De Blasio Administration Announces Reseating of the Age-Friendly NYC Commission

NEW YORK (July 23, 2019) – The de Blasio Administration, in partnership with the New York City Council and the New York Academy of Medicine (NYAM), announces the appointment of 18 new Age-friendly NYC Commission members, complementing 28 reseated members. The Commission is comprised of leaders from government, nonprofit, business, education, and health care.

Age-friendly NYC Commission accomplishments since the last seating in 2015 include:

  • The release of “Age-friendly NYC: New Commitments for a City of All Ages,” an updated report on the City’s age-friendly initiatives;
  • The launch of www.imagenycmap.org, an open-source interactive map representing the current and projected aging population and corresponding resources and services, created by NYAM and the CUNY Mapping Service at the Center for Urban Research/CUNY Graduate Center and supported by the Fan Fox and Leslie R Samuels Foundation;
  • The publication of “Aging in Place Guide for Building Owners,” created by DFTA and AIA-Design for Aging Committee;
  • The contribution of a chapter to “Age-friendly Cities in International Comparison: Political Lessons, Scientific Avenues, and Democratic Issues;”
  • The launch of the Age-friendly Brooklyn initiative in collaboration with the Brooklyn Borough President’s Office; and more.

New Commission members bring experiences and resources to help address the challenges older New Yorkers face. The 18 new Age-friendly NYC Commission members include:

  • Saima Ajmal, Bellevue Healthcare Center Section Chief of Geriatrics
  • Susan Beane, Healthfirst Vice President and Medical Director
  • Victor Calise, New York City Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities Commissioner
  • Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez, New York City Department for the Aging (DFTA) Commissioner
  • Kevin F. Crain (co-chair), Bank of America Merrill Lynch Managing Director and Head of Enterprise Financial Solutions
  • Annamarie Gentile, Angiuli and Gentile, LLP Supervising Partner
  • Adele Gulfo, Roivant Sciences Chief of Commercial Development
  • Corey Johnson, New York City Council Speaker
  • Gregory Macias, SAGE Chief Operating Officer
  • Rebecca McGinnis, Metropolitan Museum of Art Senior Managing Educator, Accessibility
  • Allison Nickerson, LiveOn NY Executive Director
  • Laura Pugliese, Healthcare Innovation Lab Deputy Director
  • Jonathan F. P. Rose, Jonathan Rose Companies, LLC President and Founder
  • Judith A. Salerno, NYAM President
  • Aviva Sufian, Deloitte Consulting Specialist Leader
  • Julio A. Urbina, Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation’s Healthy Aging Program Vice President and Director
  • Sandi Vito, ll99 SEIU, Training and Employment Funds Executive Director
  • John Wallis Rowe, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health Julius B. Richmond Professor

“Having worked in the nonprofit, private and public sectors, I applaud the Administration’s commitment to assembling a Commission that allows us to expand the perimeter and reach of government,” said DFTA Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez. “As we work together to build a more Age-friendly NYC, I look forward to leveraging innovation, research and cross-industry communication to build on the prior accomplishments of the Commission.”

“We are committed to addressing the needs of our aging New Yorkers and improving their quality of life. I am honored to serve as a new member of the Age-friendly NYC Commission, and I look forward to working with my partners in government to advocate for our seniors. New York City is the greatest city in the world, and we must make sure residents of all ages are thriving,” said Speaker Corey Johnson.

“The new members joining the Age-friendly New York City Commission includes a coalition of advocates with a wide range of experience, knowledge and backgrounds in fields as diverse as labor, non-profits and government work,” said Council Member Margaret S. Chin, Chair of the New York City Council’s Committee on Aging. “I look forward to working with them and the Department for the Aging Commissioner Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez in building a New York City that refuses to tolerate age discrimination in any capacity and allows all New Yorkers to age with dignity.”

“Our older population is growing, and it’s more important than ever that we make New York a truly age-friendly city—which has been a priority of mine from day one,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “Seniors deserve a welcoming and accessible city as they age, and I thank Mayor de Blasio and his Administration for continuing this initiative to support our elders as they age gracefully in their communities.”

“The aging population is growing rapidly across our borough and our city. A recent study found that eight out of the top fifteen most popular zip codes for baby boomers are here in Brooklyn. In order to create a New York that is amenable to people of all ages, we have to ensure we are investing in access to public transit, housing, employment opportunities, social inclusion, open space, and so much more. My administration has been proud to partner with DFTA and the New York Academy of Medicine on senior initiatives such as Age-friendly Brooklyn, and we look forward to releasing the findings and recommendations of our comprehensive borough-wide survey on advancing age-friendliness,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams.

“Since 2007, The New York Academy of Medicine has been a proud and committed partner with the Mayor’s Office and the City Council on Age-friendly NYC, driving creative solutions to some of the most pressing concerns facing older New Yorkers,” said New York Academy of Medicine President, Judith A. Salerno, MD, MS. “We look forward to collaborating with the newly appointed Age-friendly NYC Commission to ensure that New York City is equitable and inclusive, and a place where people of all ages can thrive.”

“We are so pleased that the Mayor has reappointed the Age-friendly NYC Commission. Successes of earlier Commissions have demonstrated that what is good for NYC’s seniors is good for the city as a whole. With impacts on planning services, to changes in traffic patterns and bus shelters, to senior friendly business practices, NYC has distinguished itself and become a model which cities around the world emulate. We look forward to future success in addressing the needs of new population groups, and financial issues of aging,” said Audrey S. Weiner, Immediate Past President of The New Jewish Home and Co-chair of the Age-friendly NYC Commission.

“It is an honor to be part of the Commission. Being a resident of NYC, I’m personally driven to help people in my community living longer and more productive lives. At Bank of America, we have a deep understanding of the issues associated with aging and are committed to helping our clients, colleagues and communities. I am excited by the opportunity to work together,” said Kevin F. Crain, Managing Director and Head of Enterprise Financial Solutions at Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Co-chair of the Age-friendly NYC Commission.

“As the global business voice on aging, with our headquarters in New York City, the Global Coalition on Aging commends the New York Academy of Medicine, Mayor’s Office and City Council for seating its new Age-friendly Commission and are delighted that two of our GCOA member companies, Bank of America and Roivant, will serve on the Commission and represent global and local business perspectives,” said Michael W. Hodin, PhD, CEO of the Global Coalition on Aging (GCOA). “We at GCOA are proud of our longstanding partnership with Age-friendly New York, which has been instrumental in the healthy and active aging movement, serves as a model for all Age-friendly Cities, and under the new Commission’s leadership, will continue to be a beacon for age-friendly innovation everywhere.”

“New York City has led the age-friendly movement nationally, starting by launching Age-friendly NYC 12 years ago in partnership with the City Council and the New York Academy of Medicine. AARP applauds Mayor de Blasio for keeping the commission robust and remaining committed to its work to identify and implement improvements to the services, housing, transportation, public spaces and community and social opportunities that help make the city a great place to live for people of all ages,” said Beth Finkel, AARP New York State Director.

“LiveOn NY congratulates the Office of the Mayor, New York City Council and  New York Academy of Medicine on their steadfast commitment to the Age-friendly NYC Initiative which is ensuring that New York is the best place to age, both now and into the future,” said Allison Nickerson, Executive Director of LiveOn NY. “I look forward to serving as a member of the Age-friendly NYC Commission to build on existing strengths and develop policies to transform New York into a City that helps all people, in every neighborhood and community, regardless of income, thrive in their later years.”

Following the reseating, the Commission will frame an overall strategy update, reflecting on past achievements and evaluating emerging needs to renew and enhance the Commission’s objectives. The Commission will meet four times per year.

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The New York City Department for the Aging works to eliminate ageism and ensure the dignity and quality of life of New York City’s diverse 1.6 million older adults. DFTA also works to support caregivers through service, advocacy, and education. DFTA is the largest area agency on aging in the U.S.

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