NYC Mayor-Elect's Transition Team: 60+ People, No Transpo Experts

Wednesday, November 20, 2013 - 04:00 PM

Mayor-Elect Bill de Blasio at the Talking Transition tent (Andrea Bernstein/WNYC)

Bill de Blasio has released the names of his full transition committee, and while education, health care, media and the arts are well-represented, there's one category that just...isn't.

As far as we can see, the only transition team member who has a transportation background is John Banks, a board member from New York's Metropolitan Transportation Authority. (And his day job is with Con Ed.)

A reader also helpfully pointed out that Maxine Griffith, listed below as being an EVP at Columbia University, is on the board of the Regional Plan Association.  

But the lack of a transportation expert per-se is a curious omission on the part of the Mayor-elect, especially since he received praise from transportation advocates this summer for his call to achieve "vision zero"  --  a future with no traffic fatalities.

"I'm disappointed," said Gene Russianoff, transit advocate and staff lawyer for the Straphangers Campaign. "I wish there was more representation from the transportation world."

Who is on the committee: lots of educators, religious leaders, labor and social justice activists, members of the Dinkins and Bloomberg administrations, developers, criminal justice experts, heads of foundations and nonprofits, and representatives from the finance and tech sectors.

We reached out to a de Blasio spokesman for comment; we'll update if we learn more.

The list of transition committee members can be found here or read below.

Jennifer Jones Austin, Co-Chair, Transition NYC (previously named)

Carl Weisbrod, Co-Chair, Transition NYC (previously named)

Thelma Golden, Director and Chief Curator, Studio Museum of Harlem

Dr. Marta Moreno Vega, President and Founder of Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute

Cheryl Cohen Effron, Founder, Greater NY; Former President, ATC Management

Karen Brooks Hopkins, President, Brooklyn Academy of Music

Alexa Avilés, Program Officer, Scherman Foundation; Co-President, Parent Teacher Association of Public School 172

Zakiyah Ansari, Advocacy Director, Alliance for Quality Education

Maxine Griffith, Executive Vice President and Special Advisor for Campus Planning, Office of Government and Community Affairs, Columbia University

Kate Sinding Esq., Senior Attorney, New York Urban Program, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)

Hon. Dr. Una S.T. Clarke, Former Councilmember, 40th District

MaryAnne Gilmartin, President and CEO, Forest City Ratner Companies

Bertha Lewis, President and Founder, The Black Institute

Marcia A. Smith, President, Firelight Media

Ana Oliveira, President and CEO, The New York Women’s Foundation

Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum, Senior Rabbi, Congregation Beit Simchat Torah (CBST)

Darren Walker, President, Ford Foundation

Martha Baker, Deputy Director, New York Paid Leave Coalition

Dr. Katherine LaGuardia, Assistant Clinical Professor, Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Science, Mount Sinai Medical Center

Dr. Conchita M. Mendoza, Chief of Geriatrics, University Hospital of Brooklyn, Long Island College Hospital

Cynthia Nixon, Actress, Artist, Activist,

Arnold L. Lehman, Director, Brooklyn Museum

Oskar Eustis, Artistic Director, The Public Theater

Edward (Ed) Lewis, Founder, Essence Communications, Inc.

Richard Buery, Jr., President and CEO, The Children’s Aid Society

William Floyd, Head of External Affairs, Google, Inc.

Meyer (Sandy) Frucher, Vice Chairman, The NASDAQ OMX Group

Orin Kramer, Founder, Boston Provident LP

Vincent (Vinny) Alvarez, President, NYC Central Labor Council

Peter Madonia, COO, The Rockefeller Foundation

Ken Sunshine, Founder, Sunshine Sachs

Harold Ickes, Former White House Deputy Chief of Staff

Dr. Rafael Lantigua, Professor of Clinical Medicine, New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center

John Banks, Vice President of Government Relations, Con Edison; Board Member, Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA)

Douglas Durst, Chairman, The Durst Organization

Derrick Cephas, Partner, Weil, Gotshal & Manges; Former CEO and President, Amalgamated Bank

Herb Sturz, Co-founder, Vera Institute of Justice

Jeremy Travis, President, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York

Rabbi Michael Miller, Executive Vice President and CEO, Jewish Community Relations Council

Pastor Michael Walrond, Jr., Director of Ministers Division, National Action Network (NAN); Seventh Senior Pastor, First Corinthian Baptist Church

Udai Tambar, Executive Director, South Asian Youth Action (SAYA!)

David Jones, President and CEO, Community Service Society of New York (CSS)

Marvin Hellman, President, OHEL Childrens Home and Family Services

Rev. A.R. Bernard, Founder, Senior Pastor, and CEO, Christian Cultural Center

George Gresham, President, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East

Dr. Steven Safyer, President and CEO, Montefiore Medical Center, Albert Einstein College of Medicine

Ken Lerer, Managing Director, Lerer Ventures; Former Chairman and Co-Founder, Huffington Post

Imam Khalid Latif, Executive Director and Chaplain, Islamic Center, New York University

Marian Fontana, Board Member, Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, Families Advisory Council

Tim Armstrong, Chairman and CEO, AOL, Inc.

Kevin Ryan, Founder and Chairman, Gilt

Pam Kwatra, President, Kripari Marketing; Executive Committee, Indian National Overseas Congress

Elsie Saint Louis, Executive Director, Haitian-Americans United for Progress, Inc.

Vanessa Leung, Deputy Director, Coalition for Asian American Children & Families

Paula Gavin, Executive Director, Fund for Public Advocacy

Kim Sweet, Executive Director, Advocates for Children of New York

Dr. Marcia Keizs, President, York College, The City University of New York

Jukay Hsu, Founder, Coalition for Queens

Arnie Segarra, Activist and Longtime NYC Public Servant

Elba Montalvo, Founder, President, and CEO, The Committee for Hispanic Children and Families, Inc.

Mindy Tarlow, Executive Director and CEO, Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO)

Hoong Yee Lee Krakauer, Executive Director, Queens Council on the Arts


Comments [7]

Peter Neillands from 076660

I have a simple internet portal that can save the city of New York millions of dollars being currently wasted now. Already a proven method by authorities..… of other state administrations. It' would be a shame not to take a look! It's a lock for the new Mayor and I can easily prove it.... Certainly (millions$$ savings)

Peter Neillands

Jan. 09 2014 07:18 PM
Eric F

You buried the lead! Cynthia Nixon is on his transition team??!! That would make her the first cast member of Sex and the City to have a role in a mayoralty. Thank goodness we now have yet another new, serious administration to instruct us that the time is over for "childish things".

Nov. 21 2013 05:34 PM
Eric F

The election of Deblasio is a cultural marker. He'll employ NPR-pleasing cultural policies, but I wouldn't expect much to change in infrastructure. Try to name a Dinkins' transportation initiative. His election wasn't about that. Nevertheless, I do expect a refreshed and aggressive emphasis on bike lanes because that's the sort of thing that excites his base in the media and among the influential urbanist set.

Nov. 21 2013 04:35 PM
Paul Anderson from New Rochelle, NY

Mayor-Elect De Blasio:

Contact me. I'd be happy to throw my hat in the ring as an experienced individual with real-world road, street and transportation related issues.

Nov. 21 2013 01:02 PM
steve from Brooklyn

You can't pledge to stop kids from getting killed (on sidewalks) and then dump that promise because it's inconvenient or because a few wealthy donors might lose their parking. That's an intolerable form of political cynicism. Immoral even.

This is on de Blasio to fix. New Yorkers are waiting.

Nov. 21 2013 11:11 AM
Peter Engel from Fort Greene

At an 88th Precinct community council meeting on Tues night, Public Advocate-elect Tish James said of transportation/public safety: "it's my job to be a pain in the butt to the big guy." Between a growing popular uprising and political pressure, let's keep BDB from being business as usual with transpo issues.

Nov. 21 2013 10:39 AM

Well, this is a pretty clear indication of how serious Mayor de Blasio is about his Vision Zero plan.

Nov. 21 2013 09:28 AM

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