The Parks Without Borders Discussion Series explores ideas for the next generation of parks and public space and considers opportunities to build greener parks, healthier communities, and more resilient neighborhoods. Events will be held through 2017.
NYC Parks is excited to host park leadership from Arlington, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, and New York City for our kickoff event of our Parks Without Borders Discussion Series. This discussion focuses on the value of a seamless public realm, showcasing examples of how innovative park planning is changing the face of cities for the better.
Speakers include Kathryn Ott Lovell, Commissioner of Philadelphia Parks & Recreation; Jayne Miller, Superintendent of Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board; Jane Rudolph, Director of Department of Parks and Recreation for Arlington Virginia, and Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP, Commissioner of NYC Parks. The panel was moderated by Lynn B. Kelly, Executive Director of New Yorkers for Parks.
Kathryn Ott Lovell was appointed Commissioner of the Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Department by Mayor Jim Kenney in January 2016. As Commissioner, Kathryn oversees 700 employees and over 10,100 acres of land, 500 buildings, 225 miles of trail, 250 playgrounds and thousands of programs and events throughout Philadelphia's Parks and Recreation system. In just a few months, Kathryn has led innovative initiatives to activate the City’s parks and engage residents and visitors throughout Philadelphia.
Jayne Miller has served as the Superintendent of the nationally renowned Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) under the direction of a nine member elected policy-making board since November 2010. The MPRB is a diverse system of land and water spanning 6,801 acres of parkland and water featuring 179 park with 22 lakes, 49 recreation centers, 112 playgrounds, 66 pools, 13 golf facilities, 12 gardens, 200+ miles of biking and walking paths, 397 multipurpose sports fields, 5 outdoor performance stages, nature sanctuaries and the 102 miles of Grand Rounds trails that together annually serve approximately 21.4 million visitors. The MPRB has also been recognized by the Trust for Public Land in 2013, 2014 and 2015, and 2016 as the #1 Park System in the United States.
Jane Rudolph has served as Director of Arlington County Department of Parks and Recreation since January 2013. Arlington County is 26 square miles located along the Potomac River directly across from Washington DC. Its estimated population is nearly 220,400, making it among the most densely populated jurisdictions in the country. As Director, Jane is responsible for a $40 million urban park system with a ten-year capital improvement plan that exceeds $205 million. Under her leadership in 2016, Arlington’s park system was ranked in the top five of the nation’s 100 largest cities by the Trust for Public Land.
Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP became the Commissioner of NYC Parks in May 2014. In this role, he oversees management, planning, and operations of nearly 30,000 acres of parkland. Prior to returning to his native New York City, he served as the Chief Planning and Development Officer and Planning Director for Raleigh, N.C. Commissioner Silver is also the immediate past president of the American Planning Association and was inducted into their College of Fellows in 2014. He is currently the Dunlop Lecturer in Housing and Urbanization at Harvard University. Silver received a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn and a Master’s Degree in Urban Planning from Hunter College in NYC.
Lynn B. Kelly joined NY4P in December, 2016. She previously served as the President and CEO of Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden, a position she held since 2010. Snug Harbor, a distinguished Smithsonian Affiliate, provides programming in horticulture, agriculture and the visual and performing arts, and attracts over 500,000 visitors annually. Lynn received a B.A. in Metropolitan Studies from New York University, and a Master of Public Administration from NYU's Wagner School of Public Service.