University of Pittsburgh
March 10, 2011

Discussion on Local and Federal Perspectives Regarding Federal Funding and Transparency to Be Held at the University of Pittsburgh

Panel discussions are part of daylong conference titled “Transparency 2011: The Budget and Your Career”
Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH— The University of Pittsburgh will host a Feb. 25 conference with the American Association for Budget and Program Analysis (AABPA) titled “Transparency 2011: The Budget and Your Career.” The daylong conference will feature two panel discussions regarding federal funding and transparency from regional and federal governmental perspectives. The event is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m. in the University Club, 123 University Place, Oakland. 

Following welcoming remarks by John T.S. Keeler, dean of Pitt’s Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA), Pittsburgh City Councilman Douglas A. Shields will give a morning plenary speech. At 10:15 a.m., a session titled “Transparency: A Federal Perspective” will focus on the professional challenges and opportunities that exist as a result of the current federal fiscal distress. Practitioners will discuss how funding decisions are made and what data are available to aid policy choices. Panelists will include Pitt alumna and former trustee Melissa A. Hart (LAW ’87), attorney with Keevican Weiss Bauerle & Hirsch, LLC, and former U.S. congresswoman and Pennsylvania state senator; Marvin Phaup, research scholar at George Washington University and former director of the Federal Budget Reform Initiative with Pew Charitable Trusts; and Edward Brigham, federal budget consultant, previously on staff with the U.S. House Budget Committee, Office of Management and Budget, and the Department of Transportation. 

Following an 11:30 lunch, a session titled “Transparency: A Local Perspective” will feature a discussion on the local government’s response to the funding assistance provided by the federal government as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The related rules for transparency and reporting also will be examined. Panelists will be Richard P. Sommerfeld Jr. (GSPIA ’77), a partner at Tatum, LLC, and George W. Dougherty Jr., Pitt assistant professor in GSPIA. 

At 1 p.m., a round-table discussion will focus on how to build a career as a budget analyst. The afternoon will conclude with remarks by Jon Stehle (GSPIA ’07), president of the AABPA. 

The conference is cosponsored by Pitt’s GSPIA—a comprehensive school offering graduate and postgraduate programs in public administration, international development, public and international affairs, and public policy and management.