Event Program

  • 9:00 AM – 9:15 AM

    Introduction and Welcome
    Welcoming remarks will be offered by Rockefeller Institute Fellow Lisa Parshall.
  • 9:15 AM – 10:10 AM

    Panel 1 | Promoting Access and Equity in Housing

    Moderator: Laura Schultz, executive director of research, Rockefeller Institute of Government

    Procedural Justice in Housing Court: New York City’s Universal Access to Legal Services

    • Edith Kealey, executive research director, Office of Evaluation and Research, NYC Department of Social Services

    Connecting Communities Through Data

    • Mark Castiglione, executive director, Capital District Regional Planning Commission

    • Madison Hrysko, GIS and data analyst, Capital District Regional Planning Commission

    ERAP and Its Impact on Housing Instability in New York State

    • Nic Rangel, executive director, Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York

  • 10:15 AM – 11:10 AM

    Panel 2 | Tools for Engaging Diverse Perspectives in Community Decision-Making

    Moderator: Leigh Wedenoja, senior policy analyst, Rockefeller Institute of Government

    “Howdy Neighbor”: Quantifying Community Well-being with Public Opinion Surveys

    • Travis Brodbeck, associate director of data management, Siena College Research Institute

    Pedaling Forward or Pedaling Back? A Study on the Use of ICTs in Online Discussions on Urban Cycling

    • Marco Castillo, associate professor of political science, CUNY New York City College of Technology

    From Starting to Sustaining: What Actions Are Local Governments in North Carolina Taking to Advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)?

    • Carl Stenberg, James E. Holshouser Jr. distinguished professor of public administration and government, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

  • 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM

    Panel 3 | Community Engagement in Practice: Addressing Justice

    Moderator: Lisa Parshall, professor of political science, Daemen College & fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

    Talk the Talk and Walk the Walk: What New Yorkers Think and Say about Substance-Use Disorder

    • Katie Zuber, fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

    • Patricia Strach, fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

    Civilian Oversight of Police in Albany, NY: Recent Changes in 2021-2022 and Challenges Ahead

    • Nairobi Vives, chair, Albany Community Police Review Board

    • Veneilya Harden, vice chair, Albany Community Police Review Board

    Putting the Public in Public Safety: Evaluating Oregon’s Local Public Safety Coordinating Councils

    • Amanda Bankston, public administration PhD candidate, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

    • Adam Cucchiara, public administration PhD candidate, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

  • 12:15 PM – 12:45 PM

    Lunch
    Lunch.
  • 12:45 PM – 1:15 PM

    Keynote Presentation: Leveraging Local Resources for an Effective Sanctuary Response

    Leveraging Local Resources for an Effective Sanctuary Response

    • Kathy Sheehan, mayor, City of Albany

    • Kaitlynn Chopra, pro bono scholar, Immigration Law Clinic, Justice Center, Albany Law School

  • 1:15 PM – 2:10 PM

    Panel 4 | Institutionalizing Equity: Innovation in ARPA spending

    Moderator: Jasmin Higo, research assistant, Cornell University

    Challenges and Opportunities of Local Broadband Expansion Projects in the US

    • Ada “Duxixi” Shen, master of regional planning student, Cornell University

    • Jane Bowman Brady, executive director, GO ITHACA

    ARPA Housing Funds: Case Studies of Innovative Use

    • Jordan Perras, vice president of ESG strategy, Evergreen Residential

    • Julia Selby, master of public administration student, Cornell University

    LIHWAP: Examining an Experiment in National Water Affordability Assistance

    • Thomas McKiernan, master of regional planning student, Cornell University

    • Dante del Vecchio, student, Department of City and Regional Planning, Cornell University

  • 2:15 PM – 3:10 PM

    Panel 5 | Emerging Fiscal Opportunities and Threats for Local Governments

    Moderator: Lisa Parshall, professor of political science, Daemen College & fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

    Cybersecurity Insurance Challenges for Public Entities

    • Mark LaVigne, deputy director, NYS Association of Counties

    Local Government Data in Open Book New York

    • Sarah Lauser, graduate research assistant, Rockefeller Institute of Government

    Fiscal Resilience and Economic Recovery in New York Municipalities: An Examination of Local Government Finances After the Pandemic

    • Rahul Pathak, Richard P. Nathan public policy fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

  • 3:15 PM – 4:15 PM

    Panel 6 | Promoting Economic Security on the Local Level

    Moderator: Laura Rabinow, deputy director of research, Rockefeller Institute of Government

    Fair Fares: Exploring Participation Barriers and Identifying Opportunities for Growth

    • Kinsey Dinan, deputy commissioner, Office of Research and Policy Innovation, NYC Department of Social Services

    Addressing Food Security, Access, and Redistribution Efforts in New York: Stakeholders, Capacity, and Collaboration

    • April Roggio, research associate, Center for Policy Research, Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany

    • Mariana Torres, environmental health sciences PhD candidate, University at Albany

    The Role of Trauma-Informed Approaches in Fighting Economic Insecurity

    • Joseph Jones, director of policy, advocacy, and research, Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies

Presenters

Amanda Bankston

Amanda Bankston

PhD Candidate, Public Administration, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

Amanda Bankston is a PhD student in public administration at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. Stemming from professional experience spanning newsrooms, nonprofits, and communities across the country, her research interests center on how people work together to create more robust, healthier, and more equitable communities. Bankston’s work explores collective leadership, examining the process dynamics, competencies, and decision-making that drive effective collaboration for social change. As a facilitator, consultant, and administrator, Bankston has served more than 100 community-based organizations working to advance social and racial justice in diverse communities nationwide.

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Jane Bowman Brady

Jane Bowman Brady

Executive Director, GO ITHACA

Jane Bowman Brady is the executive director of GO ITHACA, a non-profit organization that supports sustainable and affordable transportation in Ithaca, New York. She is a second-year master of public administration student at Cornell University, concentrating in environmental policy and minoring in urban studies. Before coming to Ithaca, Bowman Brady served as a policy analyst at the New Zealand Ministry for the Environment in air quality and urban planning policy. She holds a bachelor of commerce in management and public policy from the Victoria University of Wellington. Bowman Brady’s research and policy interests are building sustainable, equitable cities and learning from and applying historical planning concepts like the Garden City Movement.

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Travis Brodbeck

Travis Brodbeck

Associate Director of Data Management, Siena College Research Institute

Travis Brodbeck serves as the associate director for data management of the Siena College Research Institute (SCRI). Brodbeck’s tenure with SCRI began in 2017, where he worked as a data analysis intern and evolved into a full-time position as the pre-election poll coordinator following the completion of his master’s in accountancy and earning of a graduate certificate in data and analytics. As the associate director of data management, Brodbeck programs phone and web surveys, executes sampling strategy, manages sampling quotas, cleans data, weights data, performs calculations, and presents information through cross-tabulations and visualizations. In addition to his primary responsibilities of data collection, analysis, and presentation, Brodbeck also serves as a faculty member at Siena College, teaching accounting courses and community-based research courses.

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Mark Castiglione

Mark Castiglione

Executive Director, Capital District Regional Planning Commission

Mark is the Capital District Regional Planning Commission’s fifth executive director, having joined the Commission in 2016. Mark has worked with both public sector and nonprofit organizations to advance regional planning, economic development, and environmental protection goals. His collaborative approach, focus on leveraging assets, and finding common ground underpins his work at CDRPC. Mark is a certified planner by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) and currently serves as the treasurer of the American Planning Association (APA) – New York Upstate State Chapter. He holds a BA in US History and a master’s degree in regional planning from the University at Albany. Mark is a native of New York State, originally from the Kingston area. He, his wife Elizabeth, and their family reside in the city of Albany.

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Marco Castillo

Marco Castillo

Associate Professor of Political Science, New York City College of Technology (CUNY)

Marco Castillo is an associate professor of political science at the New York City College of Technology of the City University of New York. His research focuses on public participation in government, social equity in public services, international public administration, and the intersection of technology and public administration. He has extensive experience in college governance, having served in numerous positions, including chair of the NYCCT College Council. Prior to entering academia, he served as a legislative policy analyst for the New York City Council, aiding in the administration of the Consumer Affairs Committee and the Committee on State and Federal Legislation.

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Kaitlynn Chopra

Kaitlynn Chopra

Pro Bono Scholar, Immigration Law Clinic, Justice Center, Albany Law School

Kaitlynn Chopra is a pro bono scholar with the Immigration Law Clinic at the Justice Center at Albany Law School. Prior to her current role, she served as a student intern for two semesters in the Immigration Law Clinic as a JD candidate at Albany Law School. Chopra previously interned with the Council of Europe, where she briefed issues relating to European migration policies, and with the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants providing direct assistance to immigrants.

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Adam Cucchiara

Adam Cucchiara

PhD Candidate, Public Administration, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

Adam Cucchiara is a PhD student in public administration at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University. His research interests include veterans’ affairs, law enforcement and policing, and public sector leadership. Before joining Maxwell, Cucchiara served as an infantry officer in the United States Army, with his assignments to command and staff roles in the XVIII Airborne Corps and US Army Europe, as well as tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. After completing his studies, Cucchiara will join the Department of Social Sciences faculty at the United States Military Academy at West Point.

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Dante del Vecchio

Dante del Vecchio

Undergraduate Student, Department of City and Regional Planning, Cornell University

Dante del Vecchio, originally from Houston, Texas, is a senior undergraduate at Cornell University, pursuing urban and regional studies. During his studies, del Vecchio focused on housing policy, urban design, and infrastructure. He participated as a designer for Upstate community partners as a part of the Design Connect project team for two years. He has worked as a lead in ADA redesign, permitting and grant writing, and community outreach. Most recently, he has worked as a research intern at Mainsail, a standalone battery startup, and previously at Advanced Power, a wind power outfit based in Amarillo, Texas. In these positions, del Vecchio has worked on analyzing site plans and micro-grid configurations and implementing drone technologies for remote analysis. After graduation, del Vecchio is looking towards law school and working in the growing renewables sector.

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Kinsey Dinan

Kinsey Dinan

Deputy Commissioner, Office of Research and Policy Innovation, NYC Department of Social Services/Human Resources Administration/Department of Homeless Services

Kinsey Dinan is deputy commissioner of the Office of Research and Policy Innovation (ORPI) in the NYC Department of Social Services/Human Resources Administration/Department of Homeless Services (DSS/HRA/DHS). As the agency’s research authority, ORPI conducts internal studies and evaluations and provides strategic direction and support for grant-funded projects, public-private research partnerships, and innovative pilot programming. Through these efforts, ORPI generates policy-relevant information and insights for DSS executive staff and leadership across HRA and DHS program areas, informing agency decision-making and contributing to high-priority agency initiatives. Prior to joining city government, Kinsey led the Family Economic Security team at the National Center for Children in Poverty, partnering with state policymakers and administrators to improve support for low-income working families. Kinsey holds a master’s degree in international relations from Yale University and a BA in government and foreign affairs from the University of Virginia.

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Veneilya Harden

Veneilya Harden

Vice Chair, Albany Community Police Review Board

Veneilya Harden received her doctorate of education and executive leadership in August 2020 from St. John Fisher University and her master’s in counseling and community psychology with a Forensic Mental Health Certificate from The Sage Colleges in 2015. Through former Governor Cuomo’s Excelsior Fellowship Initiative, Harden was appointed to the New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH), where she has maintained her employment for the past seven years. She served as the civil reintegration liaison for six of the seven psychiatric facilities overseen by OMH. Harden works in the Bureau of Housing’s Homeless Support Unit and as the statewide domestic violence liaison for OMH. Harden serves actively in the Capital Region community on the Albany Community Police Review Board as vice chair and police liaison, as a peer reviewer for multiple American Counseling Association journals, and as project associate with the Mclean Group, focusing on education, leadership, equity, inclusion, and belonging. Harden’s work is centered around advocacy, changing the historical narrative, and creating space, equity, education, and eliminating policing disparities.

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Jasmin Higo

Jasmin Higo

Research Assistant, Cornell University

Jasmin Higo is a German master of public administration student at Cornell University, where she specializes in economic and financial policy. She has worked at the World Bank in food security and digital agriculture. Higo co-authored a study on agri-food innovations for the UN agency, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). As a research assistant at Harvard University’s Growth Lab, Higo examined growth opportunities and constraints of African countries. As a consultant for an elected New York State Assemblymember, she used geospatial and census data to conduct research on racial health disparities. As a research assistant at Cornell University, she works on two USAID-funded food security and resilience monitoring studies in Ethiopia and Malawi. Prior to Cornell, Higo worked for a Boston-based NGO and technology company, Siemens, in sustainability, finance, and mergers and acquisitions. Higo earned a BA in business administration. Higo speaks Arabic, German, English, and French. Her research interests lie in regional economic development.

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Madison Hrysko

Madison Hrysko

GIS and Data Analyst, Capital District Regional Planning Commission

Madison Hrysko is the GIS and data analyst for the Capital District Regional Planning Commission, where she creates data visualizations and GIS maps for a variety of different projects. Most recently, she has been converting a natural resource inventory to an online platform to improve usability, identify locations in the Capital District that do not have broadband access, and create a public health scorecard as part of the nation’s Communities of Excellence Program. Hrysko completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Delaware and has two master’s degrees from the University at Albany in GIS and biodiversity, conservation, and policy. Previously, she worked at the New York State Department of Health as a public health specialist in the Harmful Algal Bloom Program.

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Joseph Jones

Joseph Jones

Director of Policy, Advocacy, and Research, Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies

Joseph “Joe” Jones has spent most of his career in public service in government and nonprofits working on policy, procedure, and program development in social services, economic development, and housing. Jones serves as the director of policy, advocacy, and research at the Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies (FPWA). Jones oversees the organization’s research and policy agenda, promotes poverty alleviation, and reduces systemic barriers to economic deprivation. Prior to FPWA, Jones held several roles at the NYC Department of Social Services, where his projects included: designing a first-of-its-kind citywide community outreach effort for the agency; creating and managing the most-extensive local COVID-responsive emergency feeding program; designing the operational plan for the country’s largest municipal cemetery; and implementing the nation’s first “right-to-counsel” program in New York City Housing Court. Jones started his career in housing policy and has worked and lived in most regions of the country. Jones holds graduate degrees in law and urban policy from the University of Michigan.

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Edith Kealey

Edith Kealey

Executive Research Director, Office of Evaluation and Research, NYC Department of Social Services

Edith Kealey, PhD, is the executive research director at the New York City Department of Social Services’ Office of Evaluation and Research. She oversees a seven-person team responsible for program evaluation and policy research across the Human Resources Administration, the country’s largest social services agency, and the Department of Homeless Services. The Office uses rigorous quantitative and qualitative methods to examine implementation experiences and outcomes, measure the impact of pilot programs and other policy changes, and synthesize research regarding best practices in human services delivery. Prior to joining city government, Kealey spent over 10 years as a research scientist with the New York State Office of Mental Health. Kealey managed several state-wide implementations and quality improvement initiatives focused on evidence-based practices and shared decision-making. Kealey received her BA from Brown University and her MSW and PhD degrees from the Fordham University Graduate School of Social Service.

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Sarah Lauser

Sarah Lauser

Graduate Research Assistant, Rockefeller Institute of Government

Sarah Lauser is an information science PhD student at the University at Albany specializing in government communication. Before beginning her doctoral studies in 2022,  she was manager of the data warehouse and data analytics units at the New York State Office of the State Comptroller (OSC). At OSC, Lauser spent over 14 years providing managers with timely data needed to make operational decisions, ensuring auditors had accurate data to stop fraud, waste, and abuse in government spending, and keeping the public informed through transparency efforts like Open Book New York.

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Mark LaVigne

Mark LaVigne

Deputy Director, NYS Association of Counties

Mark F. LaVigne is the New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC) deputy director. He works with the association’s board and staff to support NYSAC’s mission to represent, advocate for, and serve New York’s county officials. Previously, LaVigne worked at the Center for Technology of Government, the New York State Assembly, and was a congressional aid and newspaper reporter early in his career. He has a PhD in communication from the University at Albany and holds a bachelor’s degree in English from LeMoyne College.

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Thomas McKiernan

Thomas McKiernan

Master of Regional Planning Student, Cornell University

Thomas “T.J.” McKiernan is a master of regional planning student at Cornell University. He graduated from Binghamton University with a bachelor’s degree in geography. Before beginning his degree program at Cornell, McKiernan worked as a GIS analyst for an investor-owned water utility company. His research interests include water equity & affordability and the impact of policies on small, local water service providers. McKiernan is writing his master’s thesis on the uptick in legislation promoting “fair market value” appraisals for water/sewer system acquisitions, its impact on regulatory rate-making and ratepayers of acquired systems, and the path forward for distressed systems. McKiernan hopes to continue learning more about local government finance and structures to understand better how to develop comprehensive goals and plans for improving urban environments.

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Lisa Parshall

Lisa Parshall

Fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

Dr. Parshall is a professor of political science at Daemen University in Amherst, New York, specializing in American politics, public law, and public policy. She currently serves as the chair of the State and Local Politics Section of the New York State Political Science Association and is a past president of the Northeastern Political Science Association. Dr. Parshall’s research interest is in municipal development and reorganization in New York State. Her work with the Rockefeller Institute focuses on municipal reorganization and local government reform.

[email protected]

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Rahul Pathak

Rahul Pathak

Richard P. Nathan Public Policy Fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

Rahul Pathak is an assistant professor of public budgeting and financial management in the Marxe School of Public and International Affairs at the Baruch College, City University of New York (CUNY). He previously worked at the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at Georgia State University where he also received a PhD in public policy. His primary research interests lie at the intersection of public finance and social policy, with a particular focus on strengthening the functioning of subnational governments. He examines related issues in the domestic as well as international contexts. His research has appeared in journals such as Public Administration ReviewRegional Science and Urban Economics, and State Tax Notes. His recent research on the fiscal impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic has been published in the Journal of Public Budgeting Accounting and Financial Management and the Municipal Finance Journal.

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Jordan Perras

Jordan Perras

Vice President of ESG Strategy, Evergreen Residential

Jordan Perras is the vice president of ESG Strategy at Evergreen Residential, where she leads the firm’s sustainability and social impact initiatives. She holds a master’s of public administration from Cornell University with a concentration in social policy. At Cornell, Perras served as the 2021-2022 editor-in-chief of the Cornell Policy Review. Prior to her graduate studies, Perras served as a strategic associate at Amherst Holdings, a single-family residential investment platform, where she also held roles in investor relations and operations. She graduated from Northeastern University with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and business administration with a concentration in Finance.

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Laura Rabinow

Laura Rabinow

Deputy Director of Research, Rockefeller Institute of Government

Dr. Laura Rabinow is the deputy director of research for the Rockefeller Institute of Government, supporting the broad array of research conducted at the Institute and focusing her own research on environmental policy issues. Her prior work has moved between public policy research and practice. Most recently, she worked in the New York State Legislature in various roles, including as a chief of staff in the Assembly and as the environmental conservation, agriculture, and cultural affairs policy analyst in the Senate. Prior to her legislative experience, she worked in agricultural microfinance and foreign policy research. Dr. Rabinow’s more recent research considers New York State and federal policies with respect to drinking water and chemical contaminants, with a particular focus on the ways that public policy, social movements, and public health cultures co-construct the production of knowledge and ignorance about contaminants.

[email protected]

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Nic Rangel

Nic Rangel

Executive Director, Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York

Nic Rangel (she/her) is the executive director of the Legal Aid Society of Northeastern New York. Rangel sits on the President’s Committee on Access to Justice and is a New York State Bar Association member. She is a member of and serves as the lead for the Capital District National Lawyers Guild Chapter and is a regional deputy for the Hispanic National Bar Association Region II chapter. Rangel is also a member of the Capital District Black & Hispanic Bar Association, the Albany County Bar Association, the Capital District Women’s Bar Association, and the American Bar Association. Rangel sits on the advisory board for the Albany Law School Government Law Center, the Advisory Board for the University at Albany’s Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy, and the Board of Directors for the UAlbany Alumni Association. Prior to joining LASNNY, she was the second deputy counsel for the New York State Senate Majority, Counsel and Program Office. Rangel received her JD from Albany Law School and her MPA from the University at Albany Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy.

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April Roggio

April Roggio

Research Associate, Center for Policy Research, Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany

April M. Roggio coordinates a multi-institution research team focused on food system localization. Her recent work addresses issues of municipal interest in foodshed localization, participatory guarantee systems, collaborative governance, agricultural taxation policy, and cannabis legalization in New York State. She earned an MA in public policy and a PhD in public administration from the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs at the University at Albany, exploring the intersection of judgment and decision sciences using system dynamics modeling. She is a mother, activist, and scholar pursuing strategies to attain a more food-secure, regenerative, and prosperous world.

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Julia Selby

Julia Selby

Master of Public Administration Student, Cornell University

Julia Selby is a master of public administration student at Cornell University, concentrating in social policy. She started her career working for a homeless services organization and most recently worked as an intern at the Bipartisan Policy Center in the Terwilliger Center for Housing Policy. Selby serves as the editor-in-chief of the Cornell Policy Review, the public policy journal of the university. She graduated from Indiana University with a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and a certificate in management.

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Kathy Sheehan

Kathy Sheehan

Mayor, City of Albany

Mayor Kathy Sheehan is in her third term as Albany’s 75th mayor. Sheehan has dedicated her administration to creating a city of opportunity, leading with a commitment to equity and responsive government that includes diverse community voices. Under her leadership, the city has invested more than $100 million in new parks, streets, sidewalks, and water and sewer infrastructure across the city, with a focus on neighborhoods impacted by redlining and other historically discriminatory practices. Sheehan worked with the Common Council to enact groundbreaking equity legislation and policing reform initiatives and has led a multi-year effort to eliminate blight and sub-standard housing in the city.

Since Sheehan took office, Albany has seen $1 billion in new development citywide, with another $900 million in the pipeline—all indicators of continued historic investment in New York’s capital city. Her innovative streetlight purchase and conversion program has reduced Albany’s carbon emissions, improved pedestrian safety, and saved millions in taxpayer dollars. Additionally, her administration is further combatting climate change by planting 2,025 new trees by 2025, installing electric car charging stations throughout the city, and empowering its director of sustainability to keep the city on track to meet its 2030 climate goals.

Sheehan worked closely with federal, state, and local partners throughout the COVID pandemic to connect residents with food, PPE, and vital healthcare resources. She granted millions to support small businesses, tenants, and landlords, and secure $81 million in crucial federal funding to ensure the city’s continued fiscal health, and make $25 million in transformative investments across Albany. Sheehan served a four-year term as Albany’s treasurer prior to being elected mayor. Before serving in elected office, she served as vice president, general counsel, and corporate secretary of a publicly-traded medical device manufacturer. Sheehan is a graduate of Albany Law School and Bowling Green State University. She lives in Albany’s Arbor Hill neighborhood with her husband, Bob.

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Ada “Duxixi” Shen

Ada “Duxixi” Shen

Master of Regional Planning Student, Cornell University

Ada “Duxixi” Shen is as a master of regional planning student at Cornell University. Shen has been studying and practicing urban, rural, and regional planning for over seven years. She specializes in spatial data analysis, housing, and economic development, concentrating on urban justice and sustainability. Shen is also minoring in the Cornell Baker Program in real estate and infrastructure project management and finance (IPMF) certificate program. Before entering graduate school, Shen pursued a professional career as an economist at the global infrastructure consulting firm AECOM. She provided planning, development, and project operation strategies to developers and governments while receiving high regard from clients. She also collaborated with stakeholders during her internships in local city departments in China and the US.

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Carl Stenberg

Carl Stenberg

Professor, Public Administration and Government, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, School of Government

Carl Stenberg is the James E Holshouser Jr Distinguished Professor of Public Administration and Government at the School of Government, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His books Managing Local Government Services and Managing Local Government (co-authored with Kimberly Nelson) and Intergovernmental Relations in Transition (co-edited with David Hamilton) were recently published by ICMA, Sage, and Routledge, respectively. Stenberg is a fellow and former chair of the board of directors of the National Academy of Public Administration and past president of the American Society for Public Administration.

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Patricia Strach

Patricia Strach

Fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

Patricia Strach is a fellow at the Rockefeller Institute and principal investigator on the Institute’s Stories from Sullivan project, which examines how opioid use affects local communities and what local communities are doing to address it. Strach is a professor in the Departments of Political Science and Public Administration & Policy at the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy at the University at Albany. Her research examines public policy and mass politics. She is the author of Hiding Politics in Plain Sight: Cause Marketing, Corporate Influence, and Breast Cancer Policymaking (Oxford 2016), All in the Family: The Private Roots of American Public Policy (Stanford 2007), and articles appearing in Political Research Quarterly, Journal of Policy History, Polity, and American Politics Research. In 2008-2010 she was a Robert Wood Johnson Scholar in Health Policy Research at Harvard University. Strach received her doctorate in political science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2004.

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Mariana Torres

Mariana Torres

PhD Candidate, Environmental Health Sciences, University at Albany

Mariana Torres is a PhD candidate in environmental health sciences at the University at Albany School of Public Health. Her work in Mexico and the United States has shaped the study of food systems and their overlap with the environment and health. Her work has focused on food security, food policy, waste, and responses to food system shocks. Torres is a member of Multiscale Resilient, Equitable, and Circular Innovations with Partnership and Education Synergies (RECIPES) and the National Food Access and COVID Research Team (NFACT). Her recent work involves the development of a community-based model to understand the implications of New York State food policies on redistribution and waste of fresh produce surplus in the Capital Region.

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Nairobi Vives

Nairobi Vives

Chair, Albany Community Police Review Board

Nairobi Vives is an Albany native raised in the South End. Vives received her political science and economics undergraduate degree in 2009 from the University at Albany. Vives furthered her educational career at Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She then obtained her juris doctorate, cum laude, in May 2012 from Albany Law School, where she was a member of the Albany Government Law Review and the Karen C. McGovern Senior Prize Trial winner for “Best Oral Advocate.” Vives also held a judicial externship in the Albany Law Clinic & Justice Center with the Hon. Lawrence Kahn in US District Court for the Northern District of New York.

Vives has created a career in law defending clients in complex workers’ compensation litigation for the New York State Worker’s Compensation Board. Vives’s legal background is extensive, with experience in construction matters, employment claims, environmental law, and real property. She advises on matters involving diversity, equity, and inclusion. In addition, she spent two years as an associate counsel to the New York State Assembly, advising NYS assembly members and committee chairs on legal matters concerning legislation, program development, and budgeting. Vives engages in pro bono activities, such as the Legal Immigrant Detention Outreach Project, the Legal Project’s Uncontested Divorce Clinic, Albany County Bar Association’s “Attorney for a Day” Program, small business formation and consultation, and counseling various protest arrestees. Vives was appointed to the Albany Community Police Review Board (CPRB) in June 2020 and currently serves as its chair.

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Leigh Wedenoja

Leigh Wedenoja

Chief Economist, Rockefeller Institute of Government

Leigh Wedenoja, chief economist at the Rockefeller Institute of Government, specializes in education, labor, and health policy research. Her work focuses on assessing the causal impact of public policy using both quantitative and qualitative methods. She has worked with New York State agencies and nonprofit organizations on topics including the care workforce, employment for people with disabilities, civil service exams, K-12 and postsecondary education policy, and the overdose epidemic. Dr. Wedenoja is also a lecturer at the University at Albany in the graduate Department of Education Policy & Leadership and her work has appeared in academic publications and the popular press. Prior to joining the Rockefeller Institute, Dr. Wedenoja served as a postdoctoral research associate at Brown University and as administrator of the US Census Bureau’s Federal Statistical Research Data Center at Cornell University. She holds an MA and PhD in economics from Cornell University and a BA from the University of Michigan.

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Katie Zuber

Katie Zuber

Fellow, Rockefeller Institute of Government

Katie Zuber is a fellow at the Rockefeller Institute and a doctoral lecturer of political science, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York. Her research examines the role of law in collective struggle, with an emphasis on legal advocacy among sexual and gender minorities. She has worked on several collaborative projects featured in Law & Society Review, Justice System Journal, Political Communication, and Journal of Political Marketing. Dr. Zuber received her doctorate in political science from the University at Albany in 2017.

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