Press Release

March 1, 2017

Park-to-Park Fundraising Luncheon


New York Real Estate Leaders Back Central Park Conservancy Institute for Urban Parks

Ira M. Millstein, Esq. and Jerome L. Greene Foundation Honored with First Forever Green Award

Park to Park Luncheon Millstein Inerney Ratner

Ira Millstein, Christina Inerney, Bruce Ratner

New York, NY — The Central Park Conservancy hosted an award luncheon at the Metropolitan Club on February 28 to share the impact of their Park-to-Park Program with members of New York’s real estate community. The inaugural Forever Green Award was presented to luncheon honorees Ira M. Millstein, Esq. and the Jerome L. Greene Foundation. Notable attendees included Douglas Blonsky, President & CEO, Central Park Conservancy and Central Park Administrator; NYC Regional Director Leslie Wright; NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver, FAICP, and First Deputy Commissioner Liam Kavanagh; Council Member Mark Levine; Thomas L. Kempner, Jr., Chairman of the Board of the Central Park Conservancy; and Suzie Aijala, President of the Women’s Committee of the Central Park Conservancy.

$300,000 was raised in support of the Park-to-Park Program, which was developed by the Central Park Conservancy's Institute for Urban Parks in response to the increased pressure of growing populations on parks throughout New York City’s five boroughs. As urbanization accelerates, so does the need for greater infrastructure and disciplined management of these urban green spaces. Through the Park-to-Park Program, the Conservancy trains urban park professionals by providing advice, direct onsite assistance, seminars, and specialized education opportunities.

“With a million new residents expected in New York City over the coming decades our parks will receive more attention and will need disciplined management,” said Bruce Ratner, Executive Chairman of Forest City Ratner Companies. “The work of the Central Park Conservancy through its Park-to-Park Program is an important step in ensuring that our City’s parks are able to thrive.”

“The Institute for Urban Parks is about making great spaces and places for people to live and play,” commented Event Chairwoman MaryAnne Gilmartin, President & CEO of Forest City Ratner Companies, in taped remarks inviting fellow professionals to support the Conservancy’s work across the five boroughs. “Their expertise, their experience, their urban know-how is so impressive and so important to the life of our city.”

“One of the things that I’ve always loved is being able to share what we do here [in Central Park] with other people in other parks,” said Douglas Blonsky, President & CEO and Central Park Administrator. “We need to get more and more people to understand what good stewardship is so we can make sure that these parks are not just beautiful tomorrow, but they’re beautiful 10, 20, 50, and another 150 years from now.”

Jeff Blau of Related Companies, Thomas L. Kempner, Jr. of Davidson Kempner Capital Management, Pamela Liebman of The Corcoran Group, and Eric Rudin of Rudin Management Co. showed their support for the Conservancy’s Park-to-Park Program by serving as Vice Chairmen of the event.

Ira M. Millstein, Esq., Chairman of the Institute for Urban Parks Advisory Board, and The Jerome L. Greene Foundation were honored with the Forever Green Award to recognize their exemplary contribution to ensuring the future of Central Park and advancing the Central Park Conservancy’s commitment to elevating urban parks locally, nationally, and internationally.

“You poured your heart and soul into this park,” said NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver to event honoree Ira Millstein. “Your vision, leadership, and generosity have helped to make this the best park in the world.”

Douglas Blonsky thanked The Jerome L. Greene Foundation and Chris McInerney for “being there from the beginning and really spreading the Central Park Conservancy’s management practices throughout New York City.”

For more information about the work of the Central Park Conservancy Institute for Urban Parks, visit

For hi-res photos, contact [email protected]