My name is Don. I like to solve problems and make things. I live in Pittsburgh with my wife Teresa and our hairless cats (Dobby & Nargle) and hairless dog (Iggy). I enjoy running, playing soccer, and am passionate about the environment, gardening, and helping small businesses and nonprofits succeed.
I’m a passionate advocate for the things I believe in. I’m also a pragmatic realist. This dichotomy doesn’t cause the internal conflict that you might imagine. Instead it keeps me open to reframing the problems I care the most about. It drives me to find new ways to understand those problems in better detail especially from viewpoints that are often counter to my own.
Teresa and I are building a passive solar timber framed straw bale house on a little more than a half-acre that we own just outside of the city limits. We intend to grow as much of our own food as possible. We also intend to power our house with renewables and not use any fossil fuels to heat or power our home.
I grew up in Wheeling, WV which is a rust-belt town on the Ohio River about an hour from Pittsburgh. I came to Pittsburgh to study photography and fell in love with this incredible city. I’ve been in Pittsburgh since 1998. Watching Pittsburgh transform after the steel industry collapse of the 1980s into a high tech hub centered on education and medicine has been fascinating.
I’m looking forward to the continued growth of Pittsburgh and hope to see that growth begin to spread laterally. As a community minded person I’ve spent time listening to and working on projects that impact individuals in a variety of ways. These intersections are not just places where edges meet and congestion occurs. They’re where opportunities for shared empowerment, for innovative solutions, and for complimentary progress that can improve the prospects of all who meet there are born. It might sound counter intuitive but to move forward we’ve got to leave the comfort of our given lanes and venture off the path to new places. We’ve also got to bring others along with us. Lastly I feel it’s vital to ensure that when our path crosses those who have been there before us that we first listen to their wisdom and understand their perspective.
Use the following contact form to contact W.D.Orkoskey.