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cityLIVE!: Let's Jump-start Immigration

Historically, Pittsburgh's wealth and economy, like most other U.S. cities, was built with the help of a vast pool of immigrant workers. Now we rank 49 out of the top 50 metro areas in the U.S., in percentage of the population who are foreign born and have completed a college degree. Will we be left behind if we don't? How do we jump-start it? Panelists include both national and local experts. Bring your ideas and join the discussion!


Sunil Wadhwani is CEO and Co-Founder of iGATE Corporation (formerly Mastech) a global Information Technology business, with over 6,000 employees that service over 200 major clients on four continents.  Under Sunil’s leadership, Mastech was listed four times in Inc. magazine’s ranking as one of the fastest-growing companies in the United States,  and as one of the “Top 100 Hot Growth” companies by Business Week as well in the “Technology Fast 50” by Deloitte and Touche.


James P. Smith holds the chair in labor markets and demographic studies at Rand Corp.  He led the panel for the National Academy of Sciences on the economic and tax effects of immigration. Dr. Smith has served as principal investigator on a number of projects, including an analysis of the effects of economic development on labor markets; a study of black-white wages and employment; trends in women's wages and labor force growth; migration in developing countries; and the economic impact of immigration. In addition, Dr. Smith has participated in projects studying the evaluation of economic loss in wrongful death cases.

Since taking office in January 1992 as Philadelphia’s Councilman-at-large, Jim Kenney has championed numerous issues affecting the entire city of Philadelphia, including economic development, family and domestic violence, school violence, anti-graffiti measures, and restructuring the Section 8 housing program. Recent initiatives include reforming Philadelphia’s campaign finance laws and improving the region’s information technology industry. Every initiative undertaken by Jim Kenney is with one goal in mind: convincing current residents to stay in Philadelphia while attracting others to move here.

The Pittsburgh Refugee Center's Executive Director, Khadra Mohammed, is a native of Somalia and has over twenty years of experience in working with refugee populations, both in the US and in refugee camps in Pakistan and Kenya. In Pittsburgh, for the past eight years, she has advocated on behalf of local refugees and brought awareness of refugee issues to the attention of the greater Pittsburgh community. Ms. Mohammed is also a published author of several children's books. She is the recipient of numerous awards including the Girl Scouts Woman of Distinction in 2005, and was honored with PUMP and Pittsburgh Magazine's 2005 40 under 40 Award, celebrating 40 people under the age of 40 whose creativity, vision and passion enrich the Pittsburgh region.


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