Of Forest Hills, age 58, passed away at home on Sunday, March 21, 2021, after a short illness. Alan was the loving husband of Liz Adams; Alan and Liz were together for 26 years. Alan is also survived by his sister-in-law, Susan Sommers, and her children, John, Katherine, and Patrick. Alan was a caring and supportive brother-in-law, and took his role as uncle to John, Katherine, and Patrick to heart.
Alan graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in 1980. While in high school, Alan developed his life-long love of music. He played clarinet in the high school marching band.
Alan earned a BA in Journalism from Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 1984. He launched his career in journalism in Beckley, West Virginia, as a reporter and editor for the Beckley Register-Herald. Alan returned to Pittsburgh in 1994 as the editor of the Pittsburgh City Paper. Alan subsequently worked for Gateway Press, where for more than a decade he was the editor of the Times Express (Monroeville-Pitcairn), Penn Hills Progress, Woodland Progress (Woodland Hills), and the Coraopolis Record. Following the purchase of Gateway Press by Trib Total Media, Alan held a series of editorial positions at the Tribune-Review, including serving as editor of the Sunday Opinion & Commentary section “A Page of Books.” Most recently, Alan was a freelance editor for Postindustrial, an independent regional journalism outlet.
Alan received several state and regional awards for his editorial writing, including the Golden Quill Award, the Keystone Press Award, and recognition from the Society of Professional Journalists.
Since 2019, Alan served as an adjunct instructor in the College of Business Administration at the University of Pittsburgh teaching "Fundamentals of Business Communication" to undergraduate business students. Throughout his career, Alan was passionate about helping younger people develop their writing skills. Much as Alan mentored young reporters, he taught business students to write correctly and clearly.
Alan loved Pittsburgh, his friends, hockey, the Grateful Dead, reading, the home he and Liz created together, and the many cats who shared his life over the years. He is gone far too soon. Memorial plans for Alan are not finalized at this time. Gifts in Alan’s memory may be given to The Family Hospice Foundation of Pittsburgh or Pet Helpers Animal Rescue of Fairmont, WV.
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Family Hospice Foundation
700 Bower Hill Road, Suite 1405, Pittsburgh PA 15243
726 East Park Ave PMB 311, Fairmont WV 26554