Ganesh Mani – Global Innovation Center
Ralph Manning – Tucker Arensberg
Rajen Mookerjee – Professor of Economics, Pitt and Penn State
Tom Peterson – Managing Partner, Tucker Arensberg
Jonathan Raso  – Southwest Regional Manager for U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey
Natalia Rudiak – Member, Pittsburgh City Council, District 4
Audrey Russo – President & CEO, Pittsburgh Technology Council
Ken Service – Executive Director, Pittsburgh Council on Higher Education
Piyush Seth – Tucker Arensberg
Krishna Sharma – Sherman Metals
Gail Shrott – Director of International Programs, GlobalPittsburgh
Steve Sokol – President, World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh
Xiaoyan Zhang – Founder and CEO, Kit Solutions

For more information about the Immigration Roundtable, contact Thomas Buell, Jr., GlobalPittsburgh Director of Marketing, at 412-392-4513 or 412-720-2218, or by email at tbuell@globalpittsburgh.org.

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