The Broadsheet – Lower Manhattan’s Local Newspaper
BPCA Chair Will Depart to Serve as Next American Ambassador to Greece
George Tsunis, the chairman of the Battery Park City Authority since 2018 (shown here chatting with residents protesting in Rockefeller Park, last July) was recently confirmed as President Biden’s nominee to serve as the U.S. Ambassador to Greece.
Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) chairman George Tsunis has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the next American Ambassador to Greece, after being nominated to that post by President Joe Biden in October.
This development follows a hearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in January, in which Mr. Tsunis won praise from Senators on both sides of the aisle for his performance. Among the points he highlighted during the January hearing was the need for American foreign policy to reflect global strategic interests. When asked by Foreign Relations Committee member Cory Booker about the purchase of important infrastructure (such as Piraeus, Greece’s largest port) by Chinese firms, he cited a report from Senator Jim Risch (the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s ranking Republican) that called for greater U.S./European coordination to counter strategic challenges from China. This drew praise from Senator Bill Hagerty (also a Republican, and a former U.S. Ambassador to Japan), who cited Mr. Tsunis’s “very thoughtful answer and approach as a businessperson.”
After clearing the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, further consideration of Mr. Tsunis’s nomination was delayed for several weeks by other Senate business. When the confirmation vote was taken late on Thursday evening, it passed by a large, bi-partisan majority.
Mr. Tsunis speaks at a 2021 meeting of Community Board 1, as part of the community engagement that has characterized his tenure at the BPCA.
Mr. Tsunis, a businessman and philanthropist, first joined the BPCA board in June, 2016, after being nominated by then-Governor Andrew Cuomo. Two years later, Mr. Tsunis ascended to the chairmanship of the Authority’s board. (He has also served on the boards of the Javits Convention Center, Nassau University Medical Center, and Hofstra University.) Mr. Tsunis is additionally the founder of Chartwell Hospitality, a publicly traded real estate investment trust that owns a portfolio of more than 20 hotels in nine states.
During his tenure at the BPCA, the Authority moved aggressively to cultivate transparency and collaboration with the community. This push reached its zenith last summer, when Mr. Tsunis worked closely with neighborhood leaders who were opposed to a plan by Governor Cuomo to locate a monument to Essential Workers in Rockefeller Park. Mr. Tsunis met repeatedly with protestors camped out in the park, and then attended meetings of Community Board 1, to negotiate a compromise that paused the Governor’s plan, pending further review by an advisory panel to which multiple residents and local leaders were named.
BPCA spokesman Nick Sbordone said on behalf of the Authority, “we congratulate chairman Tsunis on his appointment as U.S. Ambassador to Greece, and thank him for his years of dedicated service to the Battery Park City community. Our best wishes for his continued success.”
Mr. Tsunis will be succeeded as BPCA chair, at least on an interim basis, by the Authority’s vice chair, Martha Gallo. The members of the BPCA board also have the option of designating Ms. Gallo (one of only two members of the BPCA board to live in the community) as the permanent chair of the Authority. Such a transition will also entail filling the BPCA board seat left vacant by Mr. Tsunis’s departure, which will likely prove contentious. Local leaders have advocated for more than a decade to have Authority board seats set aside for residents of the community that the BPCA governs. How responsive Governor Hochul (who appoints board members of the Authority) will be to this priority remains to be seen.
Join in on the fun featuring easy-to-follow Latin dance choreography while working on your balance, coordination and range of motion. Come prepared for enthusiastic instruction, a little strength training and a lot of fun. Participants are encouraged to bring their own equipment: weights, water bottle, hand towel etc. Proof of vaccination required. Free
Join Erin Andersen, Career Transition Coach & LinkedIn Marketing Strategist to learn how to optimize your LinkedIn profile and increase your visibility on the platform. Erin has helped 200+ clients take their LinkedIn presence to the next level. Not only will you create your most eye-catching profile yet, you’ll also learn all of the new features you should be utilizing to help your career take off. Free
In the century between 1847 and 1947, a handful of men and women changed the world. Many of them are well known—Marx, Freud, Proust, Einstein, Kafka. Others have vanished from collective memory despite their enduring importance in our daily lives. Without Rosalind Franklin, for example, genetic science would look very different. Without Fritz Haber, there would not be enough food to sustain life on earth. What do these visionaries have in common? They all had Jewish origins. Norman Lebrecht has devoted half of his life to researching the mindset of the Jewish intellectuals, writers, scientists, and thinkers who turned the tides of history and shaped the world today as we know it. His conclusions are featured in his book Genius & Anxiety: How Jews Changed the World, 1847-1947. Join the Museum for a conversation between Lebrecht and Museum Trustee Matthew Goldstein, former chancellor of the City University of New York, about Genius & Anxiety. Read the book ahead of time and submit your questions for the program’s Q&A session to email@example.com. Free; suggested $10 donation,
Watch the film at home, then enjoy a free virtual talkback with Columbia University Film Professor Richard Peña, former Program Director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center. Sure to be remembered as a landmark in Chinese cinema, this intensely felt epic marks a career cut tragically short: its debut director Hu Bo took his life in October 2017, at the age of 29. The protagonist of this modern reworking of the tale of Jason and the Argonauts is teenage Wei Bu, who critically injures a school bully by accident. Over a single, eventful day, he crosses paths with a classmate, an elderly neighbor, and the bully’s older brother, all of them bearing their own individual burdens, and all drawn as if by gravity to the city of Manzhouli, where a mythical elephant is said to sit, indifferent to a cruel world. Full of moody close-ups and virtuosic tracking shots, An Elephant Sitting Still is nothing short of a masterpiece. Free
Seven new works choreographed by Gibney Company Artistic Associates: Alexander Anderson, Zui Gomez, Jesse Obremski, Kevin Pajarillaga, Marla Phelan, Jie-Hung Connie Shiau, and Jake Tribus. Also at 2pm on March 18 and 19. $20-$50
From the host of NPR’s Planet Money, the deeply-investigated story of how one visionary, dogged investor changed American finance forever. Before Bill Gross was known among investors as the Bond King, he was a gambler. In 1966, a fresh college grad, he went to Vegas armed with his net worth ($200) and a knack for counting cards. $10,000 and countless casino bans later, he was hooked: so he enrolled in business school. The Bond King is the story of how that whiz kid made American finance his casino. Over the course of decades, Bill Gross turned the sleepy bond market into a destabilized game of high risk, high reward; founded Pimco, one of today’s most powerful, secretive, and cutthroat investment firms; helped to reshape our financial system in the aftermath of the Great Recession—to his own advantage; and gained legions of admirers, and enemies, along the way. Like every American antihero, his ambition would also be his undoing.
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Ethical and respectable gentleman, an IT Wizard, seeks a living/work space in BPC. Can be a Computer help to you and your business, or will guarantee $1,500 for rental. Reciprocal would be great!
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News Analysis & Opinion: Stop Driving Us Out of Our Homes
Why Parity Is a Parody of Affordability
If you live in Battery Park City, you likely received a letter in the mail recently from the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA), spreading a false narrative about how the Authority is “keeping Battery Park City affordable.” The truth is that the BPCA appears to be doing everything in its power to create and preserve luxury housing, along with a token number of low-income rental apartments. This is forcing out moderate- and middle-income homeowners and renters—who have built Battery Park City into the vibrant, thriving community it is today. And it is worth noting that 40 percent of owner-occupied homes in Battery Park City fall into the moderate- and middle-income categories. To read more…
Hometown School Makes Good
Community College in Tribeca Honored as Top School for Hispanics
The Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC) has been named one of the nation’s top ten two-year schools (by region) for Hispanic students, in rankings compiled by Hispanic Outlook on Education Magazine. Separately, BMCC (which is located on Chambers Street) has also been designated as the top-ranking City University of New York (CUNY) college in terms of awarding the highest number of degrees—a total of 2,062—to Hispanic students, and the highest-ranked college in the northeastern United States as measured by the same metric.
Manhattan Youth Calls Upon Hue to Brush Aside Violence
Manhattan Youth will bring local children and their families together tomorrow (Saturday, March 12) to paint a Mural of Hope in front of the Downtown Community Center (120 Warren Street, near the corner of West Street), from 10:30 am through noon.
The Mural of Hope will honor the families of Ukraine, who have reason to fear for their lives during the current invasion by Russia, explains Manhattan Youth executive director Bob Townley, who says, “we must never let hate have the last word. We must pursue peace as much as we can. If everyone wanted peace, we would have peace.”
City Says Planned Improvements to East River Waterfront Are On Hold
The February 22 meeting of Community Board 1 (CB1) included an update about long-planned improvements to the East River Esplanade, some of which are being cancelled.
Paul Goldstein, the chair of CB1’s Waterfront, Parks & Cultural Committee, said, “we got a report from Economic Development Corporation [EDC] regarding some of their waterfront assets and projects that are ongoing—or not.” (The EDC is a not-profit corporation controlled by City government, which oversees development of assets, such as publicly owned property.)
“Unfortunately, a lot this project is not moving ahead for a variety of reasons,” Mr. Goldstein explained, “the biggest one being that the City is focusing much more on resiliency, and they don’t want to go ahead with improvements that may interfere with that.” To read more…
‘By the Grace of God’
Reverend Phillip Jackson Installed as Trinity Church’s Nineteenth Rector
Lower Manhattan has a new spiritual leader: The Reverend Phillip A. Jackson was installed as the 19th Rector of Trinity Church on February 26, in a ceremony steeped in tradition. The observance began outside the front door of the Church, where Rev. Jackson was ritually handed the bronze keys to Trinity and nearby St. Paul’s Chapel, as he recited, “I accept the keys and with them the temporalities, profits, and appurtenances of the Rectorship.” His voice catching, he continued, “and by the grace of God I will faithfully perform the duties of my office, so long as it may please God to continue me in it.” To read more…
Lower Manhattan Greenmarkets
Greenwich Street & Chambers Street
Every Wednesday & Saturday, 8am-3pm
Food Scrap Collection: Saturdays, 8am-1pm
Open Saturdays and Wednesdays year round
Bowling Green Greenmarket
Green Greenmarket at Bowling Green
Broadway & Whitehall St
Open Tuesday and Thursdays, year-round
Market Hours: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Compost Program: 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.
The Bowling Green Greenmarket brings fresh offerings from local farms to Lower Manhattan’s historic Bowling Green plaza. Twice a week year-round stop by to load up on the season’s freshest fruit, crisp vegetables, beautiful plants, and freshly baked loaves of bread, quiches, and pot pies.
Fulton Street cobblestones between South and Front Sts. across from McNally Jackson Bookstore.
Locally grown produce from Rogowski Farm, Breezy Hill Orchard, and other farmers and small-batch specialty food products, sold directly by their producers. Producers vary from week to week.
SNAP/EBT/P-EBT, Debit/Credit, and Farmers Market Nutrition Program checks accepted at all farmers markets.
Today in History
44 BC – Julius Caesar, Dictator of the Roman Republic, is stabbed to death by Marcus Junius Brutus, Gaius Cassius Longinus, Decimus Junius Brutus, and several other Roman senators on the Ides of March.
856 – Michael III, emperor of the Byzantine Empire, overthrows the regency of his mother, empress Theodora (wife of Theophilos) with support of the Byzantine nobility.
493 – Christopher Columbus returns to Spain after his first trip to the Americas.
1783 – In an emotional speech in Newburgh, New York, George Washington asks his officers not to support the Newburgh Conspiracy. The plea is successful and the threatened coup d’йtat never takes place.
1819 – French physicist Augustin-Jean Fresnel wins a contest at the Acadйmie des Sciences in Paris by proving that light behaves like a wave. The Fresnel integrals, still used to calculate wave patterns, silence skeptics who had backed the particle theory of Isaac Newton.
1874 – France and Vietnam sign the Second Treaty of Saigon, further recognizing the full sovereignty of France over Cochinchina.
1906 – Rolls-Royce Limited is incorporated.
1916 – President Woodrow Wilson sends 4,800 United States troops over the U.S.–Mexico border to pursue Pancho Villa.
1922 – After Egypt gains nominal independence from the United Kingdom, Fuad I becomes King of Egypt.
1927 – The first Women’s Boat Race between the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge takes place on The Isis in Oxford.
1931 – SS Viking explodes off Newfoundland, killing 27 of the 147 on board.
1951 – Iranian oil industry is nationalized.
1990 – Mikhail Gorbachev is elected as the first President of the Soviet Union.
1611 – Jan Fyt, Flemish painter (d. 1661)
1767 – Andrew Jackson, seventh President of the United States (d. 1845)
1835 – Eduard Strauss, Austrian composer and conductor (d. 1916)
1854 – Emil von Behring, German physiologist and physician, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1917)
1878 – Reza Shah, Iranian king (d. 1944)
1887 – Marjorie Merriweather Post, American businesswoman and philanthropist, founded General Foods (d. 1973)
1932 – Alan Bean, American captain, pilot, and astronaut
1943 – Sly Stone, American singer-songwriter, musician, and producer
44 BC – Julius Caesar, Roman general and statesman (b. 100 BC)
493 – Odoacer, first king of Italy after the fall of the Western Roman Empire (b. 433)
1959 – Lester Young, American saxophonist and clarinet player (b. 1909)