Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Daniel Muniz

Daniel Muniz works for the New York City Department of Transportation where he has served as a Legal Consultant, Analyst, Senior Analyst, Deputy Director, and more recently as the Acting Chief of Staff for the Sidewalk Program. His current role focuses on Program Management which includes budgeting, planning, project delivery, and most importantly – the construction of sidewalks throughout all five boroughs of New York City. Improving New York City’s sidewalk infrastructure and making it more accessible to all pedestrians is the key driver of all his work.

1.What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

I would say YPT Happy hour! Being able to connect with fellow transportation enthusiasts in a laid-back social setting allows everybody to network and share experiences. It’s the best way to get to know others and engage with people in the transportation field.

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 

I am probably biased because I live in Rockland County but being able to take a “one-seat” train ride directly into Manhattan without having to do multiple connections/transfers would be a huge improvement. There are options available such as driving to Tarrytown/White Plains and taking Metro-North or riding a Coach bus but commute times aren’t the best. There is talk in Congress to change this, so I am hopeful this will come to fruition.

3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry?

The transportation industry lured me in when I started my first job as a Legal consultant assigned to the NYC Department of Transportation. I was researching trip and fall claims related to the City’s infrastructure and that’s where I first started learning about the Agency and its operations. I obtained a B.S. in International Relations and Politics, so naturally, my next step was to go to Law School. However, by the time I became an Analyst for the Sidewalk Program, my interest quickly shifted to Public Administration and Urban Planning. Understanding how our cities connect and how the movement of people influences community development was what ultimately pulled me into the transportation world.

 
4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  

I introduced a model to prioritize sidewalk repairs around New York City Housing developments. We were able to build out a tool in ArcGIS that automated a ranking system based on inputs that accounted for both condition and demographic scores. This allowed us to factor equity more easily into the work we did. It’s been two years since we started piloting this new tool and we are looking to expand its use for other work we do. Shout out to the team of analysts and our Information Technology team for making that project a reality! We are also working on a complete overhaul for all our internal databases and incorporating them all into one centralized system. Being a part of the engineering of a completely new system that will handle all our operations in a more efficient way is truly rewarding.

5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

Be curious and ask questions! Try to find an area that you feel most connected with and surround yourself with others that are already in the field. Networking events and socials may not be your cup of tea, but once you get out there and start making connections, it all becomes a lot easier.


6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement?

Not sure why, but I feel Samuel L. Jackson would be a perfect fit for that role. 

Categories
newsletter

July News & Events

CELEBRATING INDEPENDENCE!

Between barbecues, fireworks, working from home, and/or returning to our offices this month, we reflect on the meaning of independence and what that means for us personally, for members of our professional community, and for the New York City region. 

At its best, transportation provides us with the independence to access our jobs, friends, family, school, groceries, health services, and more. For many, insufficient transportation options limit independence. We are reflecting on mobility throughout our region, and where there is seamless connectivity as well as where there may be harder to reach areas or mobility challenges. Connect with us on social media with your thoughts and ideas! 

Photo by Mike Szpot, 2021. Celebrating the Wins, Photography Exhibit. South Street Seaport. @illkoncept. 

YPT-NYC JULY EVENTS
 

Outdoor Happy Hour
Pier 5 Picnic Area at Brooklyn Bridge Park, July 22nd at 6:00 p.m.

Join YPT-NYC for a casual happy hour at the Pier 5 Picnic Area in Brooklyn Bridge Park on Thursday, July 22nd at 6:00 p.m. Come hang out and connect with some fellow YPT’ers. YPT will provide some drinks and snacks, but please feel free to bring anything else you would like for yourself (or to share). No fear — there will be bathrooms nearby!
Sign up here!

In-Person Subway Tours 

Join us to explore the purpose, politics, and possibilities of NYC’s public transportation infrastructure!

Tour highlights:

  • See how the subway and railroads continue to influence the planning and development of the NYC region of 20+ million people.
  • Learn about the history of the NYC subway as well as the PATH subway and the country’s busiest commuter railroads.
  • Discover today’s challenges, from governance to climate change, and learn about tomorrow’s possibilities for the region’s built environment.
  • Explore how the subway operates and learn about some of the technology keeping it moving 24/7.
  • Experience the design of new, old, and abandoned stations and uncover secrets hidden in plain sight.

Sign up is via Airbnb below:
Downtown Manhattan: Saturday, July 17th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Midtown Manhattan: Saturday, July 24th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Queens and Manhattan: Saturday, July 31st, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Registrants will receive details through Airbnb after signing up. Please feel free to attend one or all of the tours. Since there is a 10 person limit for each tour, kindly cancel if you’re no longer able to attend. Note that the price for YPT members is $1 (minimum to cover Airbnb’s insurance fee). Also, please bring a MetroCard with 1 loaded fare (or a device with OMNY contactless tap capability). Tours visit areas open to the public and do not access any restricted areas.

Transportation Research Forum NY: NJT “While You’ve Been Away” Virtual Presentation
Friday, July 23rd at 1:00 p.m.

Kevin S. Corbett, President & CEO of New Jersey Transit, will be discussing what NJT has done in terms of capital projects, technology advances, customer experience enhancements, and improvements in service, safety, and reliability to prepare the system for customers’ return as we emerge from the pandemic. Please RSVP to yptnyc@gmail.com before 7/23 and you will be emailed the access information from the Transportation Research Forum.

TransportationCamp PHL Summer Gathering (In-Person) 
Saturday July 24th 

Itching to get back out and explore? Maybe meet some people who aren’t Zoom icons? Great news – our friends at YPT Philly are running the first ever TransportationCamp PHL Summer Gathering on Saturday July 24th! Connect with other transportation enthusiasts and explore the great city of Philadelphia for a leisurely, transit-centric day. Bonus: if you take Amtrak there, check out the Moynihan Train Hall!


See more details and registration on Eventbrite!


YPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE

Antonio Sieunarine, Analyst at MTA New York City Transit

Antonio Sieunarine is an Analyst at the Department of Subways Rail Control Center. His current work is focused on the Rail Control Center’s capital projects, including NYCT signal modernization efforts. Previously, Antonio worked for the Newark Downtown District BID as an urban planner, and he also worked in the aviation industry as an aerial survey pilot and mission specialist conducting LiDAR mapping across the continental United States. Antonio holds an MUP from CUNY Hunter College and a B.S. in Commercial Aviation from the University of North Dakota. In his free time, he enjoys hiking and running, and you can also find him staring at the sky anytime an airplane flies overhead. 

What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

My favorite YPT-NYC event is the summer tour series. I love them for two reasons: being able to host YPT-NYC tours at the Rail Control Center pre-pandemic, and being a participant in tours of other facilities. I am keeping my fingers crossed and looking forward to hosting YPT-NYC tours at the RCC again once it is safe to do so. 

How did your role at the MTA change during the pandemic?

The pandemic was a challenging time at the MTA, when many of my colleagues made the ultimate sacrifice. Their names should never be forgotten. I, along with members of my team, were part of the effort to set up a contact tracing effort within Service Delivery for our Train Operators, Conductors, Dispatchers, and other Service Delivery personnel. In addition to performing the duties of contact tracing, these calls to colleagues were also about being a caring and empathetic voice on the other end. Many of my colleagues were quarantined and alone, very sick, and appreciated having someone to talk to during such a difficult moment. The peak of the pandemic saw late nights and weekends where contact tracing calls were made. We knew we had the moral duty to do everything we could to protect and keep our fellow colleagues safe. View the MTA’s Virtual Covid Memorial here. 

What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 

This world is an amazing place and the transportation industry facilitates my wandering nature. Whether it is a short trip locally or a different continent, the ability to experience unique things on a local, regional, and global level is one of the amazing things that the transportation industry enables. 

What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  

We are currently expanding the usable footprint of the Rail Control Center as we work towards centralization of control and signal modernization efforts across the B-Division (lettered lines). We will have one of the largest video walls by area once this project is completed. The video wall will allow us to manage service and assist in the incident handling process. I look forward to giving fellow YPT’ers a future tour of this space.   

What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

I would advise a fellow YPT’er to remain curious and let that drive your career path. I have focused on the things I am passionate about and it has led to forward progress and career success. 


RECENT YPT-NYC EVENTS

Thanks to all the participants who joined us for the fun and educational events in June!

  • GIS/Illustrator Skill Share with Sam Sklar
  • June Subway Tours 
  • YPT-NYC Central Park Picnic
  • The Future of NYC Transportation System, a Conversation with Dick Ravitch
  • Virtual Tour: Historic NYC Aerial Imagery

Help us understand what skills our community wants to learn and share! If you have a skill or are interested in learning a skill, please let us know on our Skill Share Form.

CHECK YOUR MEMBERSHIP STATUS & RENEW TODAY!

Check your membership status here, or join here. Please consider registering with your personal email rather than your work or student email. Being an active member is $20 for the year and allows us to provide our membership with impactful programming. YPT-NYC is an official 501(c)(6) non-profit organization that provides benefits to its members through professional development, fellowship, and networking. 

YPT-NYC LINKEDIN

Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork! Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!


Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is the local chapter of Young Professionals in Transportation International, a nonprofit coalition of organizations, which helps professional development, fellowship, and networking for young professionals in the transportation field. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks

Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Antonio Sieunarine

Antonio Sieunarine is an Analyst working at the Department of Subways Rail Control Center. His current work focuses on capital projects that interfaces with the Rail Control Center including NYCT signal modernization efforts. Before arriving at the MTA, Antonio worked for the Newark Downtown District BID as an Urban Planner. Antonio also worked in the aviation industry as an aerial survey pilot and mission specialist conducting LiDAR mapping across the continental United States. Antonio holds an MUP from CUNY Hunter College and a B.S. in Commercial Aviation from the University of North Dakota. When not at work, he enjoys hiking and running. You can also find him staring at the sky anytime an airplane flies overhead.    

1.What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

My favorite YPT-NYC event is the Summer Tour Series. I love them for two reasons; being able to host YPT-NYC Tours at the Rail Control Center pre-pandemic and being a participant in tours of other facilities. I am keeping my fingers crossed and looking forward to hosting YPT-NYC tours at the RCC again once it is safe to do so. 

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 

Wearing my transportation planner hat I would like to see true integration across the various agencies providing rail service across the Tri-State Region.

3. How did your role at the MTA change during the pandemic?

The pandemic was a challenging time at the MTA where many of my colleagues made the ultimate sacrifice and their names should never be forgotten. I along with members of my team were part of the effort to stand up a contact tracing effort within Service Delivery for our Train Operators, Conductors, Dispatchers, and other Service Delivery personnel. In addition to performing the duties of contact tracing, these calls to colleagues were also about being a caring and empathetic voice on the other end. Many of my colleagues were quarantined and alone, very sick, and appreciated having someone to talk to during such a difficult moment. The peak of the pandemic saw late nights and weekends where contact tracing calls were made. We knew we had the moral duty to do everything we could to protect and keep our fellow colleagues safe. https://new.mta.info/covid-memorial

 
4. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 

This world is an amazing place and the transportation industry facilitates my wandering nature. Whether it is a short trip locally or a different continent, the ability to experience unique things on a local, regional, and global level is one of the amazing things that the transportation industry enables. 

5. What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  

We are currently expanding the usable footprint of the Rail Control Center as we work towards centralization of control and signal modernization efforts across the B-Division (Lettered Lines). We will have one of the largest video wall by area once this project is completed. The video wall will allow us to manage service and assist in the incident handling process. I look forward to giving fellow YPT’ers a future tour of this space.   

6. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path? 

I would advise a fellow YPT’er to remain curious and let that drive your career path. I have focused on the things I am passionate about and it has led to forward progress and career success. 

7. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement? 

If Don LaFontaine was still with us, I would be delighted to hear his voice making an announcement in the NYCT Subway System.

Categories
newsletter

June 2021 Newsletter

CELEBRATING PRIDE AND NATIONAL SAFETY MONTH! 

Pete Buttigieg, U.S. Secretary of Transportation, is the first openly gay cabinet member in our nation’s history and his appointment is a milestone in the transportation industry. He holds a key role in the Biden Administration to achieve distributional justice and climate goals with infrastructure investments. We honor all the contributions that LGBTQ people have made in transportation, and we celebrate those in our community! 

It is also National Safety Month, and in the transportation sector, safety has taken on a new meaning during the pandemic. Additional cleaning staff have been deployed, air filtration vents installed, contract tracing initiated, social distancing and face masks required, and new safety protocols established. We honor all the people that work to keep us moving safely! 
 

Jim Powers – Mosaic Trail, 2020. This new installation is on a pedestrian refuge island at 1st Ave and St. Marks Place, and Powers created many others in the East Village since 1985.

CHECK YOUR MEMBERSHIP STATUS & RENEW TODAY!

Check your membership status here, or become a member here ($20 annual fee). Please consider registering with your personal email rather than your work or student email. 


YPT-NYC JUNE EVENTS
 

GIS/Illustrator Skill Share with Sam Sklar
Thursday, June 10 7:00-8:30 p.m.

Join us for our first Skill Share event of 2021, where we bring in experts from the transportation field to share their technical and creative skills!

In this interactive workshop, YPT member Sam Sklar, a Transportation Research Specialist and Communications Strategist, will walk attendees through how to use Adobe Illustrator to beautify GIS outputs and create visualizations that are engaging and informative. The workshop will cover concepts like color theory, layout design, processing, and more. Read more about Sam’s work and focus on his blog: sklar.substack.com

One day before the workshop, YPT will send a data package along with instructions for downloading QGIS and a free trial of Adobe Illustrator to those who are registered.

Click here to register.

Help us understand what skills our community wants to learn and share! If you have a skill or are interested in learning a skill, please let us know on our Skill Share Form.


In-Person Subway Tours 

Join us to explore the purpose, politics, and possibilities of NYC’s public transportation infrastructure.

Sign up is via Airbnb below:
Queens and Manhattan: Saturday, June 12th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Brooklyn & Manhattan: Saturday, June 19th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Lower Manhattan: Saturday, June 26th, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Please feel free to attend one or all of the tours. Since there is a 10 person limit for each tour, kindly cancel if you’re no longer able to attend. Note that the price is $1 for Airbnb’s insurance fee. 


Central Park Picnic at the Sheep Meadow 
Sunday, June 13, 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. (Rain Date: Saturday, June 19, same time)

Join us for a casual picnic in the Sheep Meadow in Central Park!  Pet-friendly, comfy grass, close-to-bathrooms, and frisbee friendly. Please bring whatever you may need for yourself. 

The specific coordinates of our location will be emailed out to registrants on the day of, so stay tuned!

Click here to register.


The Future of NYC Transportation System, a Conversation with Dick Ravitch
Wednesday, June 16, 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Image credit: William E. Sauro/The New York Times

Dick Ravitch has earned a reputation for his political savvy, business skill, and commitment to social responsibility throughout his decades-long career in government and business. He is renowned for his work to fix numerous fiscal crises in the public sector. Our community may know him best for his work as Chairman and CEO of the MTA from 1979 to 1983. He successfully transformed a system struggling with disinvestment and disrepair by reorganizing its management structure (including establishing Metro-North Railroad) and developing a long-term capital plan. With the MTA undergoing another transformation amidst a global pandemic and fiscal uncertainty, there are parallel challenges today. He remains an outspoken proponent of investing in our cities, infrastructure, and public sector workforce in the wake of the pandemic. 

Click here to register.


Virtual Historic NYC Aerial Imagery Tour
Wednesday, June 23, 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. 

Back by popular demand, join us over lunch as we explore the five boroughs as they were in 1924, using high resolution aerial imagery available publicly from the NYC Department of City Planning. We will dive into the history of the city’s development, looking into infrastructure projects underway at the time and comparing the built environment of almost 100 year ago with today’s reality. 

Click here to register.


 
YPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE

Leah Flax, Government Relations Specialist, Government and Community Relations, MTA  

Leah Flax is an urban planner with expertise in public transportation, policy analysis, and partnership building. She currently works on bus and subway projects throughout Manhattan as a Government Relations Specialist at the MTA. Leah previously held positions 100 Resilient Cities, at the U.S. DOT, the Louis Berger Group (now WSP), and with the NYC DOT and Taxi & Limousine Commission. Leah lives in Fort Greene, Brooklyn where she serves on the board of the Myrtle Avenue Revitalization Project.

1. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 
I would make local buses and subways free.

2. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 
The liberating feeling of taking the local bus to the YMCA as a middle schooler, and not having to rely on someone to drive me, sparked my passion for public transit. Shout out to Norwalk Transit District!

3. What are you working on that you’re most excited by? 
The 42 St Connection Project is going to completely modernize the 42 St Shuttle and give customers at Times Square and Grand Central Station greater accessibility, reliability, and more space to move around. The project also includes renovated entrances at Grand Central Station which are already complete, and have made a huge improvement to the traveler experience – when I use them it gives me a lot of pride and joy to have contributed to the project.

4. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?  
Whether you know what your dream job is or not, with every position you take remember to learn and grow as much as you can and cherish the relationships you build along the way. 

5. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice an NYCT Subway Announcement? 
BD Wong.


RECENT YPT-NYC EVENTS

Congestion Pricing, a Conversation with Sam Schwartz 
We had a great turnout for our conversation with “Gridlock Sam”! Sam gave YPTers a history lesson on the origins of congestion pricing in the U.S., its impacts in other cities abroad, and new policies and legislation moving forward. 

Virtual Speed Networking 
This was our first time hosting our annual speed networking event virtually, and it was a success! We paired experienced transportation professionals with younger professionals and recent graduates to help them learn about career options and opportunities. 

Lawn Day 
We had a blast in Prospect Park playing Kubb and Frisbee during our first in-person event of the year! 

Creator Talk with Andrew Lynch a.k.a. Vanshnookenraggen
Thank you to everyone who joined our first Creator Talk with Andrew Lynch! We had a very informative presentation and discussion from Lynch about the unbuilt, proposed, and future transportation systems across the United States.


YPT-NYC LINKEDIN

Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork!
Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!
 

Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is the local chapter of Young Professionals in Transportation International, a nonprofit coalition of organizations, which helps professional development, fellowship, and networking for young professionals in the transportation field. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks.

Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Leah Flax

Leah Flax (@ResilientLeah), Government Relations Specialist, Government and Community Relations, MTA

Leah Flax is an urban planner with expertise in public transportation, policy analysis, and partnership building. She currently works on bus and subway projects throughout Manhattan as a Government Relations Specialist at the MTA. Before joining the MTA, Leah worked at 100 Resilient Cities where she developed a suite of tools used by cities globally to apply resilience thinking in urban planning and project development. Leah previously held positions at the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Louis Berger Group (now WSP), and with the City of New York at the Department of Transportation and Taxi & Limousine Commission. Leah lives in Fort Greene, Brooklyn where she serves on the board of the Myrtle Avenue Revitalization Project.

1. What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  

Trivia – you do not want me on your team, I am terrible at it, but the competition is fun and I always learn new things.

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be? 

I would make local buses and subways free.

3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 

The liberating feeling of taking the local bus to the YMCA as a middle schooler, and not having to rely on someone to drive me, sparked my passion for public transit. Shout out to Norwalk Transit District!

4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by? 

The 42 St Connection Project is going to completely modernize the 42 St Shuttle and give customers at Times Square and Grand Central Station greater accessibility, reliability, and more space to move around. The project also includes renovated entrances at Grand Central Station which are already complete, and have made a huge improvement to the traveler experience – when I use them it gives me a lot of pride and joy to have contributed to the project.

5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

Whether you know what your dream job is or not, with every position you take remember to learn and grow as much as you can and cherish the relationships you build along the way. 

6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice an NYCT Subway Announcement? 

BD Wong!

Categories
newsletter

May 2021 Newsletter

CELEBRATING ASIAN-AMERICAN AND PACIFIC ISLANDER HERITAGE MONTH
AND BIKE MONTH!

 

We honor all the contributions that Asian-American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) people have made in transportation, such as for U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Yoshio Mineta, Aviation Pioneer Hazel Ying Lee, Materials Engineer Abdus Suttar Khan, Railroad Foreman Chin Lin Sou, and the first Chinese-American who traveled to outer space, Taylor Gun-Jin Wang. We celebrate all AAPI members of our community this month! 

May is also a time to celebrate active transportation! Since the pandemic began, there has been a surge in biking in NYC. In response, the City has established 80 miles of Open Streets, and there are roughly 50 miles of new bike lane projects in the works that will expand the current 1,375 mile bike network. Providing dedicated bike infrastructure goes a long way towards improving safety and comfort for people on bikes. Whether you ride a bike or not, we can celebrate this progress in local and regional mobility!
 

Ai Weiwei – Forever Bicycles, 2014, 1,254 bicycles. Dimensions variable. Installation view, Waller Creek Delta, The Contemporary Austin – Museum Without Walls Program, Austin, Texas, 2017, photo: Brian Fitzsimmons/The Contemporary Austin.
 

YPT-NYC MAY EVENTS
 

Congestion Pricing, a Conversation with Sam Schwartz 
Tuesday, May 4, 2021 at 6:30 p.m.

Join YPT-NYC for a conversation with Sam Schwartz, a.k.a. “Gridlock Sam,” on New York City’s congestion pricing plan. Mr. Schwartz, former New York City traffic commissioner and CEO of Sam Schwartz Consulting, has been an advocate for congestion pricing for over a decade. Mr. Schwartz has kept the topic front and center in public discourse, creating his own congestion pricing plan proposal and forming a broad coalition of supporters through the Move NY campaign. Mr. Schwartz recently served on the New York State’s congestion pricing task force and helped to formulate the current plan. Mr. Schwartz will share the latest updates on congestion pricing and its role in New York City’s COVID recovery.
RSVP will close on May 4 at 5:00 p.m., and an event link will be sent to attendees shortly thereafter.

Click here to register. 

Virtual Speed Networking 
Wednesday, May 19 at 6:00 p.m.

Our Virtual Speed Networking event is coming up soon on May 19, 2021. This event will take place on Zoom at 6:00 p.m. Similar to speed dating, recent graduates and early-career transportation professionals will be paired with experienced transportation professionals in breakout rooms in ten-minute intervals. This is a great opportunity to learn about different career options in transportation!

Click here to register.

Lawn Day 
Saturday, May 22 from 2:00-5:00 p.m

Join YPT NYC as we gather for some socially distant lawn games to refresh our motor and/or social skills after more than a year hunched over our laptops. We will provide games like Kubb, badminton, and bocce. Bring your own snacks, chairs, masks, and blankets for a low-key lawn event in Brooklyn’s front yard: Prospect Park! We will gather by the center of the Long Meadow Ball Fields. Rain Date: May 23.

Click here to register. 

Creator Talk with Andrew Lynch a.k.a. vanshnookenraggen
Wednesday, May 26 at 6:30 p.m.

Andrew Lynch, more widely known as vanshnookenraggen, is a New York based cartographer and transit activist. For nearly 20 years he has been documenting subways and exploring the rich history of unrealized transit expansion. Lynch is the Chief Design Officer at QueensLink, a project he helped launch, reimagining the abandoned Rockaway Beach Branch as a co-transit and park corridor through central Queens. Join Lynch as he takes you on a tour of lost futures from the past and places we still may travel.
Learn more about Andrew Lynch’s work here.

Click here to register.

YPT-NYC UPCOMING EVENTS
 

The Future of NYC Transportation System, a Conversation with Dick Ravitch
Wednesday, June 9 at 12:30 p.m.

Image credit: William E. Sauro/The New York Times

Dick Ravitch has earned a reputation for his political savvy, business skill, and commitment to social responsibility throughout his decades-long career in government and business. He is renowned for his work to fix numerous fiscal crises in the public sector. He served as New York’s Lieutenant Governor from 2009-2010 in the midst of the Great Recession. However, our community may know him best for his work as Chairman and CEO of the MTA from 1979 to 1983. Ravitch successfully transformed a system struggling with disinvestment and disrepair by reorganizing its management structure (including establishing Metro-North Railroad) and developing a long-term capital plan for systemwide rehabilitation. With the MTA undergoing another transformation amidst a global pandemic and fiscal uncertainty, there are parallel challenges today. He remains an outspoken proponent of investing in our cities, infrastructure, and public sector workforce in the wake of the pandemic. Please join us for a conversation with Dick Ravitch to learn valuable lessons from his experience in navigating politics (including in his autobiography So Much to Do), the merits of careers in public service, and his outlook on the future of New York. 

Click here to register.

RECENT YPT-NYC EVENTS

Game Night

Thank you to everyone who joined our Game Night on
Backyard.co. We had a blast playing pictionary and cards against humanity! 

 
YPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE

Dubary Brea, Deputy Director of Federal Transit Administration Grant Programs, NYC Department of Transportation

Bio

Dubary Brea manages a team that oversees the financial and programmatic management of over $500M in federal and state funding for infrastructure projects across NYC at NYC DOT. Previously, Dubary spent five years at the Port Authority of NY & NJ and PATH in various roles encompassing operating and capital budgeting,  financial reporting, and grants management, along with two years as a rotational leadership fellow serving in multiple departments across the agency. Mr. Brea has experience in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, which has shaped his unique policy perspectives. His prior experiences include the Congressional Budget Office, KeySpan Energy (now National Grid), Congressman José E. Serrano’s Washington D.C. office, and Groundwork, Inc. He received a Master of Public Administration from the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs (CIPA), focusing on government, politics, and policy studies, and a Bachelor of Arts in international relations and economics from Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

Q&A 

What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?  
The YPT-NYC Holiday Party is always a fun occasion and I enjoy catching up with friends in the transportation sector.

If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be?
I would consolidate all the regional transportation entities, such as the MTA, NJ Transit, PANYNJ, and NYCDOT, and their respective services and revenue streams under one regional entity. I’d grant the new entity the independence and authority for all regional planning, transit service decisions, and capital project construction. Imagine using just one fare media on any of these systems: more efficient and smoother service integration amongst all the various modes and routes.

What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  
We are currently finalizing the construction and delivery of three new ferry boats for the Staten Island Ferry. The new storm-resilient vessels will be more capable of operating in a wide range of weather conditions and locations and can also be used in emergency evacuations. My team at NYCDOT manages the federal funding, reporting, and compliance for the project.

What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?
If you see an opportunity that piques your interest, actively find out more information about it and network with your colleagues at work, school, or YPT. 

What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement?
Definitely Dwayne ‘the Rock’ Johnson.
 

YPT-NYC LINKEDIN

Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork!
Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!
 
WE CAN’T DO IT WITHOUT YOU!

Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an official 501(c)(6) non-profit organization that provides benefits to its members through professional development, fellowship, and networking. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks. Check your membership status here, or join here. Being an active member is $20 for the year and allows us to provide our membership with impactful programming.

Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Dubary Brea

Dubary Brea, New York City Department of Transportation

Dubary Brea is currently the Deputy Director of Federal Transit Administration Grant programs at the NYC Department of Transportation, where over the past four years he has managed a team that oversees the financial and programmatic management of over $500M in federal and state funding for infrastructure projects across NYC. Previously, Dubary spent five years at the Port Authority of NY & NJ and PATH in various roles encompassing operating and capital budgeting and financial reporting, grants management along with two years as a rotational leadership fellow serving in multiple departments across the agency.

Mr. Brea’s varied professional background includes experiences in the public, private, and non-profit sectors, which have shaped his unique policy perspectives. Prior experiences include working at the Congressional Budget Office, KeySpan Energy (now National Grid), Congressman José E. Serrano’s Washington D.C. office, and Groundwork, Inc. He received a Master of Public Administration from the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs (CIPA) at Cornell University, focusing on government, politics and policy studies, and a Bachelor of Arts in international relations and economics from Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

1. What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why? 

The YPT-NYC Holiday Party is always a fun joyous occasion. I enjoy getting together for the end of celebration and catching up with friends in the transportation sector.

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be?

I would consolidate all the regional transportation entities such as the MTA, NJ Transit, PANYNJ, and NYCDOT and their respective services, revenue streams under one regional entity. Grant it the independence and authority for all the regional planning, transit service decisions and capital project construction. Imagine using just one fare media on any of these systems, more efficient and smoother service integration amongst all the various modes.

3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry? 

As a lifelong New Yorker and subway rider, I feel that our local transportation services are generally underappreciated. We love to point out what’s wrong but often overlook the marvel that allows all these services to run every day. I wanted to contribute and learn more about the industry since it is a very important part of our daily lives.

4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by? 

We are currently finalizing the construction and delivery of three new ferryboats for the Staten Island Ferry. The new storm-resilient vessels will be more capable of operating in a wide range of weather conditions and locations – and can also be used in emergency evacuations. My team at NYCDOT manages the federal funding, reporting and compliance for the project.

5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

If you see an opportunity that piques your interest, actively find out more information about it, network with your colleagues at work, school, or YPT. The information you can glean from your contacts will help you make a better-informed decision.

6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement?

Definitely Dwayne Johnson, especially if he voices it using his old “The Rock” wrestling moniker. I feel that many people would be surprised and happy that he would do it, and the announcement when it comes on would get many people’s attention.

Categories
newsletter

April 2021

SPRING IS HERE! 

We’re wishing everyone in the YPT-NYC community sunnier walks, more comfortable bike rides, less bundled-up public transit trips, open-air ferry rides, and more enjoyable mobility in the days ahead. Join us on Earth Day, April 22, by sharing a transportation-related photo showing how you celebrate with #YPTNYCEarthDay2021. Show some love to Mother Earth and share with our community how transportation can be earth-friendly and fun! 

Maravilla, Guadalupe, Planeta Abuelx. Sculpture. 2021. Socrates Sculpture Park. 
https://socratessculpturepark.org/exhibition/planeta-abuelx/ 

This month we feature an exhibit called ‘Planeta Abuelx’ by Guadalupe Maravilla, commissioned by Socrates Sculpture Park, and opening on May 15. The website explains that the title, which in English means Grandparents Planet, expands on the idea of “Mother Earth” as intergenerational, non-binary, and inclusive. The installation is an homage to our elders’ ancestral knowledge of the curative properties of nature, passed down through generations, to encourage communal healing.

YPT-NYC APRIL EVENTS

Game Night 
Thursday, April 15 at 6:30 p.m.

Click here to register.

You asked, and we answered! YPT-NYC is very excited to introduce our first virtual game night. We will be using the platform backyard.co to enjoy a variety of popular games. We hope you can join us on Thursday, April 15 at 6:30 p.m. 

RSVP will close on April 15 at 5:00 p.m., and an event link will be sent to attendees shortly thereafter.
 
 
YPT-NYC UPCOMING EVENTS

Congestion Pricing, a Conversation with Sam Schwartz 
Tuesday, May 4, 2021 at 6:30 p.m.

Click here to register. 

Join YPT-NYC for a conversation with Sam Schwartz, a.k.a. “Gridlock Sam,” on New York City’s congestion pricing plan. Mr. Schwartz, former New York City traffic commissioner and CEO of Sam Schwartz Consulting, has been an advocate for congestion pricing for over a decade. Mr. Schwartz has kept the topic front and center in public discourse, creating his own congestion pricing plan proposal and forming a broad coalition of supporters through the Move NY campaign. Mr. Schwartz recently served on the New York State’s congestion pricing task force and helped to formulate the current plan. Mr. Schwartz will share the latest updates on congestion pricing and its role in New York City’s COVID recovery.

RSVP will close on May 4 at 5:00 p.m., and an event link will be sent to attendees shortly thereafter.
 
Virtual Speed Networking 
Wednesday, May 19 at 6:00 p.m.
Registration link will be in May Newsletter.

Stay tuned for our Virtual Speed Networking event on May 19, 2021. This event will take place on Zoom at 6:00 p.m. Similar to speed dating, recent graduates and early-career transportation professionals will be paired with experienced transportation professionals in breakout rooms in ten-minute intervals. This is a great networking experience for all and we hope you’ll participate! 

Our May newsletter will contain the registration link for this event, and all who register will receive the event link approximately two weeks before the event. 
 

RECENT YPT-NYC EVENTS

Author Talk 
YPT-NYC’s Author Talk featuring Kyle Kirschling, Senior Director at NYCT, was a success! Kyle discussed his paper “An Economic Analysis of Rapid Transit in New York, 1870-2010” and guided YPT’ers through the origins of the New York City Subway system. Kyle discussed the reasoning behind the subway’s original operations, including challenges with city density, geography, mainline track configuration, and local versus express service. The event concluded with a productive Q&A session. Participants left with a deeper appreciation of the subway system both past and present.

YPT-NYC MEMBER PROFILE 

Ben Rosen-Filardo (they/them), Transportation Engineer at Sam Schwartz Engineering

Ben is a transportation engineer with a passion for improving transportation systems through data-driven analysis. They graduated from MIT in 2018 with a degree in Civil & Environmental Engineering. Ben has worked at Sam Schwartz Engineering since 2015, when they started as an intern. While not at work, they knit & crochet, rock climb, and volunteer as an operator at Trans Lifeline.

Q&A

What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?
The tours! My favorite so far has been BookOps. 📚

What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry?  
I was one of those kids who was obsessed with infrastructure and transportation from an early age. I loved my BRIO train set and could happily pass the time on a long drive with a game of Auto Bingo. In middle school, I was gifted Kate Ascher’s The Works. The whole book is incredible, but I found myself reading the transportation section over and over. It sounds kind of silly, but from then on, I knew I wanted to be a transportation engineer.

What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  
Right now, Sam Schwartz Engineering is gearing up to help a city transform a downtown thoroughfare to prioritize transit riders, cyclists, and pedestrians. I’m excited to support this effort by giving stakeholders access to real-time traffic data to evaluate the impact of the project.

What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?
Find opportunities to learn on the job! In my current position, I’ve been able to grow my coding and data analytics skills immensely. I now can work with transportation data on a scale that was previously quite intimidating. I’ve accessed these opportunities by being as forthcoming as possible with my supervisors about what excites me and finding mentors in the company who are supportive of my continued growth.
 

YPT-NYC LINKEDIN

Use the YPT LinkedIn group if you are #OpenToWork!
Our LinkedIn group is a great way for members to share information about yourself as a job seeker, connect with others, or share job opportunities!
 
WE CAN’T DO IT WITHOUT YOU!

Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is an official 501(c)(6) non-profit organization that provides benefits to its members through professional development, fellowship, and networking. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks. Check your membership status here, or join here. Being an active member is $20 for the year and allows us to provide our membership with impactful programming.

Young Professionals in Transportation – New York City (YPT-NYC) is the local chapter of Young Professionals in Transportation International, a nonprofit coalition of organizations, which helps professional development, fellowship, and networking for young professionals in the transportation field. YPT-NYC’s members keep the Greater New York City region moving while providing a space for growing skills, sharing knowledge, and expanding professional networks.

Categories
Member Profiles

Member Profile: Ben Rosen-Filardo

Ben Rosen-Filardo (they/them), Transportation Engineer, Sam Schwartz

Ben is an engineer with an interest in using data to improve transportation systems. They graduated from MIT in 2018 with a degree in Civil & Environmental Engineering. Ben has been at Sam Schwartz since starting as an intern in 2015. While not at work, they knit & crochet, rock climb, and volunteer as an operator at Trans Lifeline.

1. What is your favorite YPT-NYC event and why?

The tours! My favorite so far has been BookOps 📚

2. If you could snap your fingers and make one change to regional transportation, what would it be?

I was thinking of saying a true regional rail system, but Robert Joseph picked that one just a couple months ago 😛 At this point, I’d really like to see the subway return to 24-hour service.

3. What sparked your passion to work in the transportation industry?  

I was one of those kids who was obsessed with infrastructure and transportation from an early age. I loved my BRIO train set and could happily pass the time on a long drive with a game of Auto Bingo. In middle school, I was gifted Kate Ascher’s The Works. The whole book is incredible, but I found myself reading the transportation section over and over. It sounds kind of silly, but from then on, I knew I wanted to be a transportation engineer.

4. What are you working on that you’re most excited by?  

Right now, Sam Schwartz is gearing up to help a city transform a downtown thoroughfare to prioritize transit riders, cyclists, and pedestrians. I’m excited to support this effort by giving stakeholders access to real-time traffic data to evaluate the impact of the project.

5. What career advice would you give to other YPT’ers interested in your career path?

Find opportunities to learn on the job! In my current position, I’ve been able to grow my coding and data analytics skills immensely. I now can work with transportation data on a scale that was previously quite intimidating. I’ve accessed these opportunities by being as forthcoming as possible with my supervisors about what excites me, and by finding mentors in the company who are supportive of my continued growth.

6. What famous celebrity do you think should be given the opportunity to voice a NYCT Subway Announcement?

Bernie Sanders 🧤

Categories
newsletter

JOIN US AT THE (virtual) BAR! 

JOIN US AT THE (virtual) BAR! 

YPT-NYC HAPPY HOUR
This Thursday, March 25th
6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

This event will be held on Gather Town, a virtual space where you can move around to different rooms like you’re inside a video game, pick an avatar, and join different conversations. Stop by and reunite with old friends in our community and meet some new folks!

No downloads needed, just join from your web browser. You can check out Gather Town tutorials if you’d like, but it’s pretty easy to figure out.

Please RSVP here and we’ll send out the event link to those who RSVP’d on Thursday (to avoid event-bombers). Once you receive the event link, click and join with your full name as well as another identifier like your employer or interest (example: Andy Byford, Train Daddy).

FYI 

  • Stay tuned for our April Newsletter next week!
  • And finally, if the sunny weather is calling you outdoors to walk or bike, don’t miss the public art exhibit MONUMENTS NOW at Socrates Sculpture Park ending on March, 30th, which addresses the role of monuments in society and commemorate underrepresented narratives such as diasporic, indigenous, and queer histories.