The Children's Institute Blog

Announcement from our Board Chair John Thornburgh

Posted: Jun 20, 2017 by The Children's Institute

Dear Friend of The Children's Institute,

For more than a century, The Children's Institute of Pittsburgh has been dedicated to improving the quality of life for children, young people, and their families by providing a specialized continuum of services that enables them to reach their potential.

Our national recognition as the go-to resource for helping children with a variety of unique needs is due in large part to our extraordinary staff and physicians and our wonderful community support, but also to the strong and dedicated senior leaders who have led our organization over the years.
Today we are excited to announce the next chapter in our organization's leadership, as The Children's Institute has selected Dr. Wendy Ann Pardee to assume the role of President and CEO, effective August 7.

Wendy will succeed our long-time CEO David Miles, who has served The Children's Institute for 40 years in various roles, including as a teacher in the organization's Day School, in management positions for inpatient and outpatient services including Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, among others. David assumed the role of CEO in 2003. Under his leadership, the organization achieve many operational and financial improvements, doubled the number of children and families served, and completed two comprehensive fundraising Campaigns totaling $42 million.

We greatly appreciate David for his decades of dedicated service. He is committed to working with Wendy to ensure a smooth transition.


Wendy comes to us with more than two decades of management experience in the healthcare, human services, and financial services sectors. Most recently, she served as the President and CEO of Hattie Larlham, an Ohio-based nonprofit that provides medical, residential, recreational and work training services to 1,800 children and adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities. Previously, she served as President and CEO of Skills of Central Pennsylvania, an organization with sites in 18 Counties serving those with intellectual disabilities. She also served as CFO of the Community Guidance Center and began her career at First Commonwealth Financial Corporation.

Wendy holds an MBA and a PhD from Indiana University of Pennsylvania as well as two undergraduate degrees in accounting and management of information systems.

Our Board of Directors unanimously selected Wendy after a robust search conducted in partnership with Nonprofit Talent, an executive search firm. A designated committee of the Board began the process by considering the CEO role in light of the shifting landscape in the healthcare, human services, and education industries, and the current and future needs of the children and families we serve. The committee also identified the skills, traits, and experiences that would be most valuable to our unique organization.

We were honored to have 82 high-quality applicants apply for the position. Ultimately, Wendy rose to the top as the right person to lead our organization forward to the future. There is strong alignment between her skills and experience and the Board's criteria, such as her proven expertise in forging relationships internally and externally, managing strategic planning processes, creating organizational visions, enhancing financial and IT management and productivity, and more.

We strongly believe Wendy is the right person to build on the tremendous accomplishments David Miles has achieved during his 14-year tenure as CEO and to lead The Children's Institute during this transformative time in our organization's history.

Importantly, Wendy will play a valuable role in working with our Board of Directors and senior leadership team as we continue with the partnership exploration process over the coming months.

We greatly thank you for your support of The Children's Institute during this exciting time. Wendy is thrilled to join us and is committed to continuing the strong progress we have made over the past few years. There will be many opportunities to get to know Wendy over the coming months, and we look forward to sharing those opportunities soon. Please don't hesitate to reach out in the meantime if you have any questions or thoughts to share.


John K. Thornburgh
Chair, Board of Directors

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