FBW adds 4 expanding Board of Directors to 14

By Donna Ramer | FBW | August 8, 2016

The Fund for a Better Waterfront (FBW) expanded its Board of Trustees with four new members as the organization continues its work to elevate the quality of life for people who live, work and visit Hoboken. Joining the board are Hoboken residents Gary E. Hindes, Joe Mindak and Kathryn P. Valenta as well as NYC resident Donna K. Ramer, who were officially welcomed to the at the July 21st board meeting. Both Ramer and Valenta have been FBW volunteers for more than two years each.

According to James Vance, president of FBW, the organization has made significant strides over the last 25 years. FBW is officially expanding its mission to “continually focus on advocating for sound urban planning, design and public policy issues beyond the waterfront,” he said, noting that the experience of the new board members complements the strengths of the existing board.

Hindes, Mindak, Ramer and Valenta join FBW’s 10 other current board members, who are:

• James Vance, CEO, Vance & Engles Aircraft Brokers, Inc. and FBW President
• Carrow Thibault, Architect, C Thibault Architect and FBW Secretary
• Monica Pollock, Staff Accountant, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts & FBW Treasurer
• Nicholas Borg, President, Pelham Partners, LLC and FBW Vice Chair
• Heather Gibbons, Video Producer, Paddy Films
• Ines Garcia Keim, Customer Service, United Airlines
• Aaron Lewit, Consultant to nonprofit low-income housing programs and FBW Vice Chair
• Augusta Przygoda, Emeritus Board Member
• Christopher Welsh, Architect, Christopher Welsh Architects
• David White, Attorney, Pashman Stein

About the New Board Members
Gary E. Hindes, who has lived in Hoboken since 2013, is founder, Chairman and Managing Member of The Delaware Bay Company, LLC, an institutional brokerage firm. Prior to founding the Delaware Bay Company, Hindes was an award-winning journalist and is believed to have been the youngest newspaper publisher in the United States, having begun his career at age 19 when he founded The Evening Standard Group. He also served as press secretary to the county executive of New Castle County Delaware (1976-1978) and then Assistant to the Speaker of the House during the 119th Delaware General Assembly before moving to the financial sector. Active in the community, Hindes serves on the investment management committee of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; was chairman of the board of trustees of Wilmington Head Start (1982-2007); served by presidential appointment on the John F. Kennedy Center Advisory Council on the Arts (1993-2001); and is a former a member of the boards of directors of the Wilmington Housing Authority and the Delaware Theater Company. He currently is a member of the Economic Club of New York, the Turnaround Management Association and a life member of the Sons of the American Revolution and the NAACP.

Joe Mindak, a 20-year resident of Hoboken, is immediate past president of the Hoboken Rotary Club (2014-2016) and its Rotarian of the Year (2011). Mindak has an eclectic background that includes launching Hoboken’s popular hMAG (2009) during an economic recession; founding Tisha Creative (1994) as a creative solutions agency to successfully link new products and brands with consumers via social media optimization; launching the Lackawanna Music Festival in 2010 with 1,000 attendees and five bands; and launching Castle Rock Brewery (2013) with its first brew – Hoboken Ale – in 2015. He currently is a board member of the Hoboken Chamber of Commerce (2011-present) and is a former board member of Rebuild Hoboken and the United Way of Essex and West Hudson County (2008-2010).

A connected waterfront park along Hoboken's shoreline provides linear open space, open to all, undeniably public. Adjoining Hudson River municipalities have diminished the public accessibility of their waterfronts by failing to clearly delineate the public from the private.

A connected waterfront park along Hoboken’s shoreline provides linear open space, open to all, undeniably public. Adjoining Hudson River municipalities have diminished the public accessibility of their waterfronts by failing to clearly delineate the public from the private.

Donna K. Ramer, a native New Yorker who has been an FBW volunteer or more than two years, is an award-winning communications specialist with 30+ years creating strategic communications and issues/crisis management plans as well as providing communications training across all industries, most notably the non-profit and healthcare sectors. She is a former reporter, magazine editor and radio producer who honed her public relations skills at some of the world’s largest (and boutique) public relations agencies, before founding StrategCations, Inc., in 2003. An industry mentor, Ramer chairs the Content Committee of the annual leadership conference of the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association, after several terms as a member of the board of directors. She also is a member of the Public Relations Society of America and The Auxiliary of Lenox Hill Hospital.

Kathryn (Kate) P. Valenta, who is originally from northern New Jersey, has been a Hoboken resident since 2002 and an FBW volunteer since 2015. Valenta has more than 15 years’ experience in non-profit arts management with an extensive background in fundraising, planned giving and event coordination. Most recently, Valenta served as Associate Director of Development for the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and also worked with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra before earning a master’s degree from NYU with a focus on arts policy and cultural sociology as they relate to American orchestral institutions. Prior to moving back to the East Coast in 2001, Valenta served as Director of Development for a prominent festival orchestra in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where she also curated and hosted a weekly classical music program on KMTN Radio (96.9 FM). She earned her undergraduate degree in economics and music from the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.

About the Fund for a Better Waterfront Founded in Hoboken in 1990, Fund for a Better Waterfront is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization that, through advocacy and organizing, promotes the concept of a continuous public park along the Hudson River and future development that meets the highest standards of urban design. FBW plays an active role protecting the public’s interest in issues related to municipal planning, flood mitigation, landscape design and government accountability in the greater Hoboken community.

For more information contact:
Donna K. Ramer, President, StrategCations, Inc.
Phone: +1.212.777.5095 Mobile: +1.917.744.2669
Email: dramer@strategcatons.com

Related links

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FBW waterfront plan featured in Designing NJ
Plan for the Hoboken Waterfont