After 11 years as director of the Lenox Hill Settlement House on the Upper East Side, Nancy Wackstein will soon leave to take the helm of United Neighborhood Houses, parent organization to the city's 36 settlement houses. She will take the place of Emily Menlo Marks, who announced in May that she would be retiring after 14 years on the job.
Before her days at Lenox Hill, Wackstein served as an advisor to David Dinkins both as director of the Mayor's Office on Homelessness and SRO Housing and, before that, as his senior policy advisor for Human Services and staff director of the Task Force on Housing for Homeless Families and Children in the Manhattan Borough President's Office. In the 1980s, she lobbied for change to the city's homeless policies while at the Citizens Committee for Children.
After more than a decade of “minding the store” at Lenox Hill, she said she looks forward to getting in a room with elected officials and policy makers to advocate for changes in the housing, immigration and other policies that affect the city's poorest residents.
She will take her new post on September 30. Lenox Hill is just beginning its search for a new director….
Another big change in the city's policy scene: Glenn Pasanen has stepped down as associate director of City Project, the 19-year-old city budget watchdog. Pasanen has analyzed each year's city budget and spending there, for nine years, and put together the popular Alterbudget Breakfasts, the annual response to the mayor's budget.
Pasanen said he decided to leave for personal reasons, and plans to continue writing a finance column for the Gotham Gazette and teaching political science at Lehman College. Bonnie Brower, the group's executive director, attributed his departure to a difference of opinion on the future of the organization. Brower, who took over as director last winter, said she would like to take City Project in “a more activist and advocacy direction.” She said she hopes to hire someone with an economics background soon….
In other changeovers, Dave Cutler recently took over as the head of the New York City Environmental Justice Alliance. Before that he spent several years at the Community Food Resource Center…. After less than a year at the helm of New Yorkers for Parks (formerly the Parks Council), Dick Dadey has left the open space advocacy group. The organization's advocacy director Christian DiPalermo has stepped in as acting executive director…. And Mark Jahr, former vice president at the Local Initiatives Support Corporation, has become the director of real estate lending for Citibank NA's Center for Community Development Enterprise.