40 Under 40: 2016
Meet our 2016 class of 40 Pittsburghers Under 40 who are changing our region – and the world – for the better.
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Clinique Brundidge 
Senior materials scientist And Engineer, Bechtel Marine Propulsion Corporation
Eight years ago, Detroit-raised Clinique Brundidge was driving through western Pennsylvania when she saw a scarecrow dressed up as Troy Polamalu. She just knew she had to try living in a place where someone would do that.
Today, she is the senior materials scientist and engineer at Bechtel Marine Propulsion Corporation, developing the gear that goes into nuclear reactors for the U.S. Navy.
The path from a childhood in Detroit to a Ph.D. passed through the University of Michigan, where she became the first African-American woman to letter in swimming all four years. Today, she continues to promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics in socioeconomically challenged neighborhoods.
STEM education, she says, is a path forward in life. And, yes, when she travels on game days, Brundidge always boards the plane wearing her Steelers gear.
If I had it to do over ... I would have majored in manufacturing engineering rather than materials science and engineering. Those guys seem to have more fun!
Ngani Ndimbie 
Women in Transportation Fellow, Traffic21
In a city where bike-motorist relations often amounts to mobile combat — two wheels versus four — Ngani Ndimbie has taken up the cause of making sure the value of an old-fashioned bicycle and the person riding it get a full hearing before decision-makers.
As former communications manager for BikePGH, Ndimbie mobilized advocates, grabbed the attention of lawmakers and demanded safety for cyclists and pedestrians as the City of Pittsburgh transitions to a new era of personal transportation.
She came to Pittsburgh from Florida and immediately went to work as a community activist. Her resume includes stints at the Coro Pittsbugh foundation, where she was a Community Problem Solving Fellow; at Regional Equity Monitoring Project, where she was a project assistant; and the ACLU, where she worked as a community organizer.
A resident of Bloomfield, she helped to start Bloomfield Livable Streets, leading community cleanups and, as ever, bike-pedestrian-motorist diplomacy.
If I had a second chance ... [I’d] take a journalism class while in college.
Derrick L. Tillman 
President & CEO, Bridging the Gap Development, LLC
Housing and jobs remain essential concerns for Pittsburgh’s minority community, and Derrick Tillman’s real estate company — Bridging the Gap Development — is addressing those needs.
The firm builds new construction and rehabilitates affordable, market-rate, mixed-income housing.
He previously ran a weatherization business that went from zero to $1 million in revenue before he sold his interest.
Since then, he has focused on bringing development projects, both housing and commercial, to parts of the city where they can have the greatest economic impact. One ongoing project includes building and/or rehabbing 36 units of affordable housing in the Hill District and will focus on providing homes and careers to residents.
Success did not come easily, but as he’s pleased to point out, Tillman once was a Section 8 housing resident. Today, he’s a Section 8 housing landlord and a real estate developer.
You’d be surprised to know ... I had to deliver my son at our home on the bathroom floor because we didn’t make it to the hospital in time.
As do many of our 40 Under 40 honorees, the Pittsburgh Pirates — which operate PNC Park, our shoot location this year — seek to provide opportunities that better the lives of future generations.
The Pirates do this through many philanthropic pursuits, including Fields for Kids, which provides financial support to improve youth baseball or softball facilities, and by supporting Miracle League field programs, which help children with special needs to play baseball.
During the 2016 Pirates season, 2 million people visited the ballpark, which seats about 38,000 people, allowing plenty of opportunities to give back to the kids.
–– Amanda Reed
photo by Dave DiCello