Tuesday night and we’ve got another #30Under30PHL– everyone meet Mary Pitek! As someone who’s “critically consumed with forming spaces (physically or virtually) that enhance genuine human interaction and in turn strengthens relationships and community,” Mary is one of Philly’s phenomenal women during our 30 day series. Learn more about her below!


1. How old are you?
27, going on 12.

2. What do you do?
An operations guru by day for an online financial publication, Advisor Perspectives. A pineapple-crazed, community-obsessed connoisseur of The Welcoming Committee by every other minute of the day/night. Co-community manager for Philly and part of the nationwide expansion team. The Welcoming Committee’s mission is simple: build LGBTQ community and bring it absolutely everywhere in a fun and comfortable way. TWC is currently in Boston, Philly and DC. On Oct 3rd we launch in Chicago, Atlanta and San Francisco and are planning on being in the 15 biggest metro areas by the end of 2015. My two worlds may not seem like a normal match, but really what’s#normal?! They both fit in my life because I am critically consumed with forming spaces (physically or virtually) that enhance genuine human interaction and in turn strengthens relationships and community.

3. What neighborhood in Philly do you call home?
GHo — grad hospital, y’all.

4. What is your favorite thing right now about Philly?
There seems to be this buzz around the city of welcoming, activity, and support. Philly feels collective.

5. What do you consider your greatest achievement thus far?
Other than nailing my suzuki violin recital to a Mozart concerto at age 17, I guess it would be actually feeling like I’ve made an impact in people’s lives. The first time I realized I made an impact with people was in college when I was voted “Most Motivational” for my rowing team; an award that only a few people (rowers or coxswains) in the team’s 40 year history have ever received two consecutive years, and I was the only coxswain ever to receive it twice.

6. If not yourself, who would you like to be?
My dog, Haven. She has the best life.

7. Your idea of happiness.
Having energy to make change. Having time for loved ones. And being curious.

8. Guiltiest pleasure?
Pickles, chips (all the chips) and homemade popcorn on the stove. All at the same time, ideally.

9. Favorite inspirational quote?
From a letter from my mom maybe 8ish years ago: “You are a remarkable person who has more to contribute to the world than just a race. Your spirit, kindness and creative thinking will make a difference where it counts, in the future. I love you” -Mom

10. What do you appreciate the most in your friends?
Showing up. In so many ways people’s presence and support speaks the most volume to me.

11. Favorite food in Philly?
I really like Barbuzzo and Vedge.

12. Favorite drink in Philly?
Basilic from Parc or perfect manhattan from Side Car.

13. Favorite song right now?
Well, I have three. When I am running I put on (I’m a weirdo and sprint to slow music) “CPR/Claws Pt. 2” by Typhoon. If I am getting ready to go out it’s “All About That Bass” by Meghan Trainor. And any other time it is “Coffee” by Sylvan Esso.

14. A book you plan on reading?
Confessions of a Failed Southern Lady (Just ordered it and CAN NOT WAIT to read it!)

15. A book that powerfully impacted your life?
The Death and Life of Great American Cities

16. Name one historical figure you would like to have coffee with.
Frederick Law Olmsted.

17. How do you like your coffee?
It changes by season and time of day. But either a latte or an americano, with room.

18. Your main fault.
Knowing zero idioms. And (incorrectly) combining idioms when I try to use them.

19. What is your most prized material possession?
Probably my Buffalo bills clothing collection (I have an entire steamer trunk.)

20. Your biggest failure.
Hurting someone I loved.

21. What you learned from that failure?
To not do that.

22. What is your greatest fear?
Disappointing people.

23. Where will you be in 30 years?
My mom once told me I would be fine and “find my people” anywhere I go. So I think it is less about where and more about the “what.” I want to be engaged in building community. Living and loving my city. Supporting and caring for my family. And still be the friend who you invite to travel the world with just, because.

24. Favorite thing to do on a Sunday?
Honestly it runs a wide spectrum: brunch, urban exploring, farmer’s markets, kickball, watching the Bills game, slip & flip cup, wine by a fire to decompress before the week. But all must include friends. #sundayfunday

25. Best date spot?
I really like going on double date adventures – sunset sails, wine & cheese in a park, games, etc. But if I am going to do something “traditional” a movie at the Ritz in Old City and dinner at Talula’s Garden is pretty fun. But I usually mess up dates (i.e. forget tickets or mess up where we are going) but maybe that’s part of my “charm”?!

26. What does happiness mean to you?
Having energy to make change. Having time for loved ones. And having curiosity to ask questions.

27. Twitter or Instagram?
I need to get my Twitter game back. So, insta for now!!

28. Describe Philly in a Tweet.
Neighborhood stoop parties. Streets stolen from story books. Smelly & beautiful. Filled with community, you just have to find it. Fun. Accessible. Never dull. Silly liquor laws. Feeling like home.

29. Who should everyone follow on Instagram?
@thefatjewish or @buffalony (because I am from there and it makes me nostalgic)

30. Pats or Genos?
The new hummus spot on 16th and sansom — Dizengoff. But fine, Pats.

#30Under30PHL is a month-long series highlighting Philadelphia’s most ambitious women. Created in collaboration with Femme & Fortune and Alex Kacala.