Respecting the past, Building the future

OANA May 2021 Meeting

Our next meeting will take place on May 12th at 6:30PM.

The meeting will be streamed live on Facebook , YouTube and our website.


Why West of 21st Street was neglected

How the Govt and Banks conspired to stop investment in Minority Communities


  • Braden Crooks, “Design the We” 

Braden Crooks is a founding partner at Designing the We, a social impact design studio operating in community-driven social and economic development. The dtW team designs programs, policies and enterprises that grow local communities and global networks dealing with deep crises, from the history of Redlining to the future of work.

He is on the board of The New York State Sustainable Business Council, and has served as the president of the board of Sure We Can: a non-profit collective for canners, who are those who make their living by redeeming cans and bottles for five cents. Braden graduated from the innovative program MS Design and Urban Ecologies at Parsons the New School for Design in May 2014 with honors, taught ecological thinking in urban issues at Parsons and produced a live audience webseires about New York. He is an RSA Fellow.

He received his undergraduate education at The Pennsylvania State University for Landscape Architecture. In Pennsylvania, he founded Groundswell PA– A Community and Environmental Rights Initiative, which campaigned for and passed a “Community Environmental Bill of Rights” in the borough of State College, PA, by a popular vote in November of 2011. This was the first instance “rights of nature”​ were passed in the United States by using a popular vote. Groundswell helped pass a second initiative in Ferguson Township, PA, in November of 2012.

Braden lives and gardens in Brooklyn, NY.


  • Stacey Andreadakis, M.Sc

Stacey holds a Master of Science in Real Estate Development (MSRED) from Columbia University; a Master of Science in Applied Mathematics (M.Sc) from the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University; and a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Applied Mathematics from George Washington University. Stacey’s passion for understanding the economic and sociological dynamic between the community and public-private partnerships drives her application of mathematical modeling in answering questions such as how can we better equip our communities with the tools and resources to be their own advocates.


  • Bishop Mitchell Taylor, Senior Pastor COHI Nation and Co-founder & CEO Urban Upbound

Bishop Mitchell G. Taylor Co-Founder & CEO, Urban UpboundSenior Pastor, Center of Hope International Bishop Mitchell G. Taylor has lived in and around Queensbridge Houses for most of his life. In 1991, he was installed as Senior Pastor of the Center of Hope International (COHI), a non-denominational church adjacent to the Queensbridge Houses. For over a decade COHI has provided a safe place for hundreds of children in its after-school program and has fed thousands of families each year through its Bread of Life food pantry.

In 2004, convinced that a single church would not be able to mitigate the mammoth issues facing public housing residents, Bishop Taylor founded Urban Upbound (formerly East River Development Alliance as “ERDA”). In founding Urban Upbound, Bishop Taylor has created a true alliance of local religious leaders, government officials, educators, business owners and residents all working together to affect neighborhood improvement and expand economic opportunity for the 30,000 residents living in Queesnbridge, Ravenswood, Astoria and Woodside public housing developments. Urban Upbound’s key programs include Workforce Development, College Preparation, Financial Education and Counseling and Community Revitalization. In April 2010, Urban Upbound opened the Urban Upbound Federal Credit Union (FCU) – the first new credit union in NYC in 10 years, the first in Queens in 30 years, and the first chartered nationally in the Obama administration.

Bishop Taylor has been profiled by the New York Times, CNN, National Public Radio and other leading media outlets for his leadership around public housing and has received prestigious awards including the New York City Public Library Brook Astor Award, NYC Neighborhood Achievement Leadership Award, and the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York Martin Luther King Award. He was also a participant in the United Way Executive Fellows Program and was chosen to participate in the highly competitive Achieving Excellence in Community development program led by Neighborworks and Harvard University Kennedy School of Government.


** NOTE: You will have the opportunity to ask questions of the presenters via Facebook or Youtube chat.

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If you miss the meeting, you can view all of our meetings on our website.

***All presenters subject to change without notice.

The event is finished.


May 12 2021


6:30 pm - 9:00 pm
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