Rich Fitzgerald joined the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission (SPC) as Executive Director in January 2024. As Executive Director, Rich leads a team of 50 staff members that perform the organization’s planning and development work in the areas of transportation, infrastructure, and economic and workforce development. Specifically, he overseas the organization’s strategic efforts to support our local counties and municipalities access an estimated $39 billion in state and federal transportation and economic development funding that has been allocated to the region through 2045.
Prior to leading SPC, Rich most recently served as Allegheny County Executive for three consecutive terms for a total of 12 years. During his tenure as County Executive, Rich was focused on growing, diversifying, and modernizing the economy, retaining and attracting younger workers, investing in transportation and infrastructure, and improving the county’s public services.
When Rich took over as County Executive, the county had approximately $5 million in its fund balance; when his term ended in January 2024, it had approximately $50 million in its balance. While serving as County Executive, Rich fiercely advocated for infrastructure improvements that would benefit the entire region, including Pittsburgh International Airport’s $1.5 billion modernization project that is currently underway. Additionally, he worked to secure much-needed funding to repair county bridges and for Pittsburgh Regional Transit’s University Line that will connect Oakland/the University district to downtown Pittsburgh.
Prior to serving as County Executive, Rich served on county council for 12 years. He was elected to county council as one of the inaugural members in 2000 and was elected four times as council president. He served as county council president from 2004 to 2011.
Before entering public service, Rich spent many years working in the private sector. He founded and ran his own business, a water treatment services and equipment company. He grew up in Pittsburgh’s Bloomfield-Garfield neighborhood and attended Carnegie Mellon University. There, he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering with a minor in business. He and his wife, Cathy, live in Squirrel Hill and are the proud parents of eight adult children.