More than 1,000 men and women from the design, construction and real estate community were joined by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to recognize three great New Yorkers — City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn, New York University president John Sexton and Jack Resnick & Sons chairman and CEO Burton P. Resnick, during the New York Building Congress 90th Anniversary Leadership Awards Luncheon at the Hilton New York.
According to AECOM president and CEO John M. Dionisio, who chaired the luncheon, this year’s awardees, coming from the worlds of government, academia and real estate, are similar in that they are pioneers in their respective fields as well as selfless New Yorkers dedicated to the long-term well-being of the City and its inhabitants.
After congratulating the New York Building Congress on its 90th anniversary and vowing that the City will continue to think and build big, Mayor Bloomberg praised Speaker Quinn, saying, “The Speaker has an extremely difficult job and does it exceptionally well, thanks to her common sense, hard work and judgment.”
He mentioned that her contributions have made it possible for his administration to rezone one-sixth of the entire city. “Through it all, Chris displayed time and again and again the qualities that make her one of New York’s most adept and effective leaders.”
Speaker Quinn accepted the award on behalf of all of her colleagues on the City Council, adding, “Our focus is to get things done, keep the City moving, and create jobs. The construction industry, as well as building and development are an incredibly important part of keeping our City moving forward and an incredibly important part of our economic engine. That’s one of the reasons we are fighting as hard as we possibly can to avoid cuts in this year’s capital budget.”
Deputy Mayor Robert K. Steel presented the Leadership Award to NYU president Sexton, who was saluted for his academic and community leadership, his integrity, and his thoughtful stewardship of NYU’s local and international expansion plans.
Deputy Mayor Steel said, “John has spent the majority of his career in the classroom as an educator and academic. It is his deep knowledge and appreciation for his craft that has allowed him to be a visionary academic leader, as well as a true civic leader.”
In addition to saluting his team at NYU, Sexton used part of his acceptance to suggest that NYU is tied together, in certain ways, with the Building Congress and its members. “We are both builders. We are builders of knowledge and you are builders of the physical landscape, infrastructure and communities. Both the Building Congress and NYU are deeply committed to this City.”
Rudin Management vice chairman and president Eric Rudin presented Mr. Resnick with the Jack and Lewis Rudin Award for Service to New York City, noting, “I have the huge privilege to honor a dear friend of the Rudin family and a great New Yorker. He has been a close friend and confidante to my father (Jack Rudin) for many years. We all owe a great deal to Burt Resnick – for bringing people together to make New York City a better place for the rest of us and for our children. He is one of the great class acts of the industry and the City.”
Mr. Resnick said he was deeply honored to be “following in the steps of three great New Yorkers” — Jack Rudin, John Tishman and Howard Rubenstein.
He also praised his own family, saying, “Service to New York has been a way of life for my family for generations. My father Jack recognized that his business prospects and quality of life depended on this City we love, and instilled in us the desire to improve conditions as much as we are able. “
The Building Congress used the occasion of its 90th anniversary to recognize the organization’s longest-standing members, including 65 organizations that have been with the Building Congress for more than 25 years. The Building Congress also paid tribute to a select group of charter members.
Chairman Peter Marchetto said “I am grateful for the opportunity to recognize eleven of our members that have supported this fine organization from our beginning in 1921. Names may have changed over the years, but these organizations continue to serve the New York City building industry in design, construction, and real estate.”
Representatives of those organizations — the Building Trades Employers Association, Cauldwell Wingate, E-J Electric Installation, HLW International, Jaros Baum & Bolles, Otis Elevator, RailWorks Corporation, Skanska USA, STV Group, Tishman Construction and Turner Construction — were invited to join Marchetto at the podium for a special award presentation.
Building Congress president Richard T. Anderson told the audience, “This annual celebration has brought together members of the design, construction and real estate community of New York City since 1921. In this our 90th year, I want to thank all of you for your generous support and active involvement.”
The Underwriters of the luncheon were AECOM, Jack Resnick & Sons, Inc., and Rudin Management. The Executive Co-Chairmen were Jeffrey R. Capazzi of The Jobin Organization; Con Edison; William J. Gilbane, III, of Gilbane Building Company; Robert S. Peckar, Esq., of Peckar & Abramson, P.C.; George J. Pierson of Parsons Brinckerhoff; Lawrence P. Roman of WDF, Inc.; Frank J. Sciame of F.J. Sciame Construction Company; Dominick M. Servedio of STV Group; and Michael Zetlin of Zetlin & De Chiara, LP.