Activist of the Year
Meet Bethany Hallam
Allegheny County Councilperson, At-Large, Bethany Hallam is a native Pittsburgher. She graduated from North Hills High School in 2008, and from Duquesne University in 2012 with a B.A. in Public Relations and Spanish.
Hallam is serving her first term on Allegheny County Council and also holds a full-time position as the Director of Operations at a community center and small business service hub in Wilkinsburg.
While playing varsity lacrosse for North Hills High School, I tore both my ACL’s, one immediately after recovering from the other. At the time, the overdose epidemic was not as well known as it is today.She was over-prescribed Vicodin, and as a result, became addicted to prescription opioids. Halllam began her recovery in 2016, and is fortunate for the support systems that helped make that possible.
Due to her struggles with addiction, she spent time in our county jail and lost her driver’s license for ten years. She has seen first-hand the problems in our jail, and also understand how critical public transit is to so many Allegheny County residents, herself included.
Councilperson Hallam uses her position as an elected official to speak all around Pennsylvania about the unjust treatment of those in our criminal legal system and, specifically people of color and lower-income populations. Serving on Allegheny County’s Jail Oversight Board, she uses her lived experiences to advocate for better jail conditions. She also serves as the Chair of Allegheny County Council’s Appointment Review Committee, where she is working to ensure those appointed to the myriad boards, authorities, and commissions throughout the county are and remain committed to the vision of a more justice, equitable, and inclusive Allegheny County.