Itha is the Senior Civic Innovation Specialist at the City of Pittsburgh, Department of Innovation and Performance, where she leads the City’s Civic Tech efforts through external partnerships and is the program manager of PGHLab, the City’s urban incubator for startups. Prior to her current role, Itha served as a Policy Analyst for Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto, Office of Equity, focusing on special programs and initiatives that impacted vulnerable communities: digital equity and inclusion, food insecurity, land recycling, and Asian American affairs.
She is also the chef and sole owner of The Hungry Cao, offering Chinese cooking classes and private events that since 2017 has had the dual mission of elevating the standing of ethnic Chinese cuisine in Pittsburgh and fundraising for an intersectional social justice cause.
Itha believes in civic engagement through diverse representation and currently serves as the Impact Officer for the World Economic Forum’s Pittsburgh Global Shapers community, is a Commissioner on Governor Wolf’s Commission for Women, and serves on the Boards of: Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation, Civically, Vibrant Pittsburgh, the Women’s Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh, and the Pittsburgh Urban Magnate (PUMP). She is also a proud high school mentor in the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program.