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Founder and Managing Director | he/him

Julius is responsible for working collaboratively with the community, funders, staff and has ultimate responsibility for the overall management of Steel Smiling including operations, fundraising, financial management, hiring and personnel management, external relations, vendor management, grant making/strategic investments and evaluation/outcomes/quality assurance. Prior to his work with Steel Smiling, he served in the following roles: Executive Director, Community-Based Mental Health Therapist, Mobile Therapist, Behavioral Specialist Consultant, Community Engagement Associate, and Therapeutic Staff Support.


Julius is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with the State Board of Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists and Professional Counselors. He obtained his Master of Social Work degree with a Certificate in Human Services Management from the University of Pittsburgh. Mr. Boatwright earned a bachelor's degree in communication from Pitt as well. Julius also completed a Trauma-Informed Community Practice Program with Duquesne University through their Department of Psychology and Rita McGinley Clinic. 

He's a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT-200) through the international credentialing body, The Yoga Alliance. Lastly, Julius completed a 1-year professional development program for nonprofit executives with Leadership Pittsburgh and the California-based Rockwood Leadership Institute.

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Program Manager of Wellness Services | she/her

As the Program Manager of Wellness Services at Steel Smiling, Robin is responsible for providing clinical support to the Black Mental Health Fund, co-facilitating the Beams to Bridges Program, conducting referral intakes, providing check-ins to community members and providing group and individual non formal mental health support.

She brings over twenty years of experience in the mental health field, where she has provided Drug and Alcohol counseling and program management for a Maternal Addiction Program Youth Homeless Shelter.  Robin is also the Sole Proprietor of 4 Wellness , an organization that provides consulting services, training to organizations on mental wellness, psychoeducational classes to the community on Mental Health as well as conflict resolution to individuals and groups.

Robin obtained an undergraduate degree from Duquesne University in Political Science and holds a Micro-Master in Substance Abuse and Trauma Informed Care. She also has a Masters of Science in Professional Counseling from Carlow University and is a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional.

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Courtney Abegunde, MA

Operations Director | she/her

Courtney Abegunde (she/her) is a mental health educator, support group facilitator, and advocate serving and supporting communities in Pittsburgh for the last 15 years. Courtney has served as a mental health/substance use counselor for justice-involved youth and adults participating in Medication-assisted treatment for Opiate dependence, and as program coordinator for specialized services for teens and young adults newly experiencing psychosis or who have recently been diagnosed with a Serious Mental Illness (like Schizophrenia). Courtney has a depth of experience in the areas of community engagement, outreach and education, counseling, program evaluation and quality improvement, program development, mutual aid and peer support. Courtney holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master of Arts in Psychology from Chatham University. Courtney has delivered trainings and workshops on Recovery Oriented Systems of Care, Early Intervention for First Episode Psychosis, Cultural Competence and Humility for Mental Healthcare Providers, Improving Mental Health Service Systems for Black Folks, and Healing Justice Strategies for Black Mental Health and Wellness. She has been recognized as a Dignity and Respect Champion by UMPC (2021) and has achieved the Excellence in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Award from the University of Pittsburgh Department of Psychiatry (2021) and the Women’s Health and Leadership Award from Chatham University (2015).


Courtney currently serves as Operations Director for Steel Smiling, a Black-led “Organization in Residence” of Neighborhood Allies. Courtney furthers Steel Smiling’s mission of exposing Black Pittsburghers to at least one positive mental health experience by 2030 by supporting the daily operations of their flagship programs Beams to Bridges (a 6-month community mental health advocate training program) and Steel Healing (Wellness navigation, peer support, financial assistance for care for Black Pittsburgh residents). Courtney uses her personal experience of racism, mental health problems, and journey towards mental wellness and healing to inform her work and approaches.

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