Who We Are

Chair – Andrew Simons

Principal, Emphas!s Design

Vice Chair – Amy E. Turner

Senior Fellow, Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, Columbia Law School

Secretary – Kate Collignon

Partner, HR&A Advisors

Treasurer – Ted Weissberg

Executive Chairman, Digital Marketing Institute

Board Members

Scott Demel AIA, LEED AP BD+C, CPHD, Marvel

David Dobkin, Managing Director, Head of Acquisitions, Parkway Corporation

Deborah Flynn, Design Consultant

Paul Gertner, CEO, Starborn Industries

Gordon Hill, Climate Index Quantitative Researcher, Gro Intelligence

Richard B. Miller, Vice President, Regulatory, Consolidated Edison Company of New York

Sumner Pingree, Environmental Consultant

Robert Pirani, Director, NY-NJ Harbor & Estuary Program Hudson River Foundation

Eric Pitt, Climate Finance Consultant, Ceres Accelerator for Sustainable Capital Markets

Kati Solomon, Vice President of Operations, Bryant Park Corporation / 34th Street Partnership

Michelle Young, Founder, Untapped New York

Brooklyn Greenway Initiative Staff

Terri Carta, Executive Director

Terri Carta is a leader in public space stewardship and nonprofit management. As Executive Director of Brooklyn Greenway Initiative, Terri is responsible for driving forward the completion and long-term stewardship of the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway, realizing its full potential as a critical connector of people and neighborhoods, a component of New York City’s sustainability and resiliency plans, and a mechanism for community-based  visioning and stewardship. Terri’s career spans leadership positions in public engagement, community development, and leadership development, most recently developing the Central Park Conservancy Institute for Urban Parks where she served as its Associate Vice President. Terri previously coordinated community development, engagement, and education efforts for a watershed management project in Guinea, West Africa while serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer. Terri has an M.S. in Ecological Teaching & Learning and a B.S. in Conservation Biology. Terri is passionate about advancing a multidisciplinary approach to improving urban environments and the greater public realm.

Remy Schwartz, Director of Development & Administration

Remy Schwartz directs fundraising, partnerships, and administration for Brooklyn Greenway Initiative. He is working to build a diverse spectrum of support from businesses, government agencies, elected officials, nonprofit organizations, and private citizens. He is excited to complete the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway and expand greenways in NYC. Remy previously worked with The Battery Conservancy and The Prospect Park Alliance. He completed an Urban Parks Management Certificate from the Central Park Conservancy Institute of Urban Parks in 2020, he was a 2019 Environmental Leadership Program National Fellow, is an NYC Citizen Tree Pruner, and a proud graduate of Hampshire College. He likes to spend time outdoors as an avid cyclist, runner, stroller-pusher, and tennis player.

Anna Bakis, Naval Cemetery Landscape & Stewardship Manager

Anna works with the staff at the NCL to maintain the space, engage visitors, and foster a thriving habitat for native plants and animals. She also works on BGI's stewardship and greening projects along the greenway. Anna grew up in Brooklyn and spent many of her formative days exploring plants and insects in whatever patch of greenery she could find in her home borough. She has worked in a variety of New York City's green spaces throughout her career, from community gardens to NYC parks to botanical and school gardens. She is excited to bring her experience in horticulture, outdoor education, and public engagement to BGI.

Elizagrace Madrone, Development & Communications Manager

Elizagrace manages the fundraising operations and the overall communications for BGI working to tell the stories of the Brooklyn Greenway itself and of the communities the greenway connects. She has previously worked at a variety of New York non-profits (including Central Park Conservancy and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre) and continues to be an occasional instructor with Bike New York’s Gear Femmes program. In addition to being a bike commuter on all of New York’s greenways and a dedicated enjoyer of the city’s public spaces, Elizagrace is a theater artist and writer making small works across the country.

Leah Retherford, Naval Cemetery Landscape Gardener

Leah Retherford is a gardener at the Naval Cemetery Landscape and works closely with the NCL team to steward the space and welcome visitors. Prior to joining the BGI team, she worked as the Project Manager at the NYC Compost Project hosted by Big Reuse and before that as the Farm Manager at the Queens County Farm Museum. She began urban gardening in Detroit in 2002 where she cofounded Birdtown Community Garden with Bashir Ali Hakim, and realized putzing in the garden is what she's best at.

Greg Topscher, Naval Cemetery Landscape Gardener

Greg Topscher is a gardener working to engage visitors by developing and implementing programs, art installations, and maintenance practices, as well as fostering stewardship with the community along the Greenway. He is responsible for connecting visitors to the natural and man-made history of the NCL, as well as working to maintain the delicate ecosystem of a reclaimed meadow and help it thrive. Greg is an artist and owns and operates a cut-paper stationery company, Shipwreck Press.

Field Research Team

Jack Darcey, Field Research Coordinator
Wisely Chang Wu, Field Research Coordinator
Jacob Boersma, Field Research Assistant
Koryna Boudinot, Field Research Assistant
Daniel Flores, Field Research Assistant
Greg Suter, Field Research Assistant
Eric Thompson, Field Research Assistant
Jess Wachtler, Field Research Assistant


Brian Hedden, Communications and Advocacy

JVD Design – Jacqueline VanDusen, Graphic Design

Jitasa, Bookkeeping and Accounting

Tech4Results, Website and IT Support


Jon Orcutt, Advocacy

Sarah Kornbluth, NCL Advisory Committee

Jeffrey Longhenry, NCL Advisory Committee

Penn Marchael, NCL Advisory Committee

Andrew Ullman, NCL Advisory Committee