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Neighborhood Conversations [clear filter]
Tuesday, October 13
 

10:30am

Neighborhood Conversations Part 1: Gowanus A - Promoting Community Engagement in Green Infrastructure

Option A: Promoting Community Engagement in Green Infrastructure 

The Gowanus Canal, one of the most heavily polluted waterways in the United States at the center of a rapidly redeveloping neighborhood, has become a focus of resident-led education, advocacy, and improvements in recent years. On this tour, we’ll go to the banks of the Gowanus to learn from Andrea Parker, Executive Director of the Gowanus Canal Conservancy, which activates over 1,000 local volunteers each year in its mission to transform the Gowanus into a clean, living waterway. Leif Percifield, self-proclaimed mad citizen scientist and founder of the Don’t Flush Me project, will discuss how he uses technology to educate residents of their personal water-use impacts on the Gowanus, and his experiences crowdfunding his work and finding support within a community of makers. We’ll conclude the visit at one of the neighborhood’s most active community gardens to hear from Judy Janda, President and Co-Founder of Greenspace on Fourth, who will discuss the green infrastructure work undertaken by her group and other self-organized, resident-led groups.

 

(Includes about 15-20 minutes of walking total; seating will be provided at discussion sites.)


Speakers
avatar for Judy Janda

Judy Janda

President and Co-Founder, Greenspace on Fourth
Judy Janda engaged in negotiations for almost 20 years with Community Board 6 and NYC Department of Environmental Protection to access the GreenSpace on Fourth Community Garden space on a watershaft location for Water Tunnel #3 as a native plant garden. She has been active with the... Read More →
avatar for Andrea Parker

Andrea Parker

Executive Director, Gowanus Canal Conservancy
Andrea Parker has a passion for regenerating urban green infrastructure through civic engagement. As the Executive Director of the Gowanus Canal Conservancy, she works to empower a community of environmental stewards and design advocates in the rapidly changing urban ecology of the... Read More →
avatar for Leif Percifield

Leif Percifield

Mad Citizen Scientist and founder of the Don’t Flush Me project
Leif Percifield is the creator of DontFlush.Me, a project that provides realtime sensing and alert systems for water pollution and Visualight a wifi enabled lightbulb capable of displaying information as colored light. Before completing a MFA at Parsons, in Design and Technology... Read More →


Tuesday October 13, 2015 10:30am - 12:00pm
Gowanus Neighborhood Conversation The Conversation will be in Gowanus, Brooklyn, but depart from Brooklyn Historical Society

10:30am

Neighborhood Conversations Part 1: Gowanus B - Innovating Advocacy: Biking, Placemaking and Transit in NYC

Option B: Innovating Advocacy: Biking, Placemaking and Transit in NYC 

This conversation begins with local resident transit activist Grace Freedman, past leader of the Fix this Public Space! ioby project, who will discuss how she has paired creative re-envisioning with traditional grassroots advocacy with the Fourth on Fourth Avenue Committee. We’ll stop by the Old Stone House, a historical site and cultural, to discuss creative advocacy around NYC’s biking and transit. The innovative leaders behind the Biking Public Project and Bikesplorations will join us for the conversation.

(Includes about 10 minutes of walking total; seating will be provided at discussion site.)


Speakers
avatar for Grace Freedman

Grace Freedman

Resident Transit Activist, Forth on Fourth Avenue Committee


Tuesday October 13, 2015 10:30am - 12:00pm
Gowanus Neighborhood Conversation The Conversation will be in Gowanus, Brooklyn, but depart from Brooklyn Historical Society

10:30am

Neighborhood Conversations Part 1: Gowanus C - Public Housing Voices in a Rapidly Changing Neighborhood
The Gowanus/Boerum Hill neighborhood of Brooklyn is an intensely contaminated community that is simultaneously undergoing multiple processes of environmental remediation and gentrification. The 4,500+ public housing residents of this neighborhood face unique challenges including environmental racism; poor housing conditions and disproportionate impacts from extreme weather associated with climate change. In this Neighborhood Conversation, we’ll explore these dynamics and the challenges and opportunities posed by the Gowanus Canal Superfund Clean Up, neighborhood combined sewage overflow (CSO) issues, the remediation of several manufactured gas plant sites, the rapid disappearance of commercial establishments and services that are affordable to low- and moderate-income households and the recently announced housing authority plan to build market-rate apartments in the parking lots of Wyckoff Gardens. Attendees will also learn about the Turning the Tide initiative, a multi-neighborhood effort that focuses on building social and environmental resiliency in five Brooklyn public housing developments. The Conversation will be hosted by staff and members of FUREE (Families United for Racial and Economic Justice), who organize low-income families to fight for a seat at the decision-making table, mobilize voters around community-identified demands, and win economic justice battles for residents of Gowanus-area public housing. FUREE leaders will be joined by staff of the 5th Avenue Committee, a community development corporation with a long history of community organizing that works to advance economic and social justice, advocate for affordable housing, and combat displacement caused by gentrification.

Speakers
avatar for Sabine Aronowsky

Sabine Aronowsky

Campaign Manager of the South Brooklyn Accountable Development Initiative, Fifth Avenue Committee
Sabine Aronowsky joined Fifth Avenue Committee (FAC) in 2013 and is the Campaign Manager of the South Brooklyn Accountable Development Initiative (SBADI). SBADI engages low- and moderate-income residents in local public processes to ensure accountability by government and private... Read More →
avatar for Beverly Corbin

Beverly Corbin

Activist, FUREE
Beverly Corbin resident of Wyckoff Gardens for 30 years and FUREE activist for 12 years
avatar for Theresa Davis

Theresa Davis

Activist, FUREE
Theresa Davis is a resident of the Gowanus Houses and a FUREE activist.
avatar for Michael Higgins, Jr.

Michael Higgins, Jr.

Community Organizer and Gowanus resident, Families United for Racial and Economic Justice
Michael Higgins Jr. is a member turned organizer at FUREE, Families United for Racial and Economic Equality. A native of Fort Greene, Michael works with public housing tenants in developments around Downtown Brooklyn, building power in low-income communities around issues of accountable... Read More →



Tuesday October 13, 2015 10:30am - 12:00pm
Gowanus Neighborhood Conversation The Conversation will be in Gowanus, Brooklyn, but depart from Brooklyn Historical Society
 
Wednesday, October 14
 

1:00pm

Neighborhood Conversations Part 2: Option A - Local Movement Building and System Change: Community Gardens and Racial Equity in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn

Option A: Local Movement Building and System Change: Community Gardens and Racial Equity in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn

Visit the 462 Halsey Community Garden in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn to hear from the garden’s co-founder Shatia Strother on why she founded the garden and how it has been resourced, including her experience securing seed-funding from neighbors through an ioby campaign. She’ll also discuss how a small-scale project that promotes neighborhood connection and food justice connects to the Black Lives Matter movement. Arif Ullah, Program Director of Programs at Citizens Committee of NYC, will discuss his organization’s model for delivering resources to neighborhood groups. We’ll then be joined for a conversation with Ms. Strother’s fellow activists from the Brooklyn Movement Center and Black Alliance for Just Immigration, who will discuss issues of race and equity in Brooklyn. We’ll walk to the Central Bainbridge Street Community Garden, established in 1978, where we will meet with the garden’s leaders and learn more about the history of food justice in Bed-Stuy.

 

(Bus to site; Includes about 15 minutes of walking total; seating will be provided at both discussion sites.)


Speakers
avatar for Mark Winston Griffith

Mark Winston Griffith

Brooklyn Movement Center
Prior to coming on staff at the Brooklyn Movement Center, Mark was on the Faculty of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and was most recently the field organizer for the MOVE NY campaign. A Central Brooklyn native, Mark Winston Griffith is the former Executive Director and Senior... Read More →
avatar for Demetrice Mills

Demetrice Mills

Community Leader and Board President, Brooklyn Queens Land Trust
Retired Business System Analyst of JPMorgan Chase where he worked for 25 years in the Corporate Trust Division (Information System). A member of Brooklyn Queens Land Trust since 2006, BQLT owns, operates, and steward 34 community gardens in Brooklyn and Queens. BQLT also lease 2... Read More →
avatar for Shatia Strother

Shatia Strother

Founder, 462 Halsey Community Garden
Shatia Strother is a Bed-Stuy native and resident who's life passion is maintaining the history and culture of communities of color through activism in social, food and environmental justice issues. Her role as mother and wife has lead her towards a path of intentional radicalism... Read More →
avatar for Arif Ullah

Arif Ullah

Director of Programs, Citizens' Committee for NYC
Born in Bangladesh and raised in Queens, Arif is a typical immigrant New Yorker. He manages Citizens Committee's programs, including grants, workshops, and project planning. He is on the boards of Farm School NYC and the Brooklyn Food Coalition. Prior to Citizens Committee, Arif worked... Read More →


Wednesday October 14, 2015 1:00pm - 3:00pm
Bed-Stuy Neighborhood Conversation The Conversation will be in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, but depart from Brooklyn Historical Society