Randall’s Island Park Alliance Announces President Retirement and Succession Plan

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Vice President and General Counsel Deborah Maher to become President effective July 1, 2020 Aimee Boden to retire after 30 years as President of RIPA

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Aimee Boden and Deborah Maher

“Today’s leadership announcement is the result of a thoughtful succession planning process, knowing that Aimee is certainly a tough act to follow...Deborah is a proven and respected leader who has shown a relentless commitment to our Park and to the RIPA staff"

The Randall’s Island Park Alliance (RIPA) announced today that its Board of Trustees has unanimously elected Deborah Maher, current Vice President and General Counsel, to succeed Aimee Boden as President, effective July 1, 2020. Ms. Boden, who has served as President of RIPA since its founding in 1992, and who has been involved with restoration efforts on Randall’s Island for over 30 years, announced her retirement as President.

“On behalf of our Board of Directors, we would like to thank Aimee for her remarkable leadership as President for the last three decades. Aimee has built a unique culture that stressed accountability and encouraged collaboration. We are forever indebted to her and her efforts to transform Randall’s Island into one of the premier outdoor destinations in the city,” said Board of Trustees Co-Chairs Jon May and Nancy Neff.

“Today’s leadership announcement is the result of a thoughtful succession planning process, knowing that Aimee is certainly a tough act to follow,” continued May and Neff. “Deborah is a proven and respected leader who has shown a relentless commitment to our Park and to the RIPA staff, as well as to the millions of visitors who visit our Park every year.  We have worked with her for years and we are confident that she is the right person to succeed Aimee.”

Ms. Boden began her Parks advocacy and fundraising career upon graduating from college.  She has led innovative park initiatives in senior management positions under six Mayors and seven Park Commissioners, both in the City of Boston and in New York City. During her tenure with RIPA, she facilitated the Park’s complete transformation, securing and managing nearly $400M in capital reconstruction, and has strengthened the public-private partnership between the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation and RIPA.

Mitchell Silver, Commissioner for the New York City Parks Department, commented, “For nearly three decades, Aimee has played a central role in building and sustaining the long and successful public-private partnership between RIPA and NYC Parks. I wish Aimee all the best on her well-deserved retirement and thank her for her unwavering devotion and outstanding public service to the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation and its constituency.

Silver added, “I’ve had the opportunity to work with Deborah over the last several years and I am convinced there is no better person to succeed Aimee as President. Deborah has displayed tremendous energy and passion in her role as Vice President and General Counsel, and I believe her considerable leadership and management skills will enable Randall’s Island to grow and flourish for many years to come.”

Ms. Boden commented, “Having served RIPA as President since 1992, and after working for nearly four decades with non-profits on environmental and consumer protection issues, I feel this is the right time for me to take a step back and for RIPA to make this leadership change. I have had a wonderful, fulfilling career and it has been my honor to work alongside such a talented and incredibly devoted staff. As a team, we have successfully transformed a unique piece of land in NYC for future generations. Seeing that evolve for millions of visitors has been exciting for me every single day.”

Ms. Boden added, “I am leaving RIPA in excellent hands. I feel fortunate to have worked very closely with Deborah for the last 11 years. I have great confidence in her ability to lead and inspire, and to continue to fulfill both the RIPA mission and our tireless efforts to maintain Randall’s Island.”

Deborah Maher is the current Vice President and General Counsel for RIPA, where she oversees public programming and communications as well as the corporate governance and legal affairs. Ms. Maher works closely with the President and Board of Trustees to strategically plan for the future of Randall’s Island Park. As a member of RIPA’s senior management team, she plays a leadership role on board development, donor relations, financial planning, budgeting strategy and management of Island concessions and events.

Prior to joining RIPA in 2009, Deborah was a Senior Associate at Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, an American international law firm with over 1,000 attorneys. Deborah earned a J.D. from New York Law School, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude, and a BA in Journalism from Saint Michael’s College in Vermont.

Ms. Maher said, “I am both humbled and privileged to be the next President of RIPA, and I appreciate the confidence that both Aimee and the Board of Trustees have placed in me. I also want to thank Aimee for her unwavering support and am fortunate to have her as both a mentor and friend. This is a dynamic time for RIPA and we look forward to fully opening the Park post COVID, once again emerging as a welcoming and green place for all New Yorkers to enjoy our many outdoor wonders, while socially distancing and staying safe.”

About the Randall's Island Park Alliance:

The Randall's Island Park Alliance (RIPA), founded in 1992, is a public-private partnership with the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation that seeks to realize the unique potential of 330 waterfront parkland acres anchoring Manhattan, the Bronx, and Queens. RIPA works with the City and local communities to provide an innovative and exciting destination through a wide range of sports venues, cultural events, and environmental exploration. As the dedicated steward of Randall's Island Park, the Alliance sustains, maintains, develops and programs the Park to support the well-being of all New Yorkers. The Park offers miles of waterfront pathways, almost nine acres of wetlands, an urban farm, a track, and field stadium, a golf center, a 20-court tennis center, and over 60 new playing fields, as well as the Harlem River Event Site. For more information, please visit http://www.randallsisland.org.

Media Contact for Randall's Island Park Alliance:

Jennifer Wainwright
Randall’s Island Park Alliance

Melissa Sheer
Kent Place Communications, LLC

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Melissa Sheer