Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso Allocates $15.6m To NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County To Renovate NICU and Mother-Baby Units

BROOKLYN, NY (July 28, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso today announced his administration has allocated $15.625 million to NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County to help renovate the facility’s newborn intensive care unit (NICU) and Mother-Baby units. The upgrades will convert both units into family-friendly spaces, providing comfort and privacy for parents and newborns, and help to close disparities of maternal mortality rates found among people of color compared to their white counterparts.

NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County is the third hospital to receive funding through the Borough President’s FY23 capital budget, with the entire $45M budget being allotted across the three public hospitals in Brooklyn to help improve maternal health care services that will in turn reduce maternal mortality rates of Black pregnant people. Mr. Reynoso is the first Borough President to allocate an entire fiscal year’s capital funding to one cause, and within one city organization.

“When thinking through what could help save a life and make someone’s birthing experience more positive, we often think of the clinicians and equipment, even training. However, environment is critical to ensure a birthing person, their support system, and their care team have not just the necessary space but the proper surroundings to make someone feel at ease, and triage any life-threatening situation,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “As I’ve mentioned before, we’re thinking through all the ways pregnant people and their care teams can be empowered through the birthing experience to help save lives.”

“Brooklyn is the fastest growing borough in New York City and it has the second-highest birth rate. NYC Health + Hospitals applauds Borough President Antonio Reynoso for his vision to make Brooklyn one of the safest places to give birth,” said NYC Health + Hospitals President and CEO Mitchell Katz, MD. “While racial disparities in birth outcomes are evident nationwide, our health care system is committed to reducing and eliminating these inequalities by creating safer birth experiences for New Yorkers. The borough president’s investment in our patients and their families will help us further improve maternal health outcomes. We thank Mr. Reynoso for his tremendous partnership and generosity, and we are most grateful for his gift.”

“We are so grateful to Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso for his gift of more than $15 million dollars to NYC Health+ Hospitals/Kings County. Borough President Reynoso’s commitment to the women of Brooklyn is outstanding and aligns with the work NYC Health + Hospitals has been engaged in since 2018 to improve the health of women and families. The capital funding Borough President Reynoso has dedicated to NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County and the other Brooklyn facilities will change more than infrastructure — it will change the way in which our public health system delivers care to birthing patients. This gift will be transformational. NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County will provide patient-centered, family-centered holistic care. Thank you, Borough President Reynoso, for your foresight and vision to enhance the experience of birthing patients in Brooklyn,” said NYC Health + Hospitals Chief Women’s Health Officer Wendy Wilcox, MD, MPH, MBA, FACOG

“I am proud to announce the upcoming renovation of NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County’s NICU and Mother-Baby units,” said NYC Health + Hospitals Chief Executive Officer Sheldon P. Mcleod. “These advancements will work towards combating the health disparities in maternal health. We continue to ensure all mothers who walk through our doors receive the highest quality care in a spacious, welcoming environment.”

The $15.6 million capital allocation will help renovate and transform 22,500 square-feet of NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County that houses its NICU and Mother-Baby units. Patient rooms will become single-occupancy family rooms, allowing families comfort and privacy during their birthing experience. These new developments allow NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County to continue providing high-quality patient-centric care by offering the latest advancements to patients in an accommodating environment to encourage positive parent-infant relationships.

“We are reminded every day in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County of the critical importance of safe and comprehensive care for pregnant people in our community,” said NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County Chief of Gynecology & Obstetrics Natalie Ohly, MD. “We are grateful for the support from our Brooklyn Borough President to improve the environment and create an even safer and welcoming birthing experience for our patients and their families.”

During his campaign, Borough President Reynoso highlighted the gross inequity that Black pregnant people are 9.4 times more likely to die due to childbirth complications than their white counterparts. He pledged to reduce this disparity in Brooklyn, making the borough one of the safest places to have a baby in the country.

Borough President Reynoso began working on this priority quickly after transitioning to his new role, launching his administration’s Maternal Health Taskforce in April 2022. The taskforce will help lay the foundation for strategizing around his maternal health agenda and expanding the taskforce.

In addition to his capital allocations, Borough President Reynoso also looks forward to supporting outpatient services, such as social services and community care models, that address underlying issues faced by people of color, increasing health insurance access for all birthing people, and more.

“The communities Kings County serves have some of the worst maternal health outcomes in New York State. We wouldn’t accept these disparities in other parts of the city, and we can’t accept them here. I’m grateful to the Borough President for these desperately-needed resources, and will continue the fight in Albany for quality, affordable healthcare for women and children in Central Brooklyn,” said New York State Senator Zellnor Myrie.

“Maternal mortality and morbidity is a national issue that hits home in Brooklyn as our rates are the highest in New York City, shining a light on the racial inequity black and brown birthing people face due to lack of equitable medical care. Borough President Reynoso’s leadership on this critical issue is necessary to build our Health + Hospitals reputation as a birthing destination. By investing in birthing centers for Woodhull, Coney Island, and Kings County hospitals we are closing the gap to a historical disparity and creating equitable maternal health outcomes for safer birthing experiences,” said Councilmember Farah Louis.

“Too often, our mothers, our women, and their need for quality and comprehensive maternal health support does not get the attention that it deserves. With today’s announcement we are making it clear that Brooklyn will not leave our women, and particularly mothers of color, behind any longer. New York City can and must do better to protect maternal health, and this investment of $15.625 million dollars shows that Brooklyn and our Borough President are serious about addressing and eradicating severe maternal mortality and morbidity. I thank Borough President Reynoso for his bold leadership on this topic,” said Councilmember Rita Joseph.

Earlier this month, Borough President Reynoso announced a capital allocation of $11M to NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull to improve the hospital’s women’s health services by creating a state-of-the-art birthing center, and $18M to NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island to expand and centralize maternal health services on its campus.

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Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso Allocates $18.5m In Capital Funding To NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island To Expand Integrated Women’s Health Services On Its Campus

Borough President Reynoso’s funding will help improve women’s health care and reduce racial disparities in maternal health in South Brooklyn

BROOKLYN, NY (July 26, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso today announced his administration has allocated $18.5 million in capital funding to NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island to consolidate and expand access to women’s health services on the hospital’s campus. This funding will allow the South Brooklyn hospital to improve the continuity of care between inpatient and outpatient services, which will lead to better patient outcomes.

NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island is receiving the largest allocation from Borough President Reynoso’s FY23 capital funding at $18.5M, with the entire $45M budget being allotted across the three public hospitals in Brooklyn to help improve maternal health care services that will in turn reduce maternal mortality rates of Black pregnant people. Mr. Reynoso is the first Borough President to allocate an entire fiscal year’s capital funding to one cause, and within one city organization.

“It’s important for me to ensure that every corner of Brooklyn is given an equitable amount of attention and resources when trying to build a more sustainable, safer, livable future in this borough. Being able to invest a substantial amount of funds across our three Brooklyn public hospitals will help upgrade services throughout the borough, including in South Brooklyn where NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island stands,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “I thank our city’s public healthcare system for being a trusted partner in my efforts to close maternal mortality rates among Black pregnant people.”

“Brooklyn is the fastest growing borough in New York City and it has the second-highest birth rate. NYC Health + Hospitals applauds Borough President Antonio Reynoso for his vision to make Brooklyn one of the safest places to give birth,” said NYC Health + Hospitals President and CEO Mitchell Katz, MD. “While racial disparities in birth outcomes are evident nationwide, our health care system is committed to reducing and eliminating these inequalities by creating safer birth experiences for New Yorkers. The borough president’s investment in our patients and their families will help us further improve maternal health outcomes. We thank Mr. Reynoso for his tremendous partnership and generosity, and we are most grateful for his gift.”

“The Borough President’s generous infusion of capital funding will help complete a multi-year master plan for the future NYC Health + Hospitals/South Brooklyn Health and its Ruth Bader Ginsburg Hospital. Provision of equitable and state-of-the-art women’s health care services to the residents of South Brooklyn and neighboring communities is a cornerstone in the hospital’s clinical strategy,” said NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island CEO Svetlana Lipyanskaya. “It is inconceivable that Black women are eight times more likely to die from complications during birth in New York City. I wholeheartedly support the Borough President’s goal of addressing the maternal mortality disparity between women of color and their white counterparts and making Brooklyn the safest borough in NYC to give birth.”

Capital funding will go towards creating a contiguous comprehensive women’s health service on the eight floor of the Main and Tower buildings.  Services from outpatient care to labor and delivery to post-partum recovery will be brought together to ensure care continuity and safety.    Patient rooms and ancillary space will be upgraded to enhanced total family care. Additionally, the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) and nursery will be redesigned to accommodate the needs of families to reflect the hospital’s Baby-Friendly designation.

After the redesign of the hospital’s Mother-Baby Unit, all women’s health providers, staff and patient support spaces, and education facilities will be on the same floor, allowing for an immediate response in case of an emergency and promoting a dialogue between team members to ensure timely consultation when questions arise.  Furthermore, the co-location of services will allow expecting patients and their families to become familiar with the team and amenities, thus increasing comfort and decreasing anxiety.  

“On behalf of the entire OB/GYN Department, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Borough President Reynoso for his commitment to improving women’s health care for South Brooklyn residents, said Dr. Maggie Tetrokalashvili, Chair of OB/GYN at Coney Island Hospital. His support will enable us to make a positive impact in the lives of patients we serve, to give every mother, every baby and every woman a sense of belonging, and hope for a brighter future.”

“NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island’s investment in improving women’s health care services is an important milestone in meeting the health care needs of the residents of South Brooklyn and its neighboring communities. I applaud Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso’s commitment to improving the health and well-being of the patients who seek care at New York City’s public health system” said Theresa Scavo, Chair of NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island Community Advisory Board.

During his campaign, Borough President Reynoso highlighted the gross inequity that Black pregnant people are 9.4 times more likely to die due to childbirth complications than their white counterparts. He pledged to reduce this disparity in Brooklyn, making the borough one of the safest places to have a baby in the country.

Borough President Reynoso began working on this priority quickly after transitioning to his new role, launching his administration’s Maternal Health Taskforce in April 2022. The taskforce will help lay the foundation for strategizing around his maternal health agenda and expanding the taskforce.

In addition to his capital allocations, Borough President Reynoso also looks forward to supporting outpatient services, such as social services and community care models, that address underlying issues faced by people of color, increasing health insurance access for all birthing people, and more.

“It is once again my pleasure to stand with Borough President Antonio Reynoso as he leads the way in addressing the vast disparities in maternal health and mortality and helps to create more equitable maternal health care services in our borough. Borough President Reynoso’s $18.5 million allocation of capital funding to Coney Island Hospital will certainly help so many soon-to-be mothers of color receive the care they need and deserve. As a mother of four, a registered nurse, and Chair of the Council’s Committee on Hospitals, I commend and thank Borough President Reynoso for his bold leadership and commitment to this issue,” said Councilmember and Chair of the City Council Committee on Hospitals Mercedes Narcisse.

“This funding allocation by Borough President Reynoso to NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island will potentially improve the health and well-being of many thousands of women in southern Brooklyn for generations to come,” said Assemblymember Steven Cymbrowitz. “This is welcomed news as we continue working to address alarming disparities in women’s health care/maternal health and to ensure that all women have access to high-quality and accessible medical options.”

“As a longtime resident of Coney Island, I am thrilled and grateful for the Brooklyn Borough President’s generous allocation of $18.5 million in capital funding to expand women’s health services at Coney Island Hospital. This investment in our southern Brooklyn community will benefit so many women from all walks of life who depend on the hospital for maternal health care. The significance of this grant in improving the quality of care that women receive cannot be overstated,” said Assemblymember Mathylde Frontus.

“I am immensely grateful to Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso for allocating $18.5 million in capital funding to NYC Health + Hospitals/Coney Island. This crucial funding will help this major Southern Brooklyn hospital to expand access to women’s health services and to improve the quality of medical care for countless patients. Back in February of this year, during our meeting in Borough Hall, I advocated for additional capital funding to Coney Island Hospital maternity ward, given its huge importance for all Southern Brooklyn communities. Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso have exceeded our expectations and secured even bigger capital funding that it was anticipated. He recognized the need for these vital services for women and their families. This allocation will save many lives. I am proud to join Borough President Reynoso at this historic announcement,” said Councilmember Ari Kagan.

“Thanks, Brooklyn Borough President Reynoso, for this capital funding allocation, and for his commitment to the health of Brooklyn residents, and Coney Island Hospital CEO Svetlana Lipyanskaya for her hard work on this. I look forward to the opening of this Integrated Women’s Health Services on the campus,” said Councilmember Inna Vernikov.

Last week, Borough President Reynoso announced a capital allocation of $11M to NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull to improve the hospital’s women’s health services by creating a state-of-the-art birthing center.

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Outdoor Lunchtime Jazz Concerts Return This August To Brooklyn Borough Hall

Partnering with the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership and Jazz Foundation of America, Borough President Antonio Reynoso brings back popular free series

BROOKLYN, NY (July 21, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso today announced the return of the popular outdoor, free, lunchtime jazz concerts in Columbus Park in Downtown Brooklyn. Partnering with Downtown Brooklyn Partnership and Jazz Foundation of America, and supported by EmblemHealth, local jazz artists will perform every Tuesday in August between 12:00PM and 1:30PM. Performers will include Eric Wyatt (August 2nd), Steve Cromity (August 9th), Willie Martinez (August 16th), and Patsy Grant (August 23rd).

“We said that this would be the summer New York City comes alive again after the pandemic, and we’re seeing that right in front of our eyes with all the music and community events taking place across our beautiful Brooklyn, including our Borough Hall jazz concerts,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “It’s been a pleasure to work with Downtown Brooklyn Partnership and the Jazz Foundation of America to bring back this beloved series, featuring all homegrown, Brooklyn jazz artists. We hope you come spend your lunchtime with us Tuesdays in August.”

“We’re so excited to be partnering with the Brooklyn Borough President’s Office and the Jazz Foundation on this series of lunchtime Jazz concerts,” said President of Downtown Brooklyn Partnership Regina Myer. “Being able to highlight Brooklyn’s homegrown talent right here in Downtown Brooklyn is such a privilege, and I hope everyone comes out to enjoy the music and our great outdoors. To be back after two years of being unable to stage this series is a great sign that Brooklyn – and NYC – is back.”

“In the course of 30 years of helping greats of jazz and blues music nationwide, the Jazz Foundation of America has gotten to know Brooklyn through the endless stream of brilliant musicians who are a product of the borough,” said Executive Director of Jazz Foundation of America Joe Petrucelli. “We are so pleased to be partnering with Brooklyn Borough President Reynoso and Downtown Brooklyn Partnership on this lunchtime series, which will put some superlative local talent on stage right in the heart of Brooklyn. It’s an ideal way to create new, meaningful work opportunities for fantastic musicians, in a unique and celebratory setting.”

The lineup for the series is as follows:

Eric Wyatt

Tuesday, August 2 | 12PM – 1:30PM

Wyatt is a tenor, alto, and soprano saxophonist born in Brooklyn. Son of Charles Jolly Wyatt and godson of Sonny Rollins, Wyatt grew up around Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk, Dexter Gordon, Gary Bartz, Big Nick Nicholas, Gilley Coggins, Wilber Ware, and Dizzy Gillespie. He has toured internationally and has played with Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, Kenny Garrett, Jeff Tain Watts, Roy Hargrove, Bob Crenshaw, Al Foster, Rufus Reid, Warren Wolf, Wallace Roney, and Steve Jordan.

Steve Cromity

Tuesday, August 9 | 12PM – 1:30PM

Brooklynite Steve Cromity Steve is a talented singer with a bebop style who has worked many top NYC jazz establishments such as the Lenox Lounge, Birdland, and Smoke, and with great musicians including James Weidman, Eric Wyatt, and Craig Haynes. “A talented singer with impeccable diction and an ear for great songs.” – All About Jazz

 

Willie Martinez

Tuesday, August 16 | 12PM – 1:30PM

Willie Martinez is a world class drummer/percussionist and vocalist who has worked with artists like Chico O’Farrill, Benny Powell, Hilton Ruiz, Ray Santos, Steve Turre, and George Cables. He has played everywhere from CBGB to Carnegie Hall and held a long-running monthly show at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe with his band La Familia. He was recently named “New Yorker of the Week” by NY1 for his weekly outdoor concerts, which enlivened his Brooklyn neighborhood throughout the pandemic. His Latin Jazz Collective is comprised of some of the most accomplished leaders in the genre. Their music exhibits the timeless marriage of Afro Caribbean rhythms and the harmonic vocabulary and improvisational spirit of jazz.

Patsy Grant

Tuesday, August 23 | 12PM – 1:30PM

A soulful song interpreter admired among her musician peers, Patsy Grant has long been an inspiration to those in the know. Cherished in the Brooklyn jazz world for her many spirited performances at spots like Brownstone Jazz and 966, she always brings wonderful musicians and builds a strong rapport with each audience.

More details about the series can be found here.

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Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso Allocates $11m In Capital Funding To NYCHealth + Hospitals/Woodhull To Create A State-Of-The-Art Birthing Center

Allocation to Woodhull Hospital is a part of Reynoso’s commitment to contribute an entire fiscal year’s capital funding to one issue, the first in Borough President history

BROOKLYN, NY (July 19, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso today announced his administration has allocated $11 million in capital funding to NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull to improve the hospital’s women’s health services by creating a state-of-the-art birthing center. Fulfilling a primary campaign promise, Borough President Reynoso is allocating his entire FY23 capital funds – a total of $45M – across the three public hospitals in Brooklyn to help improve maternal health care services that will in turn reduce disparities in maternal mortality rates found between Black pregnant people and their white counterparts. Mr. Reynoso is the first Borough President to allocate an entire fiscal year’s capital funding to one cause, and within one city organization.

“Every expecting family deserves access to high-quality health care no matter the color of their skin or the language they speak,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “The root causes of racial disparities in maternal health are real, and we need all hands on deck to stamp out the inequities that have allowed children and mothers to die at the exact time when we should be welcoming a life. I’m grateful to Borough President Reynoso for this generous investment in our hospitals to save lives and ensure all new moms have access to world-class care.”

“Regardless of intention or passion, one person can’t enact long-lasting solutions without the support of a small army that’s just as passionate and has the expertise to see those impactful changes through. I found a true partner in my fight against maternal mortality inequities in our city’s public health system,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “I look forward to working with NYC Health + Hospitals leadership, specifically at Woodhull and Brooklyn’s two other public hospitals, to ensure my ambitious capital funding yields results in lives saved. I’m confident that within four years, the conversation around maternal mortality in Brooklyn will be vastly different thanks to this allocation and the tireless work being done by our public health system.”

“Brooklyn is the fastest growing borough in New York City and it has the second-highest birth rate. NYC Health + Hospitals applauds Borough President Antonio Reynoso for his vision to make Brooklyn one of the safest places to give birth,” said NYC Health + Hospitals President and CEO Mitchell Katz, MD. “While racial disparities in birth outcomes are evident nationwide, our health care system is committed to reducing and eliminating these inequalities by creating safer birth experiences for New Yorkers. The borough president’s investment in our patients and their families will help us further improve maternal health outcomes. We thank Mr. Reynoso for his tremendous partnership and generosity, and we are most grateful for his gift.”

“On behalf of Woodhull Hospital and the community, I extend our thanks and appreciation to Brooklyn Borough President Reynoso for the generous support of $11 million to fund the expansion and improvement of our birthing center. The renovation of our birthing center will allow us to enlarge and modernize the labor and delivery operating rooms to provide a safer and more fulfilling experience for the mother, child, and their families,” said NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull CEO Gregory Calliste.

Capital funding will go towards the new birthing center, renovating six private labor and birthing rooms, enhance the nurse’s station, post anesthesia care unit, and an upgrade of the triage and ante-partum rooms. The new design also includes a state-of-the-art OB stimulation lab and enlarged modernized operating rooms for cesarean births.

“We are thrilled and thankful to our Borough President for the opportunity to provide our community with an enhanced, attractive, family-centered space in which high-quality birthing services can be provided,” said NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull COO Dr. Lisa Scott-McKenzie.

“I am grateful to Brooklyn Borough President for this capital gift that will be used to transform the external environment of the labor and birthing suite, create a state-of-the-art birthing center, and enlarge and modernize the operating rooms at Woodhull.  More than this,

I am grateful that he has lent his voice to the cause of making Brooklyn the safest and most satisfying Borough to give birth.  He has spoken often of not only how he envisions the facilities looking, but the benefit of the shared decision-making model of integrative midwifery and physician care he hopes will continue to be utilized at Woodhull and in other spaces. We share his vision for the community at Woodhull and we know that this contribution will provide birthing people greater and more positive ownership of their health, their pregnancy, and the outcomes.” said NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull Director of Midwifery Helena Grant.

In addition to the Borough President’s capital allocation of $11M, Councilmembers Chi Ossé and Jennifer Gutiérrez, with the support of Speaker Adrienne Adams, allocated $1,776,00 and $500,000 respectively for additional upgrades to medical equipment at NYC Health + Hospitals/Woodhull.

During his campaign, Borough President Reynoso highlighted the gross inequity that Black pregnant people are 9.4 times more likely to die due to childbirth complications than their white counterparts. He pledged to reduce this disparity in Brooklyn, making the borough one of the safest places to have a baby in the country.

Borough President Reynoso began working on this priority quickly after transitioning to his new role, launching his administration’s Maternal Health Taskforce in April 2022. The taskforce will help lead the foundation for strategizing around his maternal health agenda and expanding the taskforce.

In addition to his capital allocations, Borough President Reynoso also looks forward to supporting outpatient services, such as social services and community care models, that address underlying issues faced by people of color, increasing health insurance access for all birthing people, and more.

It is unconscionable that maternal death rates differ so drastically by race. I commend Borough President Antonio Reynoso for taking such aggressive and necessary action to help end the shocking and deplorable racial and socio-economic disparities in maternal health. I look forward to working with the Borough President Reynoso to ensure that no matter their color or economic status each Brooklynite has access to, and receives equitable and high-quality maternal care, and are never pushed to the side,” said Councilmember and Chair of the City Council Committee on Hospitals Mercedes Narcisse.

“As we fight for equity across this city, investing in the spaces that keep black and brown women healthy and promote real preventative care has to be at the forefront. A state-of-the-art birthing center at Woodhull will make a profound difference in the lives of our community and will make huge strides in addressing maternal mortality. I recently gave birth at Woodhull, so I know firsthand how much their patients, midwives, nurses, and doctors will benefit from this important investment. They are so deserving of this allocation. I want to thank BP Reynoso for his commitment to funding our public hospitals and congratulate Woodhull for their advocacy in bringing this necessary resource to North Brooklyn,” said Councilmember Jennifer Gutiérrez.

Maternal mortality and morbidity is a national issue that hits home in Brooklyn as our rates are the highest in New York City, shining a light on the racial inequity black and brown birthing people face due to lack of equitable medical care. Borough President Reynoso’s leadership on this critical issue is necessary to build our Health + Hospitals reputation as a birthing destination. By investing in birthing centers for Woodhull, Coney Island, and Kings County hospitals we are closing the gap to a historical disparity and creating equitable maternal health outcomes for safer birthing experiences,” said Councilmember Farah Louis.

This extraordinary investment from Borough President Antonio Reynoso will get us one step closer to bringing down maternal mortality rates in Brooklyn. This is exactly the kind of ambitious, focused spending we need to keep Black mothers alive and tackle racism and inequity in Brooklyn,” said Councilmember Lincoln Restler.

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Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso Appoints Juan Camilo Osorio To City Planning Commission

Osorio brings a long career focused on the decentralization of power, institutions and planning process, and its impacts on social, economic, and environmental transformation to build equity and justice in urban communities

 

BROOKLYN, NY (June 30, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso today announced the appointment of Juan Camilo Osorio as the Brooklyn representative to the NYC City Planning Commission (CPC). In this appointment, Osorio will support the equitable development of the city – with an emphasis of the borough of Brooklyn. Osorio brings a wealth of academic experience and peer reviewed work in the planning profession, with his work being focused on the decentralization of power in the planning process, and its importance to further equity and justice in the many communities that make New York City the patchwork that it is.

“Appointing a highly qualified urban planner who understands how interrelated issues on the ground are and how politics and processes can either aid or hinder the growth and future of our borough and city was critical in making my decision for the City Planning Commission. Juan Camilo fulfilled every qualification I knew was necessary to accomplish this,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “Gone are the days where we could plan for urban communities in silos between housing, parks, local businesses, healthcare centers, and so forth. We must approach planning in a holistic and comprehensive way to meet the immense changes facing our city. I look forward to seeing Juan Camilo support my vision for Brooklyn at the city-level.”

“I am honored to be nominated to serve at the City Planning Commission. I look forward to bringing my perspective as an architect and urban planner with 16 years of professional planning experience in New York City to this appointment,” said Osorio. “Based on my work providing technical assistance to community-based planners, environmental justice research and advocacy, and climate change mitigation and adaptation planning, I look forward to helping guarantee critical and objective planning and decision-making. As an academic researcher, I know first-hand how important the CPC is in guaranteeing a rigorous evaluation of projects and proposals. This is as critical space for debate to hear public concerns, respond to community needs and priorities raised throughout the planning process, and build on this dialogue to guide decisions toward achieving the public good.”

The New York City Planning Commission is a 13-member commission composed of appointees from the Mayor, each of the five Borough Presidents, and the Public Advocate. Commissioners have a unique opportunity to shape the city through the various projects put before the Commission. From affordable housing to economic development, the City Planning Commission plays a key role in advancing policy to tackle some of the City’s toughest problems. As a member of the City Planning Commission, Osorio will collaborate with the other members of CPC and vote to advance projects, subject to review by the City Planning Commission, that further a more sustainable, equitable, and just future for all New Yorkers.

Osorio has served as Assistant Professor at Pratt Institute School of Architecture, Graduate Center for Planning and Environment in Brooklyn since 2010, where he leverages his professional and research experience in New York City to help decolonize academic activity and engage students in applied research and planning collaborations with grassroots leaders to nurture mutual learning and explore the ethical and technical complexity of urban planning work.

Prior to his current role at Pratt, Osorio has taught as a doctoral candidate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he continues to serve as a research affiliate to the MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative. He has also led and supported research at the NYC Environmental Justice Alliance, Municipal Art Society Planning Center, Massachusetts Fair Housing Center, and local universities in Bogotá, Colombia, where he’s originally from.

Originally trained as an architect at the National University of Colombia, Osorio’s work places emphasis on the tension between cities and the political economy of climate action and disaster recovery, where social and environmental inequality exacerbate each other. While he has been working in the U.S. for the last two decades, he still collaborates with different partners in Colombia to study community-led low-carbon development strategies (LCDS) to support local communities in monitoring and adapting to climate change, as a new source of income, wealth, and security.

Osorio is a Ph.D. candidate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology for Urban Studies and Planning, and holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in Regional Planning.

The Brooklyn Borough President has the power and authority to appoint nearly 1,000 members to various boards of community organizations, city agencies, and non-profit organizations that impact that future of Brooklyn and the city at-large. Borough President Reynoso is keen on ensuring appointees to these various boards are reflective of Brooklyn’s diversity, valuing and elevating underrepresented voices that are typically not at the table.

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“Juan Camilo Osorio is a stellar addition to the City Planning Commission at a time when our City needs to focus on providing affordable housing and reducing emissions from our built environment with an eye towards equity. His approach to community-based planning is just what our city needs to ensure resident participation, while uplifting low-income neighborhoods and communities of color. I look forward to working with Osorio and Brooklyn Borough President Reynoso on our City’s plans for equitable and sustainable development,” said New York City Comptroller Brad Lander.

“I’ve worked with Juan Camilo Osorio going back at least a decade when he was Policy Analyst at NYC Environmental Justice Alliance and he’s a great pick to serve on the City Planning Commission,” said Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez. “I know that he will work tirelessly to develop more equitable and just communities across Brooklyn.”

“Pratt Institute is delighted that Brooklyn Borough President Reynoso has nominated Assistant Professor Juan Camilo Osorio to the City Planning Commission,” said Pratt President Frances Bronet. “Professor Osorio’s career in advocacy, research, and teaching is at the nexus of environmental justice and public policy and how the two can meet to benefit communities. Decisions being made now about land use in New York City will determine our preparedness for the impacts of climate change and our commitments to keeping all New Yorkers safe and healthy into the future. Professor Osorio’s knowledge and practical experience to improve environmental conditions, as well as his work with grassroots organizations, will elevate the Commission’s awareness and attentiveness to climate change impacts on the city’s growth and development.”

“Brooklyn Borough President Reynoso’s nomination of Juan Camilo Osorio to the New York City Planning Commission is an inspired choice. Juan is a creative, intelligent, and talented planner who is committed to addressing the critical planning challenges of our time – climate change, housing affordability, and equitable and just community development. As we emerge from the pandemic and years of planning and development policies too often guided by greed and racial and economic animus, Juan will bring to the commission intelligence, knowledge of planning and development policies coupled with a commitment to people and community with the goal of a fostering a vibrant multiracial, multicultural city of opportunity,” said Ron Shiffman, FAICP, Hon. AIA, Professor Emeritus, Pratt Graduate Center for Planning and the Environment.

“Juan is the kind of leader we need right now,” said Marco A. Carrión, Executive Director of El Puente. “He brings not only his understanding of planning from an academic lens, but a holistic view of what is necessary to build a more equitable and just city. In order to create transformative change in our communities on a social, economic, and environmental level, new leadership under people like Juan as the Brooklyn representative to the NYC City Planning Commission are a welcomed change.”

“Juan Camilo Osorio has the highest level of expertise in urban planning, climate resilience, and disaster recovery. He is an innovative city planner and spirited New York community advocate. I have unwavering belief in Juan Camilo Osorio’s ability to perform the duties of an active member of the New York City Planning Commission,” said Dr. Cynthia Rosenzweig, Senior Research Scientist at NASA GISS, Adjunct Senior Research Scientist at Columbia University, and past Co-Chair of the New York City Panel on Climate Change.

“Juan Camilo Osorio is an inspired appointment by Borough President Reynoso. Professor Osorio is the epitome of a progressive planner: a seasoned, effective expert who understands that development must be in service of the people,” said Eddie Bautista, Executive Director of the New York City Environmental Justice Alliance. “Juan Camilo’s long, impressive track record of academic and public policy achievement, coupled with his unwavering commitment to environmental and social justice, makes him a standout and much-needed addition to the City Planning Commission. In this era of worsening climate change, Brooklynites – indeed, all New Yorkers – are lucky to have Juan Camilo Osorio’s talents, integrity and vision applied to the urgent development questions facing our great city. Pa’lante!”

Summer Wingate Concert Reinstated By Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso

SUMMER WINGATE CONCERT REINSTATED BY BROOKLYN BOROUGH PRESIDENT ANTONIO REYNOSO

Held on June 28th, concert will include music by soca singer Patrice Roberts, reggae singer Gyptian, and other musical guests

Concert is free of charge to the general public

BROOKLYN, NY (June 21, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso reinstates the summer Wingate Concert. Held at Wingate Park in Central Brooklyn, the concert will be held Tuesday, June 28th with performances by soca singer Patrice Roberts, reggae singer Gyptian, and other musical guests. The concert is free of charge to the general public.

“As the Chief-Promoter-of-Brooklyn, it’s an honor to bring back such a summer staple in Brooklyn, a community event I was asked about even before I took office,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “While we have daunting tasks ahead of us to strengthen our beautiful borough and make it more livable, equitable, and safer, we can’t lose sight of celebrating our culture and history. I’m looking forward to partying with my Brooklyn neighbors not just for this year’s Wingate Concert, but for many years to come.”

General entrances to the park will be limited to Brooklyn Avenue and Winthrop Street. ADA accommodations will be available for those who need it and should enter through Rutland Road. Doors to the park will open at 5:00 PM for the concert, which is scheduled to begin at 6:00 PM and end at 11:00PM.

The Office of the Brooklyn Borough President is also partnering with nearby hospitals, including NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County, SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University, The Brooklyn Hospital Center, and Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center, to provide on-site health screenings and assistance with appointments.

The Wingate Concert was made possible through fundraising efforts by the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President and Brooklyn for All, Inc., the Brooklyn Borough President’s city-affiliated non-profit organization. Generous sponsors include NationalGrid, Uber, Power 105.1, EmblemHealth, ConEdision, HealthFirst, Kings Plaza, Ponce Bank, and Waste Management.

The Wingate Concert Series was first organized under former Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz’s administration in the late 1970s when he was State Senator. Over the years, performers have included Big Daddy Kane, Wyclef Jean, and Aretha Franklin. The concerts were scaled back during the COVID-19 pandemic under former Brooklyn Borough President, now New York City Mayor, Eric Adams. Borough President Antonio Reynoso committed to bringing back the concert within six months of taking office.

Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso plans to organize various cultural, public events around Brooklyn during his tenue. Making it possible, the non-profit Brooklyn for All, Inc. aims to promote the cultural diversity of Brooklyn through services, events, and programming that support Brooklyn’s residents, businesses, community-based civil and cultural institutions, and the community at-large to enhance the lives of Brooklynites. BFA’s fundraising efforts will mirror Brooklyn Borough President Reynoso’s guiding principles of transparency, forging strategic partnerships with organizations and individuals that reflect the administration’s ethical standing, and a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion.

For more information on this year’s Wingate Concert or other events hosted by the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President this summer, please visit www.brooklyn-usa.org and follow us on social media at BKBPReynoso on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

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BROOKLYN BOROUGH PRESIDENT ANTONIO REYNOSO LAUNCHES CITY-AFFILIATED CHARITY BROOKLYN FOR ALL, INC.

BROOKLYN BOROUGH PRESIDENT ANTONIO REYNOSO LAUNCHES CITY-AFFILIATED CHARITY BROOKLYN FOR ALL, INC.

Brooklyn for All, Inc. aims to promote the cultural diversity of Brooklyn through services, events, and programming

 

BROOKLYN, NY (June 13, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso today announced the launch of Brooklyn for All, Inc. (BFA), the Brooklyn Borough President’s city-affiliated charitable corporation. BFA aims to promote the cultural diversity of Brooklyn through services, events, and programming that support Brooklyn’s residents, businesses, community-based civil and cultural institutions, and the community at-large to enhance the lives of Brooklynites. BFA will achieve this primarily through fundraising activities and organizational support.  BFA’s fundraising efforts will mirror Brooklyn Borough President Reynoso’s guiding principles of transparency, forging strategic partnerships with organizations and individuals that reflect the administration’s ethical standing, and a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion.

 

“I was elected as the President of the greatest borough in the world eager to enhance the borough’s future by tackling massive issues we’ve been faced with, including closing crisis-level maternal mortality rates, advocating for more affordable, high-quality housing, supporting the creation of more high-paying jobs, reducing the gun pandemic, making our borough greener, cleaner, and more sustainable, and so much more. But we mustn’t forget all of the incredible qualities of Brooklyn that begin and end with our diversity, culture, and energy,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “Through an equally diverse Board of Directors, BFA will serve as the engine that will ultimately promote unity and celebrate the rich diversity, history, culture, and future of the greatest borough in the world, Brooklyn.”

 

“It’s an honor to have been tapped by Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso as a co-founding director of Brooklyn for All, Inc. and as chair of its Board of Directors,” said Director and Board Chairperson Dr. Debbie Almontaser. “As an educator, non-profit leader, and authority on cross-understanding, I am exceptionally proud to work with other board members – together representing all corners of the borough – to amplify and uplift the vast diversity of Brooklynites. I look forward to working with the Board to preserve, create, and expand programming and events that will unveil the depth and breadth of communities to date unheard and unseen.”

 

“Antonio understands that true change comes from the community, from the ground up,” said Director, Board Vice-Chairperson and Secretary Jenna Bimbi.  “Knowing Antonio for nearly a decade, I have seen firsthand his dedication to progress. He has been a tireless champion for improved maternal health care, safe open streets, environmental equity, and a more prosperous future for our borough.  I am honored to work with him as a founding director to build a Brooklyn that lifts everyone, in every neighborhood.”

 

“I am really excited to be part of Brooklyn for All as a founding director and Treasurer, and feel privileged to be working alongside an outstanding group of fellow directors,” said Director and Board Treasurer Peter Restler.  “Borough President Reynoso’s vision for BFA is exactly what’s needed to support the energy and enthusiasm central to Brooklyn’s culture.”

 

BFA’s Board of Directors, appointed by Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso, is comprised of Brooklynites – natives and long-term residents – each with diverse backgrounds, relevant to promoting the inclusion of underrepresented groups and communities in Brooklyn. Board members’ demonstrated professional expertise, competence, or experience in the areas of corporate finance, non-profit fundraising, corporate governance, or management will support the intention and goals of the organization.

 

The Brooklyn for All, Inc. Board of Directors are:

 

  • Dr. Debbie Almontaser, Ed. D is an internationally recognized, award-winning educator, entrepreneur, speaker, authority on cross-cultural understanding, and author. She’s a 25-year veteran of the NYC public school system as a teacher, teacher trainer, administrator, and diversity advisor. Dr. Almontaser is the Director and Chairperson of Brooklyn for All, Inc.
  • Jenna Bimbi, currently the co-founder and Executive Director of the NY Birth Control Access Project, has a background in political consulting, having worked on impactful community-based campaigns across New York City and State. Having started her career at the grassroots level, Jenna recognizes the value of driving messaging one person at a time to create meaningful change. Bimbi serves as Vice-Chairperson and Secretary of Brooklyn for All, Inc.
  • Peter Restler has a financial career that spans five decades. The first 20 years were spent as an advisor to corporations and governments after which he co-founded a private investment firm. His expertise is in working with small and mid-sized businesses to support their growth. Peter retired as Chairman of the investment fund he founded in 2021. Restler serves as Director and Treasurer of Brooklyn for All, Inc.
  • Jon-Paul A. Bernard is a partner at a law firm focused on joint ventures and financial services mergers and acquisitions. He also has extensive corporate finance experience and has counseled non-profit service organizations on formation and compliance mattes.
  • Rasmia Kimani-Frye is the interim Executive Director of Hester Street, an urban planning, design, and development non-profit that works to ensure neighborhoods are shaped by the people who live in them.  She is a consultant focusing on urban problem solving, housing, movement building, governance design, non-profit management, narrative development, and strategic planning.
  • Deborah Lauter brings three decades of non-profit and government leadership in civil rights, inter-group relations, education, and advocacy for justice and fair treatment for all. As an attorney and former Executive Director of the NYC Office for the Prevention of Hate Crimes, Lauter created strategies and programs to support the communities most vulnerable to hate violence until her retirement in 2022.
  • Dr. Jocelynne Rainey, Ed.D. is a seasoned executive with over 20 years of corporate management experience and a leader in the non-profit sector in New York City. She is the current Executive Director of the Brooklyn Community Foundation and serves as member and trustee of various boards of NYC-based organizations.
  • Lisette Nieves has served in a variety of cross-sector leadership positions for over 25 years.  Currently the President of the Fund for the City of New York, she is an experienced social entrepreneur, public sector leader, and scholar. She has held senior leadership positions in the municipal and federal government.  She serves on the BFA board with the Vice-President of the Fund for the City of New York, Jill Borrero, serving as her alternative.
  • Shelley Worrell is a cultural entrepreneur born in New York and raised between Brooklyn and the Caribbean. Worrell also led the movement to name Brooklyn’s Little Caribbean, to support and celebrate hyperlocal Caribbean-American communities and culture.

 

 

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Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso Hosts ‘Little Free Library’ Building Session

BROOKLYN BOROUGH PRESIDENT ANTONIO REYNOSO HOSTS ‘LITTLE FREE LIBRARY’ BUILDING SESSION

 

Each of the 13 ‘Little Free Library’ kits built will be housed in Brooklyn South NYPD precincts, promoting literacy in those communities

BROOKLYN, NY (May 9, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso hosted a ‘Little Free Library’ building session at Brooklyn Borough Hall with support from NYPD officers and explorers, as well as H.E.A.L.T.H for Youths and community members. Based in Hudson, Wisconsin, the mission of the Little Free Library organization is to be a catalyst for building community, inspiring readers, and expanding book access for all through a global network of volunteer-led little free libraries. The 13Little Free Library kits built at Brooklyn Borough Hall will be housed in South Brooklyn precincts, promoting literacy in these communities. Precincts in Brooklyn North have received Little Free Library kits previously.

 

“A sure-fire way to get things done in any community and see results, is to join forces with multiple groups that have the same goal in mind. Our event was a perfect example of this,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “We thank all of our partners who helped organize this community event and bring new, creative ways to promote literacy in our Brooklyn communities.”

 

“Patrol Borough Brooklyn South is honored and proud to participate in this noble initiative, promoting literacy in our communities, with our partners at the Brooklyn Borough President’s Office, the Little Free Library organization, and H.E.A.L.T.H for Youths,” said Assistant Chief Michael Kemper, Commanding Officer of Patrol Borough Brooklyn South.

 

“It is an honor to be part of this initiative to build and place Little Free Libraries in the 13 Brooklyn South NYPD Precincts. We thank the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President for their generous donation, NYPD for their support of this program, and the Little Free Library organization for their continued promotion of reading, diversity, and literacy,” said Co-founder of H.E.A.L.T.H. for Youths Heather Butts.

 

The 13 ‘Little Free Library’ sets were purchased under the Adams administration during his time as Brooklyn Borough President. The building was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

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Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso Announces Administration’s Pre-K-12 Graduation Awards 2022

BROOKLYN BOROUGH PRESIDENT ANTONIO REYNOSO ANNOUNCES ADMINISTRATION’S PRE-K-12 GRADUATION AWARDS 2022

 

A ‘Merit,’ ‘Perseverance,’ and ‘Brooklyn for All’ award will help recognize students across Brooklyn and the many qualities that contribute to a community’s success

 

BROOKLYN, NY (May 5, 2022) Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso today announced his administration’s Pre-K-12 graduation awards for the 2022 season. School administrators in Pre-K-12 schools throughout Brooklyn will be able to recognize up to three unique students per graduating class this graduation season. A ‘Merit,’ ‘Perseverance,’ and ‘Brooklyn for All’ award will help recognize students across Brooklyn and the many qualities that contribute to a community’s success.

 

“Academic ability, grit, and a strong sense of community are qualities I believe every society should foster in their students to ensure they thrive and help structures around them grow stronger for the future,” said Brooklyn Borough President Antonio Reynoso. “I’m excited to help celebrate the potential, tenacity, determination, and generosity our children and young adults in Brooklyn have to offer.”

 

Recognitions include:

  • Merit Award is given to a student who has demonstrated outstanding academic achievements across subjects
  • Perseverance Award is given to a student who has overcome challenges to improve in their academics and/or achieve graduation
  • Brooklyn for All Award is given to a student who has demonstrated a generosity of spirit among their peers and/or within their Brooklyn community

 

Open to all Pre-K-12 schools in Brooklyn, school administrators will be able to submit names to the Office of the Brooklyn Borough President for graduation awards through an online form at www.brooklyn-usa.org/brooklyngrads/. Each graduation class in Brooklyn will be given the opportunity to submit no more than one name per award category, but all three are not mandatory to submit for.

 

Submissions for graduation awards will be open until Friday, May 20, 2022 at 2:00 PM ET. Awards will be mailed to schools during the week of June 13, 2022.

 

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