Public Services: Catching Up and
Redstone | 10:45AM - 11:45AM
As the fastest growing neighborhood, and having already grown beyond all original projections, what do
we need in terms of services and infrastructure to both serve our current population both of residents
and workers, and be ready to serve the new LIC-ers who are coming? In this panel we will explore how
the city and state look at planning – including for Schools, Transportation, Open Space, Infrastructure
- for such a diverse and fast growing area.
Gregg Bishop, Commissioner
As Commissioner of the NYC Department of Small Business
Services, Gregg Bishop is charged with running a dynamic
agency focused on equity of opportunity that leads to economic
self-sufficiency and mobility for NYC’s diverse communities.
Born in Grenada and raised in East Flatbush, Bishop began his
career at the agency in 2008, and was responsible for programs
designed to make it easier for businesses to start, operate, and
grow, and to recover from emergencies. He was promoted to
Deputy Commissioner of Business Development and Assistant
Commissioner of the Economic and Financial Opportunity at
SBS, where he oversaw parts of the M/WBE program. Prior to
his government career, Bishop served as the Senior Manager
of Workforce Development at NPower, and the Director of Web
Operations at Oxygen Media. He was the Vice President of
Technology Operations at TheStreet.com and began his career
at VIBE Magazine. Bishop received a Master’s in Integrated
Marketing and Management Communication from Florida State,
and a B.S. in Business Administration from Florida A&M.
Lorraine Grillo, President & CEO
NYC School Construction Authority
Lorraine Grillo began her career at the SCA 24 years
ago as a Community Relations Specialist. Over time, she
has served as Director of Government Relations, Senior
Director of Real Estate Services and Executive Director of
the SCA. In 2010, she was appointed President and CEO
by Mayor Bloomberg and reappointed in 2014 by Mayor
Under her leadership, the SCA successfully completed
over $22 billion of construction, producing over 75,000
new schools seats and completing thousands of capital
improvement projects. She led the effort to find innovative
ways to address school overcrowding by developing public/
private partnerships with major developers. During her
tenure, SCA met the challenge of replacing PCB containing
lighting fixtures in 760 schools, quickly repaired 71 schools
damaged by Hurricane Sandy, created over 8800 UPK
seats in record time. All the while maintaining an award
winning MWLBE program considered the finest program in
Gary Kesner (Moderator)
Gary Kesner is Executive Vice President of Silvercup
Studios, one of New York’s largest, full-service film,
television and commercial production facilities. Silvercup’s
affiliate, Silvertrucks, provides location lighting services in
the metropolitan area. Mr. Kesner supervises operations,
administrative, legal and financial affairs for the companies.
Silvercup is currently home to such television series as Girls,
Elementary, Younger and Madam Secretary and served as
the production venue for such classic productions as 30
Rock, The Sopranos and Sex & The City.
Andy Byford, President
MTA New York City Transit
Andy Byford was appointed President of New York City Transit
(NYCT) in January 2018. Prior to joining NYCT, Mr. Byford was
Chief Executive Officer of the Toronto Transit Commission,
where he led the third largest transit agency in North America,
Canada’s largest transit agency, carrying over 540 million
riders per year. From 2009 to 2011, as Chief Operating Officer
of Rail Corporation, Sydney, Mr. Byford delivered service to a
million customers a day on Australia’s largest transit network.
From 2003 to 2009, he held the position of Operations and
Safety Director with Southern Railway and South Eastern Trains
At London Underground from 1989 to 2003, his roles included
Group Station Manager, Kings Cross and General Manager
– Customer Service for three of the busiest subway lines. Mr.
Byford holds a degree in French and German from the University
of Leicester. He is from Plymouth in the UK, and is a member of
the Institution of Railway Operators.
Jimmy Van Bramer
New York City Council Member
A lifelong resident of Queens, Jimmy Van Bramer was
first elected to the New York City Council on November
3, 2009. First reelected in 2013, he was overwhelmingly
elected to a third 4-year term on November 7, 2017.
Now serving as Deputy Leader of the City Council, Council
Member Van Bramer was reappointed by Speaker Corey
Johnson to the Budget Negotiating Team (BNT) which
plays an integral role in formulating the City’s budget to
fund critical programs, projects and organizations citywide.
Council Member Van Bramer was also reappointed to chair
the Council’s Cultural Affairs, Libraries and International
Intergroup Relations Committee. As committee Chair, he
has oversight over 200 libraries and thousands of cultural
organizations, institutions and programs throughout
New York City. Council Member Van Bramer has led this
committee his entire tenure in City Council.
He has fought for significant capital projects in his district,
including the Hunters Point Library, Queensbridge Seawall
and park house, and the expanded Hunters Point South
Park. He has collaborated with DDC and DOT on street
redesign projects for Long Island City and has called
for more City say in the MTA decision making process.
Council Member Van Bramer represents Sunnyside,
Woodside, Long Island City and parts of Astoria.
NYC Department of Small Business Services