NYCHA Chairman John Rhea addresses graduating Winter 2012 Clean Energy Corps

July 27, 2012  |   Posted by :   |   Blog,Projects   |   Comments Off on NYCHA Chairman John Rhea addresses graduating Winter 2012 Clean Energy Corps»

The following remarks were delivered by Chairman of NYCHA John Rhea at Green City Force’s Winter 2012 Graduation Ceremony, hosted by the New York City Housing Authority in Manhattan’s Federal Building on June 29th.

It is truly my distinct pleasure to be here with families, friends, mentors, who are all here to celebrate this significant achievement. Your graduation from Green City Force represents a new beginning for you, your individual NYCHA communities, and quite frankly the city as a whole. Today you’re defining your own success and teaching us all by example that social responsibility, environmental sustainability, and economic self-sufficiency can truly go hand in hand.

John Rhea, Chairman of NYCHA, addresses Winter 2012 graduates and guests. Credit Marina Villela Photography

I want to thank you for your service and your engagement. Throughout your 6 month program, you have assisted us in building awareness and knowledge among our resident population about green issues that include conservation as well as sustainability, two areas that are crucial to the fight to preserve public housing in New York City for future generations. Your work in our communities has also supported NYCHA’s efforts in being at the forefront of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s PlaNYC 2030 campaign to promote a sustainable living environment in our great city. NYCHA’s partnership with Green City Force has ensured not only neighborhood renewal and sustainability, through the creation of the Planters Grove at Lillian Wald houses and the advancement of the NYC °CoolRoofs campaign, but it has also assisted us with our outreach efforts around living more environmentally sound lives; just another great example of the power of partnership.

You have become a powerful source in your own right for good in our communities. And for that I personally thank you, NYCHA as a whole thanks you, and on behalf of Mayor Bloomberg, we all thank you collectively.

Chairman Rhea. Credit Marina Villela Photography

You are in a unique position, and the timing could not be better. You have prepared yourself for immeasurable opportunities and you are climbing the ladder to a promising career in the green economy, an ever increasing work force where the prospects and benefits are many and the career opportunities are diverse. But most importantly, these opportunities can be a platform from which to make a meaningful difference in the quality of peoples’ lives, something you are already quite familiar with.

President Barack Obama recently said to a group of graduates, and I echo these words of wisdom to you today, don’t just get involved, fight for your seat at the table, better yet, fight for a seat at the head of the table. Thank you to the Green City Force, our government and private partners, and the donors and funders for this pioneering program.

I want to thank all of you graduates for your service. I am looking forward to reading about each of you in the weeks and the years to come. You’ve already been an inspiration on the work that you’re doing in the community and we know you will continue to inspire us, not only with the tools that you receive today, but a continued commitment to further your education and knowledge and your service to New York. And I hope that today and as we work forward in the days to come, that you bring a lot of your skills back to bear for the benefit of public housing residents of New York City. Thanks so much.

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