Past president of Riverlife named new president of Pittsburgh Foundation |

Past president of Riverlife named new president of Pittsburgh Foundation

New Pittsburgh Foundation President Lisa Schroeder

The Pittsburgh Foundation’s Board of Directors has named Lisa M. Schroeder as the philanthropic organization’s new president.

Schroeder becomes the sixth president of the foundation and the first woman to lead the organization in its 75 year history.

She succeeds Maxwell King, who is retiring in September after serving a five-year term.

“We had the incredibly difficult task of finding someone who could match the managerial expertise, the creative thinking and the deep well of relationships that Max has brought to the position,” board Chair Dr. Edith Shapira said in a statement. “And we are beside ourselves at the good fortune of finding Lisa.”

Schroeder has most recently been working in her hometown of Baltimore as president and CEO of the Parks & People Foundation, which is dedicated to generating more resources and greater appreciation by residents for their city parks. But she is no stranger to Pittsburgh. From 2002 until 2015, she was the president of Riverlife, a public-private partnership with a mission to guide and advocate for redevelopment of Pittsburgh’s riverfronts.

“It is awe-inspiring to be following Max King into this position,” Schroeder said in a statement. “His accomplishments in Pittsburgh philanthropy and in the field nationally are legendary. He was a visionary, mentor and guide for translating public dreams into action, and ultimately, into reality during my years at Riverlife.”

In announcing the appointment, Shapira said Schroeder shares King’s conviction that the head of a community foundation must stand out as a strong civic leader, especially in representing those who have not benefitted from the region’s prosperity. She also cited Shroeder’s knowledge of Pittsburgh’s culture and “her remarkable talent for bringing together stakeholders across a wide range of business, ideological and political interests to benefit the entire community.”

The Pittsburgh Foundation ranks as one of the largest philanthropies in the city with assets totaling $1.1 billion. In 2018, it distributed $48.5 million in grants to nonprofits involved in human services, education and the arts.

King, who joined the foundation in 2014, announced he was stepping down as president last spring. When he was president of the Heinz Endowments from 1999 to 2008, King was one of Riverlife’s founders and served as board chair when Schroeder was hired as president.

“The board has made such a wise choice for the Foundation’s and Pittsburgh’s future,” said King in a statement. “And having a woman in the position is long overdue.”

Paul Guggenheimer is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Paul at 724-226-7706 or by email at [email protected]