The board of directors of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy, a non-profit citizens’ organization that serves as advocate for Brooklyn Bridge Park and produces such popular Park events as Movies with a View, has announced the election of Nancy Bowe as its new chair, succeeding David Kramer, who has served as chair for the past three years. The announcement was made at the fundraising Soiree for the Conservancy, held at the River Café. Ms. Bowe is a past president of the Brooklyn Heights Association, past chair of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Community Council, and has served on the board of Grace Church School and various other civic and nonprofit organizations. She presently serves as secretary of the HOPE Program and on the board of the Citizens’ Union of the City of New York. Full text of the Conservancy’s press release after the jump.
BROOKLYN, March 3, 2011 – The Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy today announced Nancy Bowe has been elected chair of its board of directors. Ms. Bowe succeeds David Kramer who has chaired the Conservancy’s board since 2008. Ms. Bowe will lead the Conservancy in its ongoing efforts as the lead nonprofit citizens group working in support of the world-class park on the Brooklyn waterfront.
The announcement was made at the organization’s annual Soiree fundraising dinner at the River Café, which raised funds for the Conservancy’s free public programs.
“In her service on the Conservancy’s board, Nancy has proven herself an energetic and strategic advocate and thinker,” said David Kramer. “With a trifecta of vision, community focus and financial acumen, Nancy promises to be a dynamic leader of the Conservancy as we work in support of Brooklyn Bridge Park, the most important new park in Brooklyn in more than a century.”
Ms. Bowe, who has been a member of the Conservancy’s board since 2006, and vice chair since 2009, brings extensive experience with community and non-profit organizations and the financial services industry. A past president of the Brooklyn Heights Association, Ms. Bowe has served on boards for the Buck Hill Conservation Foundation, Grace Church School Brooklyn, and the City Church and is the past chair of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Community Council. Previously she served as Vice President and Director of Investor Relations at First National Bank of Chicago and Senior Vice President at Shearson Lehman Brothers.
In addition to her work at the Conservancy, Ms. Bowe is the secretary of the HOPE Program and serves on the board of Citizen’s Union of New York.
“I am honored to lead the Conservancy into an exciting phase as new sections of Brooklyn Bridge Park open to the public,” said Ms. Bowe. “I look forward to working in partnership with Brooklyn Bridge Park to engage the citizens of Brooklyn and beyond as we bring life to the park through public programming, volunteer and stewardship efforts, community outreach and private philanthropy.”
A native of Iowa, Ms. Bowe lives in Brooklyn Heights with her husband and three children.
“I’m thrilled to work with Nancy Bowe as newly elected chair of the Conservancy. Nancy brings a powerful combination of skills to the organization, including a long-standing record of community leadership and a deep and abiding love for the park,” said Regina Myer, President of Brooklyn Bridge Park. “And I’d also like to thank David Kramer for his energetic and effective stewardship of the Conservancy these past three years as we moved the park from the drawing boards to an open public amenity.”
“Nancy Bowe has been a strong and effective advocate for Brooklyn’s new ‘front yard’ now being built on the waterfront. As the new Chair of the Conservancy, she will certainly bring renewed enthusiasm for the park’s programming, stewardship and fundraising initiatives,” said Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe. “David Kramer has done a tremendous job leading the Conservancy over the past three years and I salute and thank him for his work in helping develop Brooklyn’s and the world’s premier 21st century park.”
“For years, Nancy has been dedicated to the community, including service as vice chair of the Conservancy, president of the Brooklyn Heights Association and chair of the Park Community Council. I look forward to working with Nancy, the Conservancy and the entire community to build a real, world-class park on the Brooklyn waterfront and continue our progress toward a unified Harbor Park – a Central Park for the center of the city,” said State Senator Daniel Squadron.
“I want to thank David for his leadership and vision in helping to make Brooklyn Bridge Park a reality. Although he is no longer the Chair of the Board, I am pleased he will continue his contributions as a member of the Conservancy,” said Assemblywoman Joan Millman. “Fortunately, Nancy Bowe is more than able to fill the very big shoes that David is leaving. I look forward to working with her. ”
“Congratulations to Brooklyn Heights’ own Nancy Bowe on her election as the new chair of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy, and a heartfelt thank you to former chair David Kramer for leaving such an enduring legacy,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. “When the New York City Waterfalls art installation came to the East River, David and the Conservancy built the Pop-Up Park at Pier 1 so that Brooklynites could have a free, front row seat. David’s development expertise also played a major role in Brooklyn Bridge Park becoming a long-awaited reality with the opening of Piers 1 and 6, with much more to come. Fortunately, he is staying on as a member of the board, and we look forward to working with Nancy as she and the Conservancy continue to transform this ‘urban emerald’ into our very own ‘Eden’ on the East River.”
“First, I would like to commend David Kramer for his selfless service to the Conservancy and the community. I am sure he will continue to be a strong advocate for Brooklyn Bridge Park,” said Councilmember Steve Levin. “I could not be more pleased to know that Nancy Bowe will become the next chair of the Conservancy’s board of directors. Nancy is capable, innovative, and always has the community’s interest at heart. I couldn’t be more confident in the board electing Nancy Bowe as its next chair.”
“Congratulations to Nancy Bowe! She brings a great depth of passion for the community, financial and organizational savvy, and I know she’ll do a great job,” said Councilmember Brad Lander. “Thanks to David Kramer for his extremely dedicated and energetic service, which has already brought great benefit to the park and the community. I look forward to working with the Conservancy in the coming years to insure a vibrant, active, growing park that serves as a treasure for all residents of our community, of Brooklyn, and beyond.”
Spurred by the Port Authority’s plan to sell the piers along the Brooklyn Heights waterfront for commercial development, the Brooklyn Bridge Park Coalition (now Conservancy) was born in 1988. Based in citizen activism around a desire to revitalize the Brooklyn waterfront and turn the piers area into a public park, an advocacy effort led by the Coalition encompassed more than 60 civic, community, and environmental groups, and resulted in a memorandum of understanding between the State and City committing a total of $150 million and the formation of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, a subsidiary of the Empire State Development Corporation, to design, construct, and operate the park.
Over the past ten years, the Conservancy has brought imaginative and popular programming to the future park site. Working in partnership with the Brooklyn Bridge Park Development Corporation, the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, and numerous community groups, the Conservancy has facilitated free public programming enjoyed by more than half a million visitors. The Conservancy has raised over $11 million, which has supported free public programming in the park as well as advocacy, park stewardship and maintenance.
Currently the Conservancy is working with Brooklyn Bridge Park to provide a wide range of free, public programming on Piers 1 and 6, which opened last year. Offerings include the annual outdoor film series “Movies with a View,” boating with local kayaking and rowing groups, a fitness series, playground enrichment activities, family festivals, and an extensive series of education courses focusing on the natural ecology and built environment of the park.
Mr. Kramer will remain on the Conservancy Board.
“David deserves our overwhelming thanks for his leadership of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy over the past three years,” said Nancy Webster, Executive Director of the Conservancy. “During this time we have seen Brooklyn Bridge Park progress from an idea to a reality. And under David’s tenure, the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy has grown in mission and scope, attracting over half a million visitors to free, public programming in the park.”
Mr. Kramer is a principal with the Hudson Companies, inc., developers of multi-family housing in the New York City area.