New Regional Exec, an Ordained Minister, to Oversee Nine Prisons

By Bauder, Bob | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, December 31, 2011 | Go to article overview

New Regional Exec, an Ordained Minister, to Oversee Nine Prisons


Bauder, Bob, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


David Pitkins said his roots in Pittsburgh and his background in faith and education have prepared him well to move up in the state Department of Corrections hierarchy.

The department on Friday announced it promoted Pitkins, a 1970 Hampton High School graduate and ordained minister, to regional deputy secretary overseeing nine state prisons in Western Pennsylvania, including ones in Pittsburgh and Greensburg.

"Growing up in Pittsburgh, I learned about labor management issues," said Pitkins, 59, who has a large picture of the late Pirates legend Roberto Clemente on his office wall. "I think that's helped me over the years."

Pitkins, who lives in Johnstown and still has family in the Pittsburgh area, said he spent his childhood in Glassport and McKeesport. His family later moved to Hampton. He earned a bachelor's degree in religious studies from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va. He also has a master's degree in counseling and religious education and a doctorate of ministry in ancient Greek manuscripts, both from Covington Seminary in Rossville, Ga.

"The powers of observation and communication and human behavior are basically what most of my studies were in," he said. After 23 years with the Corrections Department, "You learn people and how people are. ... (Corrections) is a people business."

He served as a pastor at Anthony Baptist Church in Jersey Shore and at Faith Chapel in Johnstown. …

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