Find out what Hester Street staff members are up to and where you can meet us!


December 6 | Hindsight Conference | American Planning Association NY Chapter
New York, NY – Hester Street staff will be attending the 2019 Hindsight Conference. The theme of the conference this year is “Erasure, Remembrance, and Healing” with a focus on diversity and social equity in planning and community development. Learn more here.

December 4 | 46th Annual Awards Dinner | NY Housing Conference
New York, NY – Hester Street will be honored with the Public Service Award at the 46th NYHC Annual Awards Program Dinner. The theme of the program this year is “Inclusive By Design” which will be highlight NYC’s affordable housing practices and communities by and for the people. Learn more here.

October 15-18 | Conscious Cities Festival | Centre for Conscious Design & Pratt Institute
Brooklyn, NY – This annual festival will tackle pressing issues facing urban populations around the themes of Resilience, Families, Aging, and Mental Health. Hester Street, along with the Family Services Network and other partners, will be presenting on our work on the Bushwick Community Plan. Learn more here.

October 11 | Feedback+New York Summit | Feedback Labs
New York, NY – Hester Street staff  and the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development will be presenting on Where We Live NYC. The Summit brings together changemakers in philanthropy, aid and governance to ignite community experimentation and collaboration on constituent feedback.  Learn more here.

October 2-4 | Reclaiming Vacant Properties Conference | Center for Community Progress
Atlanta, GA – Hester Street, Tolemi and Harvard’s Ash Center will be on a panel discussion to present our work around equitable code enforcement for Cities RISE. The theme of the national conference this year is “Equity First: Revitalizing Communities Together”. Learn more here.

September 10 | Black Entrepreneurship Initiative Kickoff | NYC Small Business Services
New York, NY – Hester Street is partnering with SBS to engage Black entrepreneurs, small businesses and other stakeholders as the city seeks to develop a strategy and plan to address challenges and bolster opportunities for Black entrepreneurs. The kickoff event was held at the historic Apollo Theater in Harlem. Learn more here.

June 26-29 | Vanguard Conference | Next City
Newark, NJ – Deputy Director Nisha Baliga attended this national gathering that convenes urban leaders working to improve cities across sectors, including urban planning, community development, entrepreneurship, government, and more. Learn more here.

June 21 | 2019 Network Conference | Planner's Network
New York, NY – Hester Street joined Make the Road NY and VOCAL-NY for a panel discussion focused on “Community Control: Development to Combat Displacement”. This 2019 Conference theme is “Resisting Displacement and Dispossession”. Learn more here.

June 15 | Organizing for Change and Placemaking | Center for Court Innovation
New York, NY – Staff members Kim Ochilo, Daryle Ward-Cherry and Cesar Mesias attended this training and networking event at the Pratt Institute. Topics included organizing, placemaking, human-centered design, sustainability and public housing. Learn more here.

June 4 | 2019 Excellence in Design Awards | NYC Public Design Commission
New York, NY – Hester Street and Grain Collective were honored with an Excellence in Design Award for the renovation of  an underutilized East Village lot into a garden and greenhouse for residents at Project Renewal’s Third Street Men’s Shelter. The Ceremony was held at the Ford Foundation’s offices. Learn more here.

May 9 | Presentation to CBOs from Belarus | U.S. State Department
New York, NY – Deputy Director Nisha Baliga and Project Manager Jimena Veloz welcomed a delegation of community-based organizations from Minsk, Belarus to the Hester Street offices. Organized through the U.S. State Department, the group learned more about Hester Street’s mission, project work and experience.

April 15-17 | People + Places Conference | National Urban League
Arlington, VA – Director of Community Development Tenzing Chadotsang spoke on two panels focused on “Impacts of Policies and Politics on Communities of Color” and “Modern Inequity in Communities of Color”. The theme of the national conference was “Promoting community prosperity and racial equity”. Learn more here.

April 13 | Spaces & Places Conference | BlackSpace
Oakland, CA – Senior Project Associate Daryle Ward-Cherry attended this conference that assembled urbanists and community leaders for a day of learning and exchange highlighting Black Cultural Districts, affordable housing, community power and environmental justice. Learn more here.


November 16 | Annual Chapter Conference | American Planning Association NY Chapter
New York, NY – Hester Street attended this Conference and was awarded the APA’s Paul Davidoff Award for leadership in housing and equal opportunity for our work on the Bushwick Community Plan. Members of the BCP Steering Committee accepted the Award. Learn more here.

November 3 | Hindsight Conference | American Planning Association NY Chapter
New York, NY – Hester Street’s full staff attended the Conference and presented on three different panels — Think!Chinatown, equitable economic development; Where We Live NYC, the city-wide fair housing assessment; and community facility development. The Conference theme highlighted “Urban Planning through an Equity Lens”. Learn more here.

September 13-14 | Public Engagement Panel | City of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, PA – Senior Project Managers Julia Lindgren and Gabriel Halili were invited to Pittsburgh to present and discuss Hester Street’s work and innovative public engagement methods. They also met with the city’s Comprehensive Planning Team to discuss strategies, tools and ideas for bolstering community engagement efforts and activities.

June 6 | NFG 2018 National Convening | Neighborhood Funders Group
St. Louis, MO – Executive Director Betsy MacLean attended this conference themed “Raise Up: Moving Money for Justice” to connect with grantmakers committed to racial, social, economic, and gender justice. She also spoke on a panel about community self-determination and ownership alongside Surdna Foundation, South Bronx Unite and the Land Loss Prevention Project. Learn more here.

May 18 | Presentation to Urban Planners from Belgium | CityTech
New York, NY – Hester Street joined partners Grain Collective and WXY Studio to present to a group of urban planners from Belgium at the New York City College of Technology. Our staff presented our work on the East Harlem Neighborhood Plan and Prospect Park’s Rose Garden.

February 13 | Affordability as Infrastructure | Urban Design Forum
New York, NY – Executive Director Betsy MacLean joined public and private sector housing professionals to debate how to maintain and expand affordable housing in NYC. The discussion centered on possible strategies for balancing growth without exacerbating displacement. Learn more here.