Jonathan Kersting Pittsburgh Technology Council

By Jonathan Kersting, Vice President of Communications and Media, Pittsburgh Technology Council

Pittsburgh lost one of its greatest tech heroes this fall. I was heartbroken when I received the news that Jack Roseman passed away this past October. He was 88 years young. I first met Jack back in 1997 when he was a contributing columnist for this magazine. I was in charge of editing and proofreading his column.

In case you didn’t know Jack, he was one of Pittsburgh’s first serial tech entrepreneurs, turned professor, turned mentor, but mostly known as a true-to-life mensch! Over two decades, I was one of the lucky people who had a somewhat regular lunch meeting with Jack at either Cafe Sam or Ricco’s where he held court.

Every lunch started with Jack asking me about me. He was always concerned if I was doing well both professionally and personally. After ordering lunch, he would get down to business and ask me how the Pittsburgh Technology Council was doing. He always wondered how TEQ’s advertising budget was holding up. Most importantly, he always asked how he could be helpful.

At my last lunch meeting with Jack, we discussed how to promote his new book “Jump.” I couldn’t wait to publish excerpts of it in TEQ. Getting his manna and wisdom back in our pages would be a treat and inspiration to our readers.

Attending his funeral, my sadness miraculously turned to happiness. It seems weird, but Jack wasn’t “dead” at all. I felt this positive rush of energy as mourners recounted their “Jack” stories. Every story ended with a hearty laugh. Smiles would emerge from long-drawn faces. The theme was consistent: he had an enormous, positive impact on everyone. Besides the impact Jack had on our lives, he also lives on with his wisdom in both of his books, “Outrageous Optimism” and “Jump.”

I suggest that you read them and (re)discover one of the world’s kindest, smartest men. And a true Pittsburgh tech hero!