PHRC Executive Director appointed to Presidential Advisory Commission


April 25, 2023

PHRC Executive Director appointed to Presidential Advisory Commission

Harrisburg, PA- Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC) Executive Director Chad Dion Lassiter, MSW has been appointed by President Biden to the Presidential Advisory Commission on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence and Economic Opportunities for Black Americans

"As a proud graduate of an HBCU, Johnson C. Smith University and the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy and Practice, I am honored to join this group of dedicated Americans to develop solutions to dismantle systemic and institutional racism and create more economic and educational opportunities for Black Americans," said Chad Dion Lassiter, MSW. "During my time as the Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, I have worked to intentionally create a culture of peace, understanding and tolerance while pursuing justice and eradicating discrimination. I plan to bring that same culture of thinking to this Commission."

"This Advisory Commission will benefit greatly from Chad Dion Lassiter's wealth of knowledge and experience," said PHRC Chair M. Joel Bolstein. "His vision and leadership have enabled the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission to become one of the nation's leading civil rights agencies. He is exactly who the nation needs to identify the appropriate programs and initiatives to create equitable and economic opportunities for Black Americans."

The Commission will primarily focus on: 1) promoting career pathways for Black students through programs such as internships, apprenticeships and work-based learning initiatives, 2) increasing public awareness of the educational disparities Black Americans face and providing solutions to these problems, and 3) establishing local and national relationships with public, private, philanthropic, and nonprofit stakeholders to advance the mission of equity, excellence, and economic opportunity for Black Americans.

"I want to congratulate Chad Dion Lassiter on this well-deserved honor," said U.S. Representative Dwight Evans (PA-03). "He serves the public well as Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, as he has done in numerous other leadership roles."

Lassiter is a national expert in the field of American race relations who has worked on race, peace and poverty-related issues in the United States, Africa, Canada, Haiti, Israel, and Norway. As executive director of the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, he has developed and launched a "No Hate in Our State Townhall" to address the surge of White Nationalism in Pennsylvania, a "Social Justice Lecture Series" providing an outlet for communities to discuss imperative issues and serves as a Racial Reduction Response team for those communities impacted by hatred. Lassiter has also developed programs such as the "Global Social Justice Initiative," "Black and Jewish Beloved Community Dialogue," and the "College Race Dialogue Initiative." 

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 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Involvement Award in 2008. Lassiter is the co-founder and current president of The Black Men at Penn School of Social Work Inc., an organization within the School of Social Policy and Practice at the University of Pennsylvania, the first Ivy League Black male group of social workers. In 2019, he was inducted into the School of Social Policy and Practice Alumni Hall of Fame.

Lassiter was recently chosen as the National Association of Social Workers- Pennsylvania chapter's Social Worker of the Year for 2021 and was recognized by The Philadelphia Tribune as Most Influential African American Leader from 2010 to 2022.





PHRC Media Contact Details

Amanda Brothman

Communications Director 771-856-5971
Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission Media