She’s 11 weeks in as GTECH’s first Executive Director (after previously serving as COO). Born in South Africa to a Scottish mother and Chinese father, Evaine grew up in the rural town of Keedysville, MD and moved to Pittsburgh after college. A resident of East Allegheny—sandwiched between historic sites like Teutonia Männerchor and Penn Brewery—Evaine loves being able to walk to the North Shore attractions, Downtown and the Strip. On April 21, GTECH is celebrating 10 years of transforming vacant, underutilized spaces into thriving places for all, and you’re invited to the party (read on for the special discount code).
Monday, March 20
Mondays are tough, but there’s nothing to it but to get up and get moving. My days start with checking in with all my news subscriptions to stay informed, and then I’m out the door by 7:15 a.m. I like to catch up on emails and outline my to-do list before my team comes in at 9 a.m., since I have only been the Executive Director at GTECH for 11 weeks (but who’s counting?) and am still getting into the swing of things.
As much as possible, I bring my CCO (Chief Canine Officer) to work with me—Wickett the wheaten—but unfortunately this week is full of after-hours meetings, so not today.
After work, I have two stops to make. First, at AWESOME Pittsburgh’s pitch party at Ascender, supporting fellow GTECHer Shequaya Bailey as a guest judge, and then shooting over to Knoxville for a Land Bank public meeting at St. Paul AME Church.
Tuesday, March 21
Every so often I will join my husband and some of his colleagues from Allen & Shariff at La Prima in the Strip for some very early coffee. It gets me up and moving in time for my next stop at Stout Training on 17th Street.
After that, I’ll head to the office in Larimer to catch up with the team on active projects. Today we get to practice hauling a trailer around the block—getting ready for the launch of the Pgh Mobile Toolbox.
The highlight of my day will be WHIRL Magazine’s 13 Under 30 celebration at Redbeard’s Downtown to support my friend and finalist, Barbie Arroyo, emergency management planner for the City of Pittsburgh.
Wednesday, March 22
Another early morning start with our bimonthly GTECH board meeting first thing, and then meeting my friend Dan for lunch at Pho Minh in Garfield, since it’s his birthday and he works just around the corner in Bakery Square.
The evening is dedicated to our ReClaim Central program—working with residents in the Middle Hill with partners from FOCUS and Bedford Dwellings. Tonight is a good one because a few of my fellow landscape architects are volunteering their time to help our participants visualize their ideas on paper. Vacant lot projects come to life—always a highlight of our Ambassador program.
Thursday, March 23
With dog in tow, I will stop at Everyday Café for a latte on my way to the office for a staff meeting and project work.
Then back to GTECH to teach a professional development class at the office—Mapping 101 with GIS.
Friday, March 24
In the afternoon, I’ll head to the Heinz History Center for a walk-through with their Director of Events, Maura Minteer, and our event planner from Easy Street Promotions, to work on details for GTECH’s 10th anniversary celebration Grounded for Good (join us on April 21—use discount code NextUP online!).
Since it’s been a long week, my evening will be low-key—hanging out with Watson [Evaine’s husband Chris] and Wickett and some of our favorites from Legends of the North Shore, just a few blocks away.
Saturday, March 25
The day begins with breakfast at Arnold’s Tea on East Ohio Street, then chores at home.
At lunchtime, I’ll head to the Grayson Center for another Land Bank public meeting.
The rest of day will be spent vegging out with a great book. In the evening, we’ll head east to have dinner at Ease with friends.
Sunday, March 26
Since my birthday is on Tuesday, but I’m headed to DC tomorrow for the annual NCRC Conference, I’m going to pretend that today is my birthday. This means a whole day of things I find fun. This will include a walk over the 16th Street Bridge to have breakfast at Pamela’s, and a stop at Mon Aimee Chocolat (it is my fake birthday after all).
If I can find some friends to humor me, I’ll head over to Arsenal Bowl for their Sundaze special, grab a snack and do some window (or actual) shopping at a few of my favorite Lawrenceville stores like Pavement and Wildcard.
My birthday also marks the time we start seriously planning our next vacation, so an evening of travel research and a quiet meal with my husband will round out the week.
Some laundry for my trip, and I’m ready to tackle Monday again.
See who else is NEXT Up here.
Have a suggestion for NEXT Up? Email us with suggestions!