Meryl Kirshner Ainsman
Executive Director and Trustee, Philip Chosky Foundation
Meryl Kirshner Ainsman is the business manager of the law firm of Ainsman Levine, LLC, and the Executive Director and Trustee of the Philip Chosky Foundation.
Director, Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh
Jeff Finkelstein has served as President/CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh since 2004. He is President of JPRO, a graduate of Leadership Pittsburgh and the Wexner Heritage Program, a past Chair of the Large City Executives Group of JFNA, and a board member of the Jewish Healthcare Foundation.
Counsel, Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis
Timothy K. Lewis, a former federal appeals court judge, is the co-chair of Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis’s Alternative Dispute Resolution Practice Group and serves as a mediator, arbitrator, settlement counselor, and trial and appellate practitioner.
Co-Chair, Eradicate Hate Global Summit; Chancellor Emeritus and Chair of the Institute of Politics, University of Pittsburgh
Mark Nordenberg joined the University of Pittsburgh School of Law faculty in 1977 and earned a reputation for outstanding teaching and impact in his field.
Steering Committee, Eradicate Hate Global Summit; Principal, Michele Rosenthal Consulting
Michele Rosenthal is the principal in Michele Rosenthal Consulting, a consulting firm representing local public figures, including Brett Keisel.
Chairman, Beacon and Shapira Foundations
A Pittsburgh native with an undergraduate degree from Oberlin College and a Master’s Degree in Economics from Stanford University, Mr. Shapira joined Giant Eagle in 1970, a company founded by his grandfather with four others. Named president and CEO in 1980 and Chairman of the Giant Eagle Board of Directors in 1992, David led the company during its peak years of growth and transformation.
Herb Shear joined the board of The Pittsburgh Foundation in 2021. He serves as chairman of the Shear Family Office (SFO) and G2.0. The SFO manages the Shear Family Foundation and the Shear Family Investments. G2.0 is a company focused on the reverse logistics supply chain. Shear was formerly the executive chairman and CEO of GENCO, which he successfully grew from a $300,000 business to a $1.6 billion company that was sold in 2014 to FedEx.
To me, Eradicate Hate was the most important gathering of 2021 for those of us who work on issues related to domestic extremism and organized hate. The Summit uniquely combined a variety of perspectives, including experts, civil society representatives, politicians and policymakers, and the families and loved ones of victims. Eradicate Hate has the important mission of standing against the rising tide of hate and extremism in our society, and it's an honor to be able to support this mission.
The connections from Pittsburgh have led to meetings and plans, including at the United Nations, demonstrating how different individuals and groups of all faiths and backgrounds can assume a central role to combat hate and nurture peaceful coexistence among citizens and communities.
The Summit was a much-needed platform for ideas to address dangerous trends built on hate and we at The United Nations look forward to the 2022 Summit.
My network of professionals working on countering hate in all its forms grew exponentially after attending Eradicate Hate in 2021. The myriad voices represented at Eradicate Hate, from big tech companies to academic researchers to those with lived experience, reinforced to me the importance of cross-cutting and collaborative approaches to counter hate and its devastating impacts on society. I’ve been fortunate to sustain and build those networks with many of those I met at Eradicate Hate in 2021.
This cannot be thought of as a conference or a summit. The stakes are simply too high and the data/conversation and methods to drive action more valuable/motivating than any gathering I have attended. I took more than 100 pages of notes and have shared them with my CBS News leadership team, anchors, producers, and correspondents. Nothing about this gathering was easy. The agony around this topic is real. But no one curious about it could ask for a more devoted, rational, or unflinching look into this dark but decipherable world.
The catalytic power of this Summit in bringing together those who are devoting their lives to pushing back and working to confront, understand and work towards solutions around hate in our society is a noble and difficult task. The Summit not only energized those who attended but led to connecting the dots in a global network of those doing this work. The stories of the victims of hate were painful to witness but their courage in coming forward was inspirational. Those who attended left energized with the hope that by working together solutions can be forged.
The Eradicating Hate Global Summit was both eye-opening and empowering. To have so many experts in the field of countering hate, all there sharing their expertise, working towards practical and real world solutions, was incredibly unique. It is this focus on meaningful conversations, answers, and solutions that makes Eradicating Hate so incredibly important. The spread of hate is a wicked problem, and the way Eradicating Hate approaches it is how we are going to solve it.
The effort to eradicate hate requires the active participation of every component of our society, to include governments, the private sector, communities of faith and indeed every aspect of civil society. There is no more urgent task in front of us. The organizers of the Eradicate Hate Global Summit are doing the United States and the world an enormous service by tackling hatred and extremism with a focus on honest dialogue and conversation, genuine learning and practical solutions. This will not happen overnight, but the Pittsburgh community’s leadership in this effort is genuinely inspiring and motivating.
The Summit offers a unique opportunity to confront the corrosive influence of bigotry and hatred in our society. In order for us to address these challenges, we first must acknowledge their painful and destructive impact in our communities and in our country. I am grateful to serve as a Global Advisor to this timely and powerful initiative.
The Summit was more than empty words - it made clear that a solution-driven approach is the only way to fight hate. That's why the working group activities, which are results driven are going to be critical in defeating violent extremism. The Summit brought together the best minds in government, private sector, academia, and civil society. Being surrounded by these experts sparked new ideas - some of which I've already implemented or have written about.
It is a tragic reality that hateful ideology has found fertile ground online and offline, with consequences affecting not only Americans but people around the world. We cannot stand idle in the face of bias, bigotry, and extremism. Together, at the Eradicate Hate Summit and beyond, the collective will of individuals and organizations is needed to galvanize all people of good will to protect and defend our communities.
The inaugural Eradicate Hate Summit was a truly impressive gathering of leaders dedicated to finding lasting and effective solutions to violent extremism. I was particularly moved by the prominence given to survivors and family members of victims of hate and violence throughout the event. Their stories and those of so many others must be at the center of what we do and why we do it.
The Eradicate Hate Global Summit brings together scholars, practitioners, civil society organizations, and policymakers from around the world to share best practices and lessons learned, based on data and empirical evidence, in countering hate-fueled extremism and violent narratives. No other summit, conference, or workshop brings together such an extraordinary group of world-class talent focused on dealing with the issue of hate-fueled violent extremism.
The Summit unites the public and private sectors, domestic and international, against hate and extremism. Researchers, activists, lawyers, technology experts, political leaders, and more come together, each bringing their unique tools to the fight. Important relationships that were established at the Summit in 2021 have carried forward into working groups with concrete deliverables for 2022 and beyond.