Community Conversations on Smoke-Free NYCHA
By Marvin Jean-Jacques, Program Manager, NYCHA Health Initiatives

If you haven’t already heard, all public housing across the country—including NYCHA homes—will go smoke-free as of July 30, 2018, following a requirement from the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development. Smoke-Free NYCHA is designed to create healthier homes for residents and healthier working environments for employees by reducing exposure to secondhand smoke. The program… MORE

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Spotlight on IT Department Employee Nina Winer
By Jeffery Benson, Chief IT Auditor

As a member of NYCHA’s IT Project Management Office, Nina Winer knows that information security is the responsibility of every single NYCHA employee. She strives to show employees how, through careful and intelligent use of technology, we can help safeguard NYCHA’s systems and data while fulfilling our mission of providing safe, clean, and connected housing… MORE

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Customer Service Week Shines a Light on NYCHA’s Core Values
By George Jones, Housing Assistant, East 28th St.

In light of Customer Service Week, the Employee Engagement Committee’s (EEC) October meeting focused on the service we offer to residents and other stakeholders. EEC members discussed instances where good customer service reinforced our core values as well as some cases where poor customer service detracted from them. We examined how we can continue improving… MORE

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Building Bonds of Trust
Reflections on Customer Service Week

James Scanlon, Vice President, Capital Projects/Planning and Design: On October 19, several staff members from the Capital Planning Group in Capital Projects accompanied me on a site visit to Rutgers Houses to spend time with frontline staff and to acknowledge Customer Service Week. We were greeted professionally and enthusiastically by the management office staff, including… MORE

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Seeking Success through Collaboration and Accountability
By Ava-Gay Blagrove, City Planner, Capital Planning

On September 13, Employee Engagement Committee (EEC) members met to discuss how we personify NYCHA’s core values in our daily work lives. One group’s conversation centered on what it means to be “a collaborative workforce, accountable to ourselves and to our residents.” It was fitting that during this discussion we were joined by the leadership… MORE

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A NYCHA Author’s Dream Comes True
By Valerie Pepe, Analyst, Capital Projects’ Sustainability Programs

On October 9, 2017, I had the privilege and once-in-a lifetime opportunity to be honored at the 73rd Columbus Day Parade – the largest celebration of Italian-American heritage and culture in the United States – for my memoir, “Deformed: My Remarkable Life.” The parade’s Grand Marshal, Leonard Riggio, Founder and Chairman of Barnes & Noble,… MORE

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Preserving and Protecting a Positive Work Culture
By Shavelle Knox, Caretaker, La Guardia Houses

How is long-term preservation of a culture achieved? What if the people within a culture did not know its history and did not share its overall goals and values? One of the objectives of the Employee Engagement Committee (EEC) is to help promote NYCHA’s amazing organizational culture by sharing its history and core values with… MORE

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Preserving, and Making, History
By Claudia Tejeda, Asbestos Hazard Investigator, Technical Services Dept.

On July 21, the Employee Engagement Committee (EEC) held its monthly meeting at First Houses in Manhattan, the first public housing development in the United States. Designated a New York City and National Historic Landmark, First Houses is located on East 3rd Street. Its warm burgundy brick façade and plum-colored colonial windows welcome residents and… MORE

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Talking Respect, Efficiency, and Sustainability at the EEC
By George Jones, Housing Assistant

How important are respect, efficiency, and sustainability to you in your everyday life? It’s safe to assume that your answer lies somewhere between “very important” and “absolutely vital.” Now consider that the people we serve and serve with would say the same. That’s why these values comprise NYCHA’s first two core values (see below), and… MORE

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Say Hello to the Employee Engagement Committee
by Ava-Gay Blagrove, City Planner, Capital Planning

Employee engagement is not measured by how happy or satisfied you are with your job. It is the emotional and functional commitment employees make to their employer and its goals. Ask yourself these questions: Do I have a clear understanding of how NYCHA fulfills its mission and how my work contributes to its success? Do… MORE

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Employee Voices: NGO – A New Model for Managing NYCHA Developments
by Barbara Turkewitz, Director of NGO Policy & Program Development and Senior Advisor

NextGen Operations (NGO) is a new model for managing NYCHA’s developments. Launched in January 2015 at 18 developments as the Optimal Property Management Operating Model (OPMOM), the program aimed to empower property managers to truly manage their developments. Senior Vice President (SVP) Janet Abrahams joined NYCHA in September 2015 to run this program, bringing with… MORE

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NYCHA’s Urban Fellow Looks Back At Her Experience
by Malikah Williams, Urban Fellow

Amidst the chaos of my final semester of college—trying to do well in my classes, creating new memories with my friends, and enjoying my last few months before I had more responsibilities—my successful application to become an urban fellow was welcomed stability. New York City was my next stop and I was ready to experience… MORE

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Employee Voices: One-Stop Kiosks Put the Customer in Control
by Alexandra Henry, Project Manager, and Jenny Roman, Compliance Analyst, Management Services Department

NYCHA’s residents, Section 8 tenants and other customers now have more access to information and self-service features thanks to approximately 150 one-stop kiosks installed in property management offices (and soon to be installed in customer walk-in centers in Brooklyn and the Bronx). The kiosks increase access to NYCHA’s ever-growing list of online services by allowing residents to interact with… MORE

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Employee Voices: Transforming Business Operations

by Chloe Gutelle, Senior Administrator Last year, NYCHA residents made over 2.8 million requests for repairs. Over half of open repair requests are for skilled trades. In some cases, residents wait months for even one trade to service their apartment. The wait to complete a repair increases when two or three skilled trades must be sequenced to complete the… MORE

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Employee Voices: Connecting Residents to Community Resources
by Sybille Louis, Director for Performance Tracking & Analytics

NextGeneration NYCHA mandates the use of data to support decision making and help NYCHA become a more transparent organization. The Performance Tracking and Analytics Department (PTAD) has taken a critical role in supporting the Next Generation NYCHA goal of operating as an efficient and effective landlord. Our mission is to provide performance management and business… MORE

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Telling Your Leadership Story
by Jackie Primeau, Chief of Staff

NYCHA Now continues its “employee voices” series with articles by employees about initiatives and events that they know best. To submit an article about a topic you care about, please contact NYCHANow. We want to hear from you! What did Apple’s Steve Jobs and my 91-year-old grandfather have in common? They were both excellent storytellers.… MORE

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CEP Reorganization Provides Better Direct Service to Residents
by Alicka Ampry-Samuel, Senior Advisor to the EVP for Community Engagement and Partnerships

The Community Engagement and Partnerships Division (CEP), formerly known as Community Programs and Development, engages and connects NYCHA residents to critical services provided by the City and to programs and resources in their communities. Serving as a bridge for resident and community transformation, CEP is grounded in NextGen NYCHA strategies and will continue to ensure… MORE

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Customer Service Week Takes Senior Staff to the Frontlines
by Malikah Williams, Urban Fellow

On October 27, during Customer Service Week, 18 senior administrators took employee appreciation to another level. Early that morning, they arrived to shadow employees at 12 developments to see the details of their everyday responsibilities and even help them to complete daily tasks. The visits allowed employees who interact with residents to relay resident issues… MORE

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Connecting Residents to Community Resources
by Alicka Ampry-Samuel, Senior Advisor to the EVP for Community Engagement & Partnerships

As a recent addition to the New York City Housing Authority team, I am grateful to work within the Community Engagement and Partnerships (CEP) Division. Under NextGeneration NYCHA, we are all working hard to make sure that residents and the developments are safe, clean and connected. And I was pleasantly surprised to see my previous… MORE

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New Online Re-certification Provides 24/7 Information Access
by Darnes Taveras, Senior IT Program/Project Manager

NYCHANow continues its “employee voices” series featuring articles by employees about initiatives and events that they know best. To submit an article about a project in your department, please contact NYCHANow. We want to hear from you! On September 1, 2016, 14,000 NYCHA residents in 54 developments who were up for re-certification were invited to… MORE

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IT Service Desk Offers Do-It-Yourself Options
by Debbie Pitts, Special Assistant to the Vice President, Office of the Chief Information Officer

Want more independence at work? The next time your computer breaks down or your printer misbehaves, create your own NYCHA Service Desk ticket! No hanging on the line or spending time composing emails. With the self-service feature of the new Service Desk, you are empowered with the option to create your own ticket to report… MORE

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Preserving NYCHA’s Artistic Heritage
by Aaron Schraeter, Community Coordinator, Resident Engagement Department

Millions of people visit New York every year to view great works of art in our City’s world-class museums, yet there are scores of works by great artists throughout the five boroughs on view for free at NYCHA developments. These masters include Heinz Warneke (Harlem River Houses), best known for his iconic sculpture of the… MORE

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Public Interest Design: Why Should Designers Work Inside Government?
by Jae Shin, Enterprise Rose Architectural Fellow at NYCHA

Studying architecture for three years and practicing for four did not make me particularly interested in mold prevention or roof flashing for 80-year-old brick buildings. However, these aspects of building science are now priorities in my work as an Enterprise Rose Architectural Fellow within the largest owneroperator of public housing in the nation, the New… MORE

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Handheld Devices Improve Customer Service
by Aaron Trauring, Project Manager, Enterprise Technology Portfolio Management Department

NYCHANow continues its “employee voices” series featuring articles by employees about initiatives and events that they know best. This issue includes an article about handheld devices by Project Manager Aaron Trauring, and enhanced information on NYCHA’s websites by Director for Performance Tracking and Analytics Sybille Louis on page 6. To submit an article about a… MORE

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More Information Now Featured on NYCHA’s Websites
by Sybille Louis, Director for Performance Tracking and Analytics

To become a more efficient and effective organization, we have to change the way we do business everywhere, from our developments to our warehouses to our administrative offices. To that end the Performance Management and Analytics Division (PMA), formerly known as the Research and Management Division, under the leadership of Vice President Anne-Marie Flatley, is… MORE

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