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22nd Annual History Makers Award Dinner

Six distinguished Pittsburghers were honored for their exceptional contributions to the history of Western Pennsylvania, as part of the Senator John Heinz History Center’s 22nd Annual History Makers Award Dinner on May 11th, at the Westin Convention Center.

Jean Horne,  always elegant at the 22nd Annual Heinz History Makers Award Gala
photo by ljf
22nd Annual Heinz History Makers Gala Honorees
photo by ljf

The sold-out event co-chaired by Donald Heberle and Dan Fitzpatrick, and presented by BNY Mellon and Citizens Bank, started with a VIP Cocktail reception. Among the guests, Mr. Ron Davenport, who was honored in 2012, with Judy Davenport, Governor Tom Corbett and Susan Corbett, Jean Horne, Marimba Milliones, Richard Taylor, Dr. Linda Armstrong and Courtney Armstrong.

Assuring the event was executed flawlessly were Tonia Rose, Director of Administration, Clara Pascoe, Director of Development, and Brady Smith, Senior Communications Manager, of the Heinz History Center.

This year’s honorees:

Joe Grushecky, with a 30 year career as a musician and national recording artist, honored in the Arts and Entertainment category, is considered one of rock’s most talented singer-songwriters. He also has helped raise more than $1 million to fight Parkinson’s disease through his work with the Light of Day Foundation.

Jack Piatt, recognized for outstanding achievement in Business and Industry, is the Founder and Chairman of the Board, of Millcraft Investments, a multi-million dollar corporation founded in 1957. Mr. Piatt sits on numerous educational, health care, banking, and civic boards.

Honored in the Sports category, Mel Blount is without question, one of the most talented football players of all times, with a professional career spanning 14 seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers. A five-time Pro Bowler and four-time All-Pro, Mr. Blount was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1989. A true philanthropist, Blount founded the Mel Blount Youth Home in his hometown of Vidalia, Ga. in 1983 and opened a second home in Claysville, Pa., which have helped more the 12,000 disadvantaged boys.

Nadine Bognar, recognized for Philanthropy, is the chairman and CEO of Bognar and Company, Inc. Mrs. Bognar is a tireless volunteer and generous contributor to Pittsburgh's non-profit and charitable organizations, as well as serving on the boards of The Pittsburgh Public Theater, Pittsburgh Opera, and the Senator John Heinz History Center, among others.

Milton Washington and Dr. Nancy Washington were honored for Community Service. Milton A. Washington is chairman of the Allegheny Housing Rehabilitation Corporation and Nancy D. Washington, Ph.D. faculty emerita, University of Pittsburgh. This amazing couple has volunteered with numerous educational, cultural, and civic organizations throughout Western Pennsylvania.

More the 400 guests attended this years sold out event which to date has raised more than $6.5 million in support of the Heinz History Center, including $360,000 this year. To learn more about the History Center, please visit

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