From Homeless to Hero: Pittsburgh’s Own Emmai Alaquiva Named Fox Rothschild Top CEO & Executive



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Pittsburgh CEO Who Built Digital Multimedia Agency From the Ground Named a Top CEO

Building a multi-million dollar digital multimedia agency from the ground up takes patience, talent, a great team, and humility, said Emmai Alaquiva, President and CEO of Pittsburgh-based Ya Momz House, Inc. who was recently named a 2018 Top CEO by Fox Rothschild.

Alaquiva is in the current cohort of business leaders annually recognized by law firm Fox Rothschild. The awards ceremony, “Fox Rothschild Presents 2018 Outstanding CEOs and Top Executives,” will be Wednesday, April 18, 2018, at the Westin Convention Center Hotel in downtown Pittsburgh. Tickets can be purchased on the event sponsor’s website.

“This recognition shows me that the work we are doing at Ya Momz House, Inc. is important and necessary,” Alaquiva said. “For me, CEO doesn’t necessarily stand for chief executive officer, it stands for: ‘Capitalizing on Every Opportunity’ and ‘Conquering Each Obstacle’.”

Ya Momz House, Inc. provides digital multimedia services, such as audio, video, photo, and radio. The agency works with community leaders and organizations, Fortune 500 companies, and most recently, played a crucial role in the City of Pittsburgh’s video proposal to Amazon.

“Everyone has a story to tell and we help our clients tell their stories in the best ways possible,” Alaquiva said.

Fox Rothschild admired the grit of Ya Momz House, Inc.— it is literally a company from the ground up.
As a teenager, Alaquiva, a self-taught musician, and recording engineer turned his Wilkinsburg bedroom into a music recording studio. Soon, all of his friends were asking him if they could record at his “mom’s house.”

As a young adult, Alaquiva overcame a struggle with homelessness through entrepreneurship. His teenage passions turned into “Ya Momz House, Inc.,” a recording studio (whose name recalls his earliest days serving customers). Today, Ya Momz House, Inc. is a full-service digital multimedia agency.


“Homelessness is something that I would never want anyone to experience. I want to help people make a living wage to feed their families,” said Alaquiva, whose company works with dozens of employees and contractors to complete its various projects.

After founding Ya Momz House, Inc. Alaquiva launched Hip-Hop On L.O.C.K., a music arts education program which uses the principles of hip-hop to teach students business skills and music industry knowledge. Another venture, Doc On L.O.C.K., which is supported by the Black Male Engagement (BMe) initiative, trains young filmmakers on the art of documentary filmmaking.

Alaquiva is supported by his peers in the Pittsburgh business community.

“I was excited to learn about Emmai’s well-earned recognition as one of our region’s outstanding CEOs for his distinguished track record of success as a brilliant filmmaker, minority business leader, youth educator, and a dedicated community servant. He is one of the most creative and compassionate individuals in our business community. Emmai’s personal and professional journey, overcoming many obstacles, is an inspiration for all of us,” said Scott Lammie, senior vice president and chief financial officer, UPMC Insurance Services Division.

Alaquiva is also an accomplished artist. His interactive digital photography series, “OpticVoices,” provides viewers with a unique engagement experience.  Participants view photographs depicting elements of various social movements and provide captions to the photos. Future iterations of the exhibit will include more themes.

“I am happy for all God has done for me and Ya Momz House, Inc. and I look forward to the years to come,” Alaquiva said. “The sky is not the limit!”



Congratulations, Emmai! 

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