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2024 Dealmakers of the Year Honorees

Presented By: Fort Pitt Capital Group LLC


Clayton Kendall

Provider of marketing supply chain programs for multi-location companies

  • PNC Riverarch Capital Invests in Clayton Kendall
  • Metz Lewis Brodman, Must O’Keefe LLC, Confluence Advisors, and Riveron advised on the deal



CEO & Co-Founder
BEAM Collaborative

BEAM Collaborative scales minority businesses in Southwestern Pennsylvania that drive economic development in underserved communities. BEAM creates strategic partnerships between large regional institutions and small minority owned businesses that generate job creation and regional growth. 

BEAM implements four core strategies:

  • Build businesses that match anchor needs
  • Expand existing businesses to meet growing demand
  • Attract businesses to the region
  • Merge or acquire businesses going through transition


JOE CARDOSI         
Free Health Market

Developer of a care-driven marketplace designed to streamline the complex and opaque specialty medication fulfillment process.

  • Raised $20 million of Series B venture funding in a deal led by Questa Capital, as announced on November 1, 2023.


Distributor Service, Inc. (DSI)

Manufacturer of architectural wood and specialized building products for the woodworking industry.

  • The company was acquired by Hood Industries for an undisclosed amount in December of 2023.
  • Metz Lewis Brodman Must O’Keefe LLC and Confluence Advisors


Executive Director  

A venture capital firm that seeks to invest in the technology sector across the rust belt region.

  • Invested in numerous companies in 2022 and 2023, including an $11.79M seed round, a $10.00M, later-stage Series A1, and a $10.42M seed round.


Entrepreneur in Residence & Faculty Member
Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University

Was previously the co-founder of Wigle Whiskey Distillery and Threadbare Cider & Mead. Producer of inventive, high quality American whiskey, spirits, ciders and mead. Wigle Whiskey was Pennsylvania’s first direct-to-consumer spirits company since Prohibition. Wigle grew into the top 10% of craft spirits producers nationally with distribution reaching into more than a dozen states. The Distillery was the most awarded Craft Whiskey Distillery in the US By the American Craft Spirits Association for seven years and was one of a handful of distilleries to be twice honored by the James Beard Foundation. Meredith and her husband, Alex Grelli, worked relentlessly to change the regulatory environment in which Pennsylvania producers operate--creating a new business framework and marketplace for craft spirits in the State. The company also worked to restore Pittsburgh’s legacy as the Birthplace of American Whiskey, and support regional agricultural, social and economic systems. 

  • Sold to the Nutting Company Ventures in January 2023 



Developer of a combined intelligence legal platform designed to understand and negotiate contracts.

  • Carrick Capital Partners acquired LegalSifter in March of 2023
  • The transaction represented a profitable exit of a well known local technology company with roots in CMU and in which numerous local prominent angel investors and VC funds were investors


Managing Partner

Continuim Equity Partners

Continuim Equity Partners is a Pittsburgh-based private equity firm that focuses on acquiring and supporting the transformative growth of successful family and founder-owned manufacturing and industrial businesses.

  • Continuim is proud to have supported the growth of Merlot Vango Tarping Solutions, and to have successfully realized the investment with the sale to Safe Fleet in August, 2023



Chief Executive Officer
African American Chamber of Commerce W. PA

A full-service organization that continuously provides access and opportunity to more than 500 African American business owners and professionals.

  • Membership includes other minority groups, over 60 non-profit organizations, and over 50 majority businesses
  • Boundaries extend from Cambria County, up to Erie, PA over to the Ohio border, and down to West Virginia. Forty major corporations serve as sponsors, as we work to achieve economic parity for the membership 

Conference Location

600 Commonwealth Place
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
Tel: (412) 391-4600