Who We Are

Catalyst Connection is a private not-for-profit organization headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. We provide consulting and training services to small manufacturers in southwestern Pennsylvania, accelerating revenue growth and improving productivity. Through active collaboration with our clients and the manufacturing community, we contribute to the growth, vibrancy, and ongoing robustness of manufacturing in our region.

Catalyst Connection is supported, in part, by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Community and Economic Development, and by the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership.

Explore the New Manufacturing’s Purpose

For the past 20 years, Catalyst Connection has been engaged in STEM programming to build a pipeline of talent for manufacturing companies in our region.  Annually, we connect with over 60 school districts, 100 manufacturing companies, 2,000 students, and partner with over 40 regional STEM organizations. We design and develop our own programming and partner on regional and state-wide initiatives.

Our programs are currently grant funded and availalible to local school districts at no cost.

Meet Our Team

Scott Dietz

Scott Dietz

Director, Workforce Education Initiatives


Scott is responsible for the program development and delivery of Catalyst Connection’s STEM initiatives. These include an in-school project based program called Adventures in Technology and two manufacturing college internship programs. Scott is also responsible for all STEM outreach activities supporting programs such as BotsIQ, the Fluid Power Challenge, and other regional STEM initiatives in partnership with non-profits, school districts, colleges, and economic development organizations. He is a frequent speaker for school districts, industry consortiums, and conferences on the topics of STEM education, manufacturing, and workforce programs. To date, Scott has worked with more than 60 local school districts, 200 local companies, and over 2,500 regional students.

Scott has been involved in human resource and workforce education, with expertise in the manufacturing, retail, financial, and consulting industries, since 1999. As a recruiter for Mellon Financial Corporation, Dick’s Sporting Goods, and a small consulting firm, Scott has recruited technology and management talent, delivered training, developed internship programs, and conducted outreach with local nonprofit organizations and youth programs.

He holds B.S.B.A. degree in Human Resource Management from Robert Morris University

Hannah Kusenko

Hannah Kusenko

Workforce Specialist


Hannah joined Catalyst Connection in 2017 and has since done work in a variety of different departments including reporting, marketing, organizational development, and workforce development.

In her current position as Workforce Specialist, Hannah manages a variety of middle and high school student workforce programs that connect youth with local manufacturing companies. These programs fall under the Explore the New Manufacturing branding that encompasses all education initiatives created and run by Catalyst.

Hannah has a passion for creativity and uses her design skills to create engaging marketing and program collateral for these initiatives. She strives to reach more students and teachers each year to connect them with wonderful opportunities in manufacturing by continuously growing the reach of our programs through innovative marketing strategies, partner connections, and networking.

Hannah is also a consultant in the eContent Design Service Area where she uses her creativity and instructional design skills to create interactive and captivating content for clients.

Hannah holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, focused on Marketing and Communication from Slippery Rock University.

Mara Peduto

Mara Peduto

Consultant, Workforce Development


Mara joined Catalyst Connection in 2008, since then she has worked several positions focused on operational excellence, workforce development and project management.

In her current position as Workforce Development Consultant, Mara manages the current active apprentices and pre-apprentices in Catalyst’s state registered IMT program. Mara was a key player in creating and implementing both programs at the state level. Mara is certified in the CPT curriculum utilized in the apprenticeship programs. Mara also serves as a program manager for other workforce related training.

Mara holds a B.S. in Psychology from Liberty University and her M.B.A in Leadership

Nate Broadus

Nate Broadus

Workforce Specialist


In his position as Workforce Specialist, Nate engages local job seekers, community organizations and employers via the Making Your Future Initiative to create new employment pathways for a more diverse workforce.

Nate brings a proven track record of community and workforce development, and is a recent winner of Pittsburgh Magazine’s 40 Under 40 Award.  Prior to joining Catalyst, Nate served as a business account manager for the Center for Employment Opportunities, and in 2018 helped 78 formerly incarcerated people achieve their employment dreams.

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