NEED Names Interim President and New Board Chair


Contact: Amanda Brettholle Date: 6-28-2012
Executive Assistant, NEED


Following the recent death of President and CEO Sylvester Pace, the Negro Educational

Emergency Drive (NEED) today announced board member Claudette Lewis will serve as interim president and CEO while a search is conducted for Mr. Pace’s replacement. NEED also announced that UPMC’s Candi Castleberry-Singleton will take the reins of the organization as the new chair of the NEED Board of Directors effective July 1, 2012.

Outgoing board chair Ann Hoover of Bayer MaterialScience said, “Candi Castleberry-

Singleton’s election to chair the NEED Board of Directors took place months ago during a

meeting of the board that included Sylvester. He was pleased that Candi would be taking a

leadership role at NEED and I think he’d be happy to see that we’re staying on this path we laidout in April.”

Ms. Castleberry-Singleton lauded Mrs. Lewis’ selection as interim president saying, “The board felt Claudette was the right choice because of her thorough knowledge of the NEED operation and because of the great working relationship she had with Sylvester and continues to have with the staff, community, and local foundations. We’re fortunate her recent retirement has allowed her to make herself available to us during this time of transition.”

Candi Castleberry-Singleton is the chief inclusion and diversity officer at UPMC. She is

responsible for developing UPMC’s inclusion strategy, including its Dignity & Respect

Campaign and Cultural Competency Initiative, as well for overseeing progress toward systemwide goals involving 55,000 employees. In 2008, she launched the UPMC Center for Inclusion.

Claudette Lewis currently chairs the NEED Scholarship Committee. She retired earlier this

year after 14 years as a member of the senior management staff of the Allegheny County

Department of Human Services. Long committed to expanding the horizons of young people,

she has served on the boards of Three Rivers Youth, the Program to Aid Citizen Enterprise

(PACE), Manchester Bidwell Corporation, the Mt. Ararat Community Activity Center, Lydia’s

Place and the Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council. She is also a director of Fifth Third Bank.

Mrs. Hoover will remain on the NEED Board of Directors.