(Editor's Note: this replaces a news release sent earlier today
that had html coding in the headline.)
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Adolfo Carrión Jr., director of the
White House Office of Urban Affairs Policy, a position created by
President Barack Obama last year to focus federal investment in
cities for the first time in several decades, will present the
Graduate Planning Student Association Lecture in the University at
Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning on April 23 at 1 p.m.
in 146 Diefendorf Hall, UB South Campus.
The talk is free and open to the public, and will be followed by
a reception for Carrión.
Carrión is a Democratic politician of Puerto Rican
descent with a master's degree in urban planning from Hunter
College who served two terms as New York City's Bronx Borough
president before being tapped by President Obama to create jobs and
better housing and ensure that federal money for urban America is
Kimberley Moore, president of the GPSA, who helped arrange the
visit, said, "The fact that Carrión has a graduate degree in
planning appealed to us, as does the fact that he worked on a
number of initiatives, including a project that led to the building
of multiple affordable housing units in the Bronx.
"We are also impressed with the fact that Carrión was
selected in 2006 by the Aspen Institute as one of 24 Aspen-Rodel
Fellows in Public Leadership, considered among the very best,
brightest and most promising of America's emerging political
leaders," she said.
Robert Silverman, PhD, associate professor of urban and regional
planning, agrees that Carrión was an excellent choice for
many reasons, including the fact that there is broad community
interest in his work.
Silverman says, "In his current position, Carrión, deals
directly with the very issues that Buffalo faces: poverty, urban
decline, housing, transportation. These are challenges confronted
by many American cities. This initiative is very, very important.
It represents the first effort by the federal government in more
than 30 years to address urban issues in a comprehensive way."
As Bronx president, Carrión had considerable influence
over land-use projects, appointed members of the borough's
community boards, monitored city administrative services and
conducted strategic planning for the economic development of the
When he was appointed to his new position in March 2009, The New
York Times cited his accomplishments in "helping to develop housing
for low- and moderate-income families. Borough presidents decide
how to spend a small pot of money from the city's capital budget,
and Mr. Carrión gave millions of dollars each year to help
finance housing units. In a typical contribution, he gave $3
million to the nonprofit Fordham Bedford Housing Corporation to
build 300 units that cost a total of $82 million."
He has critics whose principle claim is that Carrión's
role in building urban housing has been overstated, and that the
40,000 new units created while he was Bronx president included
projects he did not help finance.
Prior to being elected borough president, Carrión was a
public school teacher and later served one four-year term on the
New York City Council representing the 14th Council District, which
includes the West Bronx neighborhoods of University Heights, Morris
Heights, Kingsbridge and Fordham.
He also served as the president of the National Association of
Latino Elected Officials, and worked as an associate pastor of a
The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public
university, a flagship institution in the State University of New
York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB's
more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests through
more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree
programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of
the Association of American Universities.