Station News

Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Corporation Announces Newly Elected Board Members

February 10, 2022


Media Contact:

Michele Klingensmith


PITTSBURGH – Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Corporation, parent organization of 90.5 WESA, Pittsburgh’s NPR news station, and 91.3 WYEP, the Adult Album Alternative music station, welcomed three new members to the Board at its December 2021 meeting and reappointed a fourth individual to serve a third and final term.

Tom Petzinger, former Chair of the Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Board, was elected to serve a third term as a member of the Board. “I’m delighted to be returning as a board member at this pivotal time for journalism and culture in our region. WESA is helping to fill the news void in our community and WYEP remains a cultural leader. I’m excited to see both stations broadening and deepening their roles,” shared Petzinger. Tom became a Pittsburgh life sciences entrepreneur, co-founding Knopp Biosciences among other startups, following a 22-year career at The Wall Street Journal as staff writer, Houston bureau chief, Washington economics editor, investigative reporter, and columnist. He is the author of three business books, two selected as New York Times Notable Books of the year. He lives in Squirrel Hill with his wife, Paulette Thomas, also a former longtime Wall Street Journal staffer. They have three grown children and a grandchild. “Tom’s experience in both industry and in journalism brings unique insights to our Board. We are happy to have him continue to share his knowledge with us for an additional term,” noted Terry O’Reilly, Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting’s president and CEO.

In addition to Petzinger, three new directors were elected for three-year terms on the Board:

Susan Apel

Apel is a Senior Deputy Attorney General with the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General (OAG). Her focus over the past several years has been on prosecuting “rent to own” and “for sale by owner” scams, as part of the Bureau of Consumer Protection. Prior to joining the OAG four years ago, she was a Partner at the Pittsburgh office of the international law firm K&L Gates

LLP, where she worked primarily on commercial and transactional matters, including mergers & acquisitions. Susan also has executive corporate experience, having taken a 10-year hiatus from K&L Gates to serve as General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of a privately held steel manufacturing and forging company, Ellwood Group, Inc. She recently completed a 12-year tenure on the Board of Directors of Bridgeway Capital, a Pittsburgh based Community Financial Development Institution, during which period she chaired the Loan Committee and served on the Executive Committee. She is a graduate of Kenyon College and Harvard Law School. She and her husband Adrian Roe have three children. Ms. Apel shared “I am very excited by the opportunity to serve on the Board of Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting, especially during this period in our country’s history. The unbiased objective news delivered by WESA, and National Public Radio, is critical to sustaining our democracy.”

Paula Davis

Davis, a certified diversity executive, is Associate Vice Chancellor for diversity, equity, and inclusion for the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences. Davis assumed her current position after serving the School of Medicine as Assistant Dean with responsibility for admissions, financial aid, and diversity programs, then as Assistant Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences Diversity. Davis’ career has centered on higher education administration, including recruitment and admissions, financial aid, academic advising, alumni relations, and support services for diverse student populations. A two-time graduate of the University of Pittsburgh (BA, English and MA, Communications) and first individual recipient of the 2003 Chancellor’s Affirmative Action Award. Davis serves the community through organizations that support women, girls, and people with disabilities, and chairs the board of M-Power House, a nonprofit founded to support students of color in science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics. “Having interned at WYEP as an undergraduate, I consider this engagement as coming full circle. I look forward to serving,” said Davis. The parent of a young adult on the autism spectrum, Davis is a staunch advocate for disability research and education. Davis is a doctoral candidate in the University of Pittsburgh School of Education.

Justin Beck

Beck is an associate with Meyer, Unkovic & Scott LLP, where his practice focuses on commercial disputes in state and federal court. He is a graduate of Saint Vincent College and attended the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. Prior to attending law school, Beck was a professional pianist and vocalist. He is actively engaged in the community and currently serves as a member of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s New Leadership Council. Beck resides in the Strip District with his partner, Nick. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to be involved in the leadership of the Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Corporation. Both WESA and WYEP enrich the lives of those in our region by offering invaluable news, ideas, and entertainment. They are the types of institutions that make Western Pennsylvania more diverse, informed, and aware. Preserving the history and nurturing the growth of these stations is a worthwhile exercise,” said Beck of his new role.

The new board members will join the Board at its next meeting on March 2, 2022.

Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Corporation is an independent, locally owned community-supported public media organization. We are home to Pittsburgh’s NPR News station, 90.5 WESA, and adult alternative music station, 91.3 WYEP, serving Pittsburgh and the surrounding communities of Western Pennsylvania. Our mission is to create and distribute trusted content, build connections, and strengthen our community through public media. Our vision is to foster a community that is well-informed, inclusive, and engaged.