Since 2009, more than 2,500 dynamic, diverse, engaged, and interested participants from different walks of life have gathered each spring to share a meal, share ideas, and communicate in an effort to effect positive changes in our region.
Our partners at Program to Aid Citizen Enterprise (PACE) had a unique idea to “set the table” and provide a forum for meaningful conversations, with the goal to foster connections that would put us on the path toward a more inclusive and understanding Pittsburgh. Now, more than ever, the need for these conversations remain critical and PACE is pleased to once again “set the table” for these important, thought-provoking conversations that are so important to our region.
In 1968, PACE began as a response to civil unrest in Pittsburgh.
Following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., PACE was created by forerunners of the United Way of Allegheny County in partnership with the Health and Welfare Association, the Allegheny Conference of Community Development, and key leaders to help the African American community meet its needs by supporting the growth and development of nonprofit organizations. Since its inception, PACE has provided over $10 million in grants and technical assistance to over 300 nonprofit organizations in isolated and neglected areas of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County.
In the beginning, PACE directed general operating support funds and project grants to grass roots organizations enabling them to grow and provide services. Community jewels we supported in their early years include: Kingsley Center, Pittsburgh Literacy Council, NEED, the Bidwell Cultural and Training Center (Manchester) and many more. Organizations such as Crossroads Foundation, Gateway Medical Society, Naomi’s Place, Brothers and Sisters Emerging, Hill Dance Academy Theatre and Reading is Fundamental Pittsburgh are just a few of the organizations recently supported by PACE that are positioned to serve their communities effectively and meaningfully. For a period, PACE operated the PACE Opportunities Program (POP) that provided youth with after-school academic support and assistance in the pursuit of post-secondary education, vocational training and cultural enrichment.