Hope Cohen

Hope Cohen was the deputy director of the Center for Rethinking Development. With over a decade of experience in New York City government at the Department of Parks and Recreation and MTA New York City Transit, she brought invaluable experience navigating the complex city bureaucracy and an acute ability to solve complex problems by building consensus among multiple stake-holders.

Supplementing her professional work as a public servant with voluntary public service as a Board member, Land Use Committee Co-Chairperson, and Board Chairperson of Manhattan’s Community Board 7 (Upper West Side), she represented her neighborhood’s land use and zoning concerns to a variety of city agencies, always working to get the multiple interested parties to a place of consensus and cooperation. She also developed recognized expertise on land use issues, ranging from the inclusionary housing bonus to the use of sidewalk space.

As Chairperson, she reorganized the Board structure, introduced streamlined processes, and recruited ambitious, civic-minded new members to represent the community. A major achievement of her administration was a review of the city’s Solid Waste Management Plan that included acceptance of a role for the West 59th Street Marine Transfer Station, but also highlighted solid waste management as one of several key issues that need to be addressed seriously in the context of the city’s development. She is intensely interested in the development and maintenance of the infrastructure required to make New York City work.

She holds a B.A. from Harvard and an M.A. from the University of Chicago.