Welcome remarks + Keynote Fireside Chat by Tiffany-Ann Taylor

Introduction: Giovania "G" Tiarachristie, Co-Chair, APA NYM Diversity Committee

Welcome: Tiffany-Ann Taylor, Co-Chair, APA NYM Diversity Committee

Opening Remarks: James Patchett, President, NYCEDC

Keynote Fireside Chat: (Moderated by G and Tiffany)

Letitia James, Public Advocate, The City of New York

Mindy Fullilove, Professor of Urban Policy and Health, The New School

Coty Montag, Deputy Director of Litigation, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund


Session 1: Reviving the Downtown Far Rockaway Village by Tiffany-Ann Taylor

Rebecca Gafvert, Assistant Vice President, NYCEDC

Kevin Alexander, President & CEO, Rockaway Development and Revitalization Corp.

Renee Hastick-Motes, VP, External Affairs, St. John’s Episcopal Hospital

New York City Council Member Donovan Richards

Jonathan Gaska, District Manager, Queens Community Board 14

The recently approved Downtown Far Rockaway rezoning represents more than a zoning update – it is the result of years of the City’s work with a community ignored by past administrations. As the peninsula transformed from a seasonal destination to a place where low-income populations were concentrated, it became an area out of sight and mind from the rest of the city. It once was the peninsula’s commercial, institutional, and transportation hub known as the “Village”, today, it suffers from underperforming retail and underutilized and vacant properties. The Downtown Far Rockaway Roadmap for Action will bring new opportunities for retail, community facilities, affordable housing, and open space, along with $288 Million in City investment. Hear from those who led and participated in the process.

Session 2: Crime Prevention Through Community Design and Problem Solving by Tiffany-Ann Taylor

Erica Mateo, Project Director of Neighborhood Safety, Center for Court Innovation

Ifeoma Ebo, Senior Design Advisor, NYC Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice

Quilian Riano, Strategic Initiatives Specialist, Office of the Chief Architect, NYC Department of Design and Construction

Shin-Pei Tsay, Executive Director, Gehl Institute

Historically, zoning and building codes have contributed to the concentration of low-income people of color into public housing developments that are physically and financially segregated from the public life of their surrounding neighborhoods. Today many public housing developments account for 20% of the highest crime areas in New York City, as a result of the systematic ghettoization of the low income population. The consequential visual impact on the public realm in these communities is evident in the degradation of urban quality. This session will explore a new initiative – spearheaded by the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice to address crime in and around NYC public housing through an interagency and community engaged approach to addressing crime prevention through design and programming called Neighborhood Activation. 

Session 3: Racial Equity Planning to Practice: Local Responses by Tiffany-Ann Taylor

Andrea Batista Schlesinger, Partner, HR&A Advisors

Dr. Aletha Maybank, Deputy Commissioner/Founding Director of Center for Health Equity, Dept. of Health & Mental Hygiene

Asima Jansveld, Principal, HR&A Advisors

Roxanne Franklin, Director, New Orleans Equity Strategy

Erika Bernabei, Founder, Equity and Results

In recent years, city governments have begun to grapple with the exclusionary practices and approaches to planning and governance that have defined the history of this country and play a tangible part in city life today. Increasingly, cities have enacted equity plans and mandated implicit bias trainings in order to address racial disparities. However, institutionalizing a racial equity lens in governance must go the next step beyond rhetoric and high-level planning in order to generate better outcomes on the ground. The panelists will discuss their experiences and lessons learned from on the-ground work translating vision into policies for Boston, Seattle, and New York. The speakers will address attempts to institutionalize a racial equity lens within city government, and the challenges and lessons learned in moving beyond equity planning into material policies and outcomes. 

Session 4: Challenging Maps: Placed-Based Strategies in Orange, NJ by Tiffany-Ann Taylor

Aubrey Murdock, Head of School & Lead Designer, University of Orange

Rachel Bland, Director, Healthy Orange Coalition

Charlie Wirene, Managing Director, The HUUB

We say everything you want to learn about US cities, you can learn in Orange, NJ. In many ways Orange is like every US city, struggling with the discriminatory legacy of Serial Forced Displacement: policies like redlining, de-industrialization and gentrification. And like cities everywhere, Orange has it’s own history of People’s Power. It all started with a map. In 1957 a local mother discovered the school district map was gerrymandered to segregate Orange’s public schools. Luckily her husband was a legendary union organizer. As current practitioners in Orange, we have an amazing historical legacy to honor and uphold. Three practitioners: a builder, a public health professional, an artist and an organizer, describe this work from distinct perspectives. We welcome you to hear the story of our work and our city. In this session, participants will learn how to challenge maps and use similar place-based strategies in their own communities. 

Session 5: Detroit Reassembled: Inequality and Opportunity in Urban Planning by Tiffany-Ann Taylor

Nick Allen, Detroit Revitalization Fellow

Julia Elmer, Detroit Revitalization Fellow

Jason Reece, Assistant Professor, Ohio State University - Columbus

Alaina Jackson, Director of Housing, LifeBUILDERS

In this panel presentation, we will explore Detroit’s past, assess its current situation, and discuss our goals for the city’s future as they relate to development finance and housing. We will review Detroit’s discriminatory history of planning and examine its legacy in the localized context of recent neighborhood opportunity maps. With a view toward the unequal geography of opportunity in Detroit, we will examine municipal development finance and its role in building inclusive, just, and equitable communities. We also will examine homeownership as one part of a larger community development strategy toward social equity in the Regent Park neighborhood of Detroit. Our presentation will conclude with an overview of the relationship between public health and housing demolition in the city.