Carnegie Mellon University

TALI class 2019

September 11, 2020

Advanced Leadership Initiative Opens Recruitment for 2021 Cohort

Executive Leadership Academy Successfully Adapts to the Evolving Business Environment

TALI is seeking up to 25 prospective African American executives and professionals who are looking to further build and enhance their leadership and career potential. African American leaders who are accepted into the Executive Leadership Academy 2021 cohort will benefit in the following ways:

  • Participation in a seven-month customized world-class executive education program through Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business. This program provides over 100 hours of instruction.
  • Pairing with an executive coach who can help guide a greater sense of leadership identity.
  • Matching with an executive mentor from the Pittsburgh business community, which will allow them to leverage their mentor’s professional and personal networks. This connection also has the potential to lead to an executive sponsor relationship.
  • Access to peer networking through the cohort experience, which can also extend to the entire TALI alumni community.

In its inaugural year (2019), TALI selected 23 exceptionally talented executives from a competitive pool of applicants. These initial cohort members completed the program and are now making an impact on their companies and in the community. Year two (2020) has been just as positive with all 28-cohort members scheduled to graduate in November of this year.

“In the midst of the current pandemic, we worked with CMU to adapt the Executive Leadership Academy to meet current and evolving business needs,” said Evan Frazier, founding director of The Advanced Leadership Initiative and senior vice president of community affairs at Highmark Health.

“We are confident that The Advanced Leadership Initiative will positively prepare and position cohort members to advance in their careers as leaders and make a meaningful impact on their companies and in the community."

As TALI prepares for its third year, the delivery of the Executive Leadership Academy has shifted to a hybrid model to accommodate the current environment. Through the use of asynchronous and distance learning, cutting edge technology, and encouraging direct engagement when feasible, cohort members will have the agility to successfully navigate and lead in the changing business environment. Candidates interested in the 2021 cohort are encouraged to apply online by Oct. 1, 2020.

“TALI is the bold solution needed to rebuild confidence among rising African American leaders that Pittsburgh is a city that supports them as high-impact contributors in business and civic leadership,” said Greg Spencer, founding board co-chair of The Advanced Leadership Initiative and president and CEO of Randall Industries.

Support for The Advanced Leadership Initiative continues to grow as our region’s corporations and foundations embrace the need for diversity, equity, and inclusion. Below is a partial list of current sponsors and contributors to TALI.

  • Lead contributors: The Heinz Endowments, BNY Mellon Foundation of SWPA, Hillman Family Foundations
  • Presenting sponsors: Highmark Health, PNC, UPMC
  • Contributors: Buhl Foundation
  • Gold sponsors: Bank of America, BNY Mellon, Covestro, Dollar Bank, FHL Bank, Gateway Health, Giant Eagle Foundation, Koppers
  • Silver sponsors: Ernst & Young, PPG
  • Fiscal sponsor: POISE Foundation

For information on TALI, the Executive Leadership Academy, or to submit an application for the 2021 cohort, visit