Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission

Chad Dion Lassiter, MSW

Executive Director 

Chad Dion Lassiter is a National Expert in the field of American Race Relations. Mr. Lassiter has worked on race, peace, and poverty-related issues in The United States of America, Africa, Canada, Haiti, Israel, and Norway, and is called upon frequently by media outlets to provide commentary on race relations and potential solutions. In April 2023, Mr. Lassiter was appointed by President Biden to the Presidential Advisory Commission on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunities for Black Americans.

He is the current Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, where over his five years in this position, he has continued to push the Commonwealth forward in the spaces of DEI Training, Unconscious Bias Training, Anti-Racism Training. He developed and launched a 'No Hate in Our State Townhall' to address the surge of White Nationalism in Pennsylvania; a 'Social Justice Lecture Series' to provide an outlet for the communities in the commonwealth to discuss imperative issues and serve as a Racial Reduction Response team for those communities impacted by hatred. He oversees a staff of 87 with three Regional Offices that comprise the 67 counties in Pennsylvania. He also manages an annual budget of $11 million dollars.

During his appointment, Mr. Lassiter has also developed programs such as, a 'Global Social Justice Initiative,' 'Black and Jewish Beloved Community Dialogue,' and the 'College Race Dialogue Initiative.'

Mr. Lassiter received his master's degree from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Social Work, where he was the A. Phillip Randolph Award winner in 2001 and was the recipient of the prestigious University of Pennsylvania's Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Involvement Award in 2008.

Mr. Lassiter is a co-founder and current president of the University of Pennsylvania's School of Social Policy & Practice's Black Men at Penn, the first Ivy League Black male group of social workers. Since 2003 this transcendent group has sought to recruit Black males into the profession, as well as, provide Anti-Racism and violence prevention training to urban and suburban schools around the country and diversity and inclusion training for corporate entities and penal systems.

Mr. Lassiter has been recognized by the Philadelphia Tribune as “The Most Influential African American Leader from 2010-2022," as “Who's Who among African-Americans" 17th edition in 2004 with such notables as Colin Powell and Michael Jordan.

On November 18, 2019, Mr. Lassiter was inducted into the University of Pennsylvania's School of Social Policy and Practice Alumni Hall of Fame.  On October 26, 2021, Mr. Lassiter was chosen as National Association of Social Workers, Pennsylvania Chapter Social Worker of the Year for 2021. He was the recipient of the 2023 International Association of Official Human Rights Agencies' International Award. He has also been recognized by City & State's 2022 Pennsylvania Fifty Over 50; City & State's 2022 Pennsylvania Impact 50; City & State's 2023 Pennsylvania Impact 75; City and State's 2022 & 2023 Pennsylvania Power of Diversity: Black 100; and Philadelphia Business Journal's 2024 Diversity in Business.