March 27, 2012
Bellone Nominates Private Sector Professional Joanne Minieri to Lead Economic Development
By: Vanessa B. Streeter
Bellone Nominates Private Sector Professional Joanne Minieri to
Lead Economic Development
(Hauppauge, NY-March 27, 2012) Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today nominated Joanne Minieri to serve as his Deputy County Executive for Economic Development and Commissioner of Economic Development and Planning. This is the first public sector position for Minieri who worked from 1995-2011 for Forest City Ratner, one of the largest developers in the New York metropolitan area, serving as President and Chief Operating Officer from 2007-2011.
"Joanne Minieri has private sector experience and understands how to build consensus with local communities to advance good projects and create jobs," County Executive Bellone said. "This sends a clear message thatSuffolkCountyis open for business."
"After meeting with County Executive Bellone and his staff, joining his team was an easy decision for me," Minieri said. "I am impressed by his commitment to economic development and excited to implement his vision to makeSuffolkCountya regional economic powerhouse."
At Forest City Ratner, Minieri was involved in the company's acquisition of the New Jersey Nets and oversaw the development of the Atlantic Yards project, an 8 million square-foot mixed-use development which includes a new state-of-the-art sports and entertainment venue, theBarclaysCenter. Minieri also oversaw the company''s retail and commercial development that included the Renzo Piano building, New York Times building, Frank Gehry''s8 Spruce Streetand the 1.3 million square footRidgeHillVillage.
"This is a great signal to Long Island''s business community that County Executive Bellone is committed to improving our community''s business climate," Long Island Association President and CEO Kevin Law said. "It speaks volumes that such an accomplished job creating professional wanted to join his administration."
"This is a home run forSuffolkCounty," Deputy Presiding Officer Wayne Horsley, Chairman of the Legislature''s Economic Development and Energy Committee said. "When we supportedCountyExecutive''s Bellone plan to empower economic development, this is exactly the kind of accomplished professional we all hoped we would attract."
"I am extremely impressed by Joanne Minieri''s background and accomplishments and am pleased that County Executive Bellone sought after such a highly accomplished individual to lead Suffolk County''s economic development initiatives," said Legislator Steve Stern, Vice Chair of the Legislature''s Economic Development and Energy Committee.
"I congratulate County Executive Bellone on his new economic development team. TheCountyExecutive's appointments of Joanne Minieri and Vanessa Pugh bring both private and public sector expertise to the table. I look forward to working with them to partner on regional projects that will have a significant impact onLong Island's economy," said Mark Lesko, Brookhaven Supervisor and Chair of the Suffolk County Supervisors'' Association.
"Bringing someone with this skill set to leadSuffolkCounty''s Economic Development Department is a win forSuffolk''s business community and its residents," said Dez Ryan, executive director of Association for a Better Long Island. "Joanne Minieri has a rock-solid reputation for being knowledgeable about public-private partnerships and putting together economic development deals that are good projects and create jobs."
Bellone also announced that he is bringing on Vanessa Pugh to serve as Deputy Commissioner of Economic Development and Planning. Pugh has served as Director of Community Development and Downtown Revitalization for the Town ofBabylonsince 2007. Previously, she served in the Nassau County Office of Economic Development and as Executive Director of Sustainable Long Island. InBabylon, Pugh has overseen the Wyandanch Rising project and she will be in charge of Downtown Revitalization inSuffolkCounty.
"Vanessa and Joanne share my vision that towns are where zoning and planning decisions are made," County Executive Bellone said. "Instead of forcing planning onto communities, we are creating a regional resource to advance good ideas and create jobs."
Working with the Legislature, County Executive Bellone created the Department of Economic Development and Planning without adding a single dime to the county''s payroll. The new department will be responsible for a number of priorities including Innovate Suffolk, One Stop Shopping and Downtown Revitalization. Pugh began work on March 26 and Minieri will begin on April 16 and will be voted for confirmation by the Suffolk County Legislature on April 24.
(Legislator Steve Stern, Legislator Wayne Horsley, Joanne Minieri, Nominee for Deputy County Executive Economic Development, Kevin Law, President and CEO of the Long Island Association, Mark Lesko, Brookhaven Town Supervisor)