The Pittsburgh Social Exchange Interview

Published On November 14, 2012 | By Kymbo Slice | Interviews

The Pittsburgh Social Exchange is responsible for hosting a variety of entertaining events around the city in an effort to bring individuals together with the common goal of “helping one another and giving back to the community”. These events unite entrepreneurs, young professionals, and the like in a fun, unique way. Each event is held in a different space and showcases Pittsburgh’s charm and diverse selection of venue locations. Their latest event is being touted as “Pittsburgh’s Largest Happy Hour” and is happening tonight at Wholey’s Wild Alaskan Grille in the Strip District from 6-8PM. Tickets are $45 (free for PSE memebers) and you can register here. The ticket price includes complimentary appetizers, chair massages, a Chinese auction, door prizes, a souvenir glass and your chance to mingle with some of Pittsburgh’s most successful and interesting folks. We had a chance to chat with Jamie Swarm, Assistant Events Director for the Pittsburgh Social Exchange, to learn all about the organization and what they have in store for future events.

Kymbo Slice: How did you become involved with the Pittsburgh Social Exchange?
Jamie Swarm: I first found out about The Pittsburgh Social Exchange through the website, Craigslist. The format of the internship offer caught my attention because it sounded like a very exciting environment to work in. After sending in my resume and getting a call for an interview date, I started doing research on the company and found out that The Pittsburgh Social Exchange was not a typical networking organization. They held events at unique venues and catered to a very exclusive group of clientele that no one else in the city had the capability of getting in same room together. The possibility of planning these lavish events sparked my interest and I’ve been involved in the event planning process at PSE ever since.

KS: What types of individuals do Pittsburgh Social Exchange events cater to?
JS: The glue that holds the entire organization together are the amazing people that flock to PSE events. PSE has guests ranging from local celebrities to influential business professionals from Pittsburgh and surrounding regions. The diversity of the PSE networking organization is the most influential part of the events because it sparks guests’ interests and holds their attention. With close to 400 members and countless guests, the opportunities to make new connections are endless. Meeting new and exciting attendees keeps people coming back to future events. Frequent local celebrities and influential figures in the Pittsburgh community that attend our events include: Sally Wiggin, Andrew Stockey, Sheena Monnin, Luke Ravenstahl, Rich Fitzgerald, and Bill Peduto.

KS: How does PSE select charities to work with?
JS: Every month we select a non-profit that best coincides with the theme of our event. We try to choose non-profits that come to us and express interest, or organizations that we believe PSE can help the most. Our main goal in partnering with non-profits in the Pittsburgh area is to collect items for specific organizations and help the non-profit gain the largest amount of exposure possible to our unique clientele. Some of the non-profits that we work with include: Big Brothers Big Sisters, Dress for Success, Team River Runner, and Autism Speaks.

KS: Do you have any past PSE events that are a personal favorite?
JS: My favorite PSE event was Oktoberfest at the Rivers Casino. It was my first event that I took the reigns planning myself and I think the event was flawless. Thanks to our partnership with the Pittsburgh Business Times, we had over 500 guests attend the event. With the support and help of The Rivers Casino we were able to provide PSE guests with German-themed food and drinks, as well as fun entertainment and a unique atmosphere. Guests were also provided $10 in free slot play.

KS: What can guests expect at “Pittsburgh’s Largest Happy Hour”?
JS: Pittsburgh’s Largest Happy Hour is going to be one of the best events that PSE will ever host. Luke Wholey and the amazing staff of The Wild Alaskan Grille will be providing PSE with a fine selection of seafood, and guests will be provided with a signature Clique Vodka drink called “The Ice Breaker” to sip on while socializing with Pittsburgh’s finest. The signature drink will be made in custom-made PSE glasses that will be given to the guest to keep after drinking. Massage Envy will also provide complimentary massages throughout the night.

KS: What future events does PSE have in store?
JS: The best part of PSE is that the future is always changing for the better. We have many exciting events planned for the next year, and we can only improve more as a company in the next year. In the past year we have hosted events in some of Pittsburgh’s most exclusive venues such as Phipps Conservatory, the Le Mont, and the Andy Warhol Museum. It is our goal to continue to provide the best networking opportunities available in Pittsburgh while doing our part to support the community. One of the biggest events that we are already planning for next year is our 3rd annual “Salute Your Troops Charity Gala” in September to help raise funds for various veteran charities. Although we partnered with Team River Runner in the past for this event, we are opening the doors to find a new non-profit to support this year for this event.

For more information on Pittsburgh Social Exchange and to keep up on future events, follow them on Facebook!

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