Industrial designer and senior advisor.
After obtaining a design degree in Stockholm I have been working and experimenting with design matters for many years. Working for SVID, Swedish Industrial Design Foundation we sponsored the CITY MOVE event in 2009.
Mohamed Abbas is currently working full time in the field for T. G. Nickel & Associates, a Construction Management and General Contracting firm. Mohamed lives in Deer Park, which wasn't directly affected by flooding through sandy, but through high winds was a crippled town like many others throughout the island. He finished his senior year of college as the Student President of the Construction Management Association of America, Old Westbury Campus Chapter, an organization that helps students bridge the connection between their educational work in school, and the professional world in the field of construction and project management. As a Firefighter, EMT and Lifeguard, Mohamed has always loved helping people. He was heavily involved in Sandy emergency efforts prior to, and during the storm, as well as involved in recovery efforts after the storm. After serving his immediate community and the communities around him in a time of need.
An architect, planner and artist, Margaret Newman has lived and worked in New York City for 30 years. Committed to bringing inventive design to all aspects of our urban life, she explores what it means to live and work in one of the most vibrant cities in the world.
Margaret has provided leadership to revitalize New York City’s public realm. By emphasizing design excellence, prioritizing comprehensive planning, introducing emerging technologies, and facilitating inter-agency collaboration she has shaped a new direction for streetscape design.
The NYC Department of Transportation is the driving force behind many of the City’s recent initiatives and Margaret has a hand in virtually all of them. Developing and implementing a sustainability agenda alongside Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, Margaret is transforming Times Square into a pedestrian paradise, ushering in the era of efficient and high-performing LED streetlights, and setting consistent design standards for New York’s streets through the Street Design Manual. These innovations are hallmarks of the Bloomberg Administration that will benefit New York, its inhabitants, and visitors, and provide economic vitality by creating a stronger, more sustainable and resilient city.
Margaret has taught architecture and design at the New York Institute of Technology, The New School, and New York University, and regularly speaks at architecture, lighting, and planning conferences throughout the country and around the world.
Having lived and worked in over 15 countries, including Canada, U.K., U.A.E., Qatar, France, Spain, Egypt, Italy and throughout the United States, Sandy has had the opportunity of working in various specializations in the performing arts and events fields including: operas, musicals, cirque, concerts, trade shows, exhibits and other large scale events.
Sandy was introduced to the stage at an ear...ly age as a performer, and later went on to develop her passion for the performing arts in various technical and creative departments taking on roles of stage manager, events director, production coordinator, and assistant lighting designer for large scale productions and international tours.
After experiencing the different aspects of event management worldwide and noticing the amount of waste resulting from large scale events, Sandy returned to Canada and got certified by the Quebec Standards Bureau to implement their Sustainable Event Management
Standard into large scale events.
She later started collaborating on Diner en Blanc and played a key role into bringing the Diner en Blanc to New York in 2011. Following the success of the New York event, Sandy went on to become Partner at Diner en Blanc International and Director of International Development. She now manages 40 Diner en Blanc cities over 5 continents worldwide.
The former founder and CEO of a successful risk management software company, former Management and Computer Science professor at Yale, and now Founder and CEO of Zerofootprint, Dr. Dembo is focused on how we can use RiskThinking to mitigate and adapt to climate change. In his recent talks and publications, Dr. Dembo has focused on the untapped resource he sees in citizen engagement and its relationship to resilience and adaptation in the face of climate change.
Dr. Dembo began his career as an academic at Yale. Following that he founded and built Algorithmics Inc. into the world’s largest enterprise risk management software company until it was sold to Fitch in 2005 and then to IBM in 2012. Algorithmics was consistently honored as one of the 50 Best Managed Companies in Canada during his tenure. Honored as a lifetime Fields Institute Fellow in 2008 for his contribution to Mathematics in Canada, he is also an author of 3 books on risk management and has written and published numerous scientific research papers.
In addition to writing books, Dembo blogs for the Huffington Post and sits on numerous boards, including the Climate Change Adaptation Advisory Committee Canada and the UN HABITAT World Urban Campaign Steering Committee
Erin Hill is a singer, harpist, songwriter, and actor. She’s played and sung with Kanye West, Enya, a-ha, Cyndi Lauper, Levon Helm, moby, Randy Newman, Sinead O’Connor, Jewel, etc. and has played solo at the Royal Albert Hall. Erin is also known as Dave Chappelle’s “Pretty White Girl” from Comedy Central’s Chappelle’s Show.
Erin has had a #1 album on the Billboard world chart. USA Today premiered her sci-fi music video “Lookout, Science” as an exclusive. Erin won a 2013 Independent Music Award for her debut Erin Hill & her Psychedelic Harp album Girl Inventor. She was featured in an HBO “Game of Thrones” promo, playing the “Game of Thrones” theme on her harp, and is the voice & harp of Tafne for the upcoming 2103 Android video game “The Legacy of Barubash.” Erin also did Original Music and Sound Design (along with Mike Nolan) for the 2013 Drama Desk Award-nominated “That Play: a Solo Macbeth.”
In the film Clear Blue Tuesday, she is a composer, screenwriter, and actor; The New York Times said: “Erin Hill, as a giddy, harp-playing Trekker, is a standout… The best and funniest scene in the film is Ms. Hill’s.” Erin was also in the Tim Robbins film Cradle Will Rock (and appears on the soundtrack); HBO’s The Chris Rock Show; and PBS’s American Masters. She was seen most recently in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Classic Stage Company in NYC alongside Bebe Neuwirth and Christina Ricci (Newsday called her “the dangerously enjoyable Erin Hill”).
Currently Mack is writing the book Digested Metabolism, forthcoming from Princeton Architectural Press in 2015. The book explores eleven built projects by Japanese architects obsessed with housing conceived as “artificial land,” an approach promising social freedoms and environmental resilience in a country whose natural land is a problem.
After working with OMA in Hong Kong and New York, Mack opened Popular Architecture as a general practice guided by the creative engagement of flexibility and solar geometry. Recent commissions range from a wayfinding system for Lower Manhattan to a new master plan for a summer camp in New Hampshire.
At NYIT, Mack has taught Community Design and the China studio run in collaboration with Tongji University in Shanghai. At Parsons School of Constructed Environments, he co-developed and taught “Dynamic Exchanges,” a studio investigating Passive House design approaches in the context of urban housing.
Alex Alaimo, Assoc AIA, has contributed to his local AIAS Chapter and is currently a Project Manager for the chapters Freedom by Design Program. He is also an active member of AIA NY Emerging New York Architects (ENYA) committee and helped plan the AIA NY Future Now Summit in Fall 2012. In response to Sandy he founded the Operation Resilient Long Island (ORLI) a post disaster ideas accelerator that launched a global ideas competition to help local towns strategically plan rebuilding efforts. Currently he is working at Platt Byard Dovell White based in Manhattan and plans on getting licensed in the next three years. Alex is interested in new and alternative practices in architecture and plans to continue to contribute to professional and non-profit organizations. He is one of the founding members of Operation Resilient Long Island.
Lead planner at Goody Clancy (the American Planning Association’s “firm of the year” for 2013), David Dixon FAIA argues for redefining “resilience” in the face of rising sea levels into a powerful tool for shaping a generation of more robust, equitable cities.
We cannot slow the pace of sea level rise and we cannot retreat or move cities out of harm’s way. Instead, over the next three decades investments to protect vulnerable coastal cities will represent a global public works initiative unmatched since the Great Depression. In the US these investments will outpace, in dollars and impacts, the Interstate Highway and Urban Renewal programs of the 1950s and 60s. We need an urban resilience agenda that makes this investment about promoting the livability, diversity, and innovation that will position our cities—and society—thrive.
David is well placed to help define this agenda. He led the team that produced the post-Katrina Master Plan for New Orleans and in 2007 the American Institute of Architects awarded him its Thomas Jefferson Award for “a lifetime of … significant achievement in [planning]… livable neighborhoods, vibrant civic spaces, and vital downtowns ...”
In addition to his practice, David writes and speaks about the opportunities and challenges posed by urban revival. He and co-author Lance Brown FAIA are currently completing a second edition of Urban Design for and Urban Century (Wiley), which the Boston Globe’s critic described as "the wisest, clearest introduction I know to the art and science of designing cities."
Fernando Romero is the founding principal of FR-EE/Fernando Romero Enterprise, a 60-person architecture firm located in Mexico City and New York. Mr. Romero's work balances the interests of public and private entities while translating contemporary moments and culture through research, design, technology and construction. Mr. Romero seeks to re-define the norms of society by collaborating with global leaders on future ideas and initiatives which architecture can give form to.
In 2002, Fernando Romero was named a “Global Leader of Tomorrow” at the World Economic Forum. He was recently made a fellow of the American Institute of Architects and is a member of the CAMSAM - Mexican Chamber of Architects. In 2004, Mr. Romero received a Bauhaus Award for young designers. For his contribution to architecture in Mexico, Mr. Romero has received a Mexican Society of Architect Award. The Soumaya Mueum has been lauded as one of the best new museums in the world by Architizer, Wallpaper magazine, as well as winning the Spark Awards and American Property awards. Publications released by Fernando Romero include Translation (Actar, 2005), Hyperborder (Princeton Architectural Press, 2007), and Simplexity (Hatje- Cantz, 2010). In 2012, Fernando Romero launched a new book You Are The Context as an exploratory exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum. Most recently, FR-EE has been commissioned to design and is in the process of building more than 1 million m2 of projects, with works constructed in excess of 723,000 m2.
A native of China, Jing Liu received her education in China, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States, concluding with a Master of Architecture from Tulane University School of Architecture in New Orleans. In 2008 Liu founded SO – IL with Florian Idenburg, whom she met while working at SANAA on the Glass Pavilion at the Toledo Museum of Art.
As a partner of SO – IL, Liu has worked with numerous cultural institutions on their big and small adventures. Liu helped the London-based Frieze Art Fair in designing and realizing its acclaimed structure for the inaugural New York fair; curated the cross-disciplinary event series Stillspotting for the Guggenheim Museum; researched and re-envisioned museum education spaces together with the MoMA Education Department and installed highly experimental and interactive structure Pole Dance at PS1. Liu has also worked with prominent private and public clients on building their work spaces such as headquarter offices for Derek Lam and Ideo, as well as the renovation of the facade of Queen’s Bristol Royal Infirmary (BRI), a major landmark in the city of Bristol.
Outside of SO – IL, Liu is passionate about cities and their architectural fabric. During her time in New Orleans, Liu was deeply involved in researching and documenting the physical environment of economically distressed communities and experimenting with urban infill housing typologies for dislocated public housing residents. She helped establish Tulane Regional Urban Design Center (TRUDC) and worked on their inaugural projects for new town planning in Yangtze Delta, China, the location of her hometown, Nanjing. While exploring the issues of rapid urbanization through these projects, Liu also worked in partnership with the American Planning Association and the Mayor’s Institute on City Design and facilitated programs and discussions to help the planning officials with making better design decisions. With her position at multiple universities including Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation, Syracuse University and The Oslo School of Architecture and Design, Liu has led her students in delving into issues such as the preservation of the zono colonial in Santo Domingo, the first gridded city implemented in the Americas, and resilience design in post-Hurricane Sandy New York. Her studio projects have been part of the exhibitions at architectural biennales and generated valuable resources for public discussions on the important relationship between city planning and architecture.
Carter Brey is the Principal Cellist of the NY Philharmonic, a position he has held for nearly two decades. He has been a long standing member of the Habitat4Music advisory board and is a founding member of KahaneSwensenBrey, a new and exciting piano trio currently on the international scene.
Mr. Brey was appointed Principal Cellist of the New York Philharmonic in 1996, and made his debut as soloist with the Orchestra in May 1997, performing Tchaikovsky's Rococo Variations led by Kurt Masur. He has performed as soloist in subsequent seasons with conductors: André Previn, Christian Thielemann, Alan Gilbert, Lorin Maazel, Zubin Mehta, Christoph Eschenbach and Riccardo Muti.
Carter Brey is the recipient of the Gregor Piatigorsky Memorial Prize, the Avery Fisher Career Grant, and Young Concert Artists' Michaels Award. He was the first musician to win the Arts Council of America's Performing Arts Prize. Mr. Brey has performed as soloist with many of America's major symphony orchestras.
He has made regular appearances with the Tokyo and Emerson string quartets as well as the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the Spoleto Festival in the U.S. and Italy, among others.
Mr. Brey was educated at the Peabody Institute and at Yale University, where he studied with Aldo Parisot and was a Wardwell Fellow and a Houpt Scholar. He lives in New York City with his wife, Ilaria Dagnini Brey, and their two children, Ottavia and Lucas.
Illya Azaroff, AIA Founder of +LAB architects, a studio is built on trans-disciplinary collaboration. Experimentation and inquiry underpin his work, prototyping disaster relief shelters and rapid response systems. Illya is an Associate Professor at NYCCT (CUNY) and serves on the board of directors for AIANY, d3 architecture and AIANYS as the Regional Director for YAF Young Architects Forum. As Co-chair of DfRR-Design for Risk and Reconstruction committee, he plays a key role to the Post Sandy Initiative and the Post Sandy Initiative Report. He founded the AIA Regional Working Group with leaders from four regional states. Illya is a consultant to RCPT- Regional Catastrophic Planning Team and the Housing Recovery Center in NYC. He is an instructor with NDTPC-National Disaster Training Preparedness Center and part of RAMP-Resiliency Adaptation Mitigation and Planning program at Pratt Institute. Illya is trained in damage assessment (SAP) by Cal EMA. He has degrees in Geography and Architecture with research emphasis in climate related disasters and resilient building strategies.