Lorraine Grillo tapped as city’s Recovery Czar


New York’s school construction boss Lorraine Grillo has been tapped as the city’s COVID Recovery Czar.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said that as new Senior Advisor for
Recovery, Grillo will coordinate across City government to supercharge his
recovery agenda.

 “New York City was
hit with an unprecedented health care and economic crisis. Together, we’re
taking unprecedented steps to drive a recovery for all of us,” said Mayor de
Blasio. “As New York City’s first-ever Recovery Czar, Lorraine will cut through
bureaucracy, coordinate across all agencies, and reach out to non-profit and
private partners to make sure our recovery is felt in every borough, every
neighborhood, and every block.”

Grillo will begin a transition from her roles as Commissioner of the Department of Design and Construction and CEO of the New York City School Construction Authority and get to work “immediately.”


“I build things. That’s what I do. And together, we are
going to build a recovery that lifts up every New Yorker,” said Grillo.

“Every job I’ve had serving the people of New York City,
from responding to Hurricane Sandy to expanding universal Pre-K, has required
an intense coordination across different agencies, companies and non-profits.
That’s the same aggressive approach I’m going to take to lead a recovery for
all of us.”

 “We are leading an
economic recovery that involves everything from vaccine distribution to
reopening schools to attracting new jobs,” said Deputy Mayor of Housing and Economic
Development Vicki Been. “With Lorraine serving as our Recovery Czar, this
effort on all fronts will have a dedicated, centralized leader to make sure
we’re leveraging every last bit of effort to bring our city back fairer and
stronger than ever before.”

 In the new position,
Grillo will coordinate across government agencies, non-profits and the private
sector to ensure everyone is working together for New York City’s recovery.

Working with the New York City Taskforce on Racial Inclusion
and Equity, she will build on her work championing minority-and women-owned
businesses (MWBE) and push for economic justice across all recovery efforts.
Grillo will work directly with Mayor de Blasio to lead a recovery war room that
will convene leaders across government for regular progress on recovery

Grillo has served at the School Construction Authority since
1994 and as its president since 2010. Her team was responsible for the
reopening of 71 schools damaged by Hurricane Sandy in record time. In 2015, the
SCA met the administration’s mandate opening 35 Universal PreK centers for the
city’s four-year-old children in less than six months.

“It is excellent news for New York City and working people across the five boroughs that Lorraine Grillo will serve as the city’s Recovery Czar,” said Gary LaBarbera, President of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York. “Lorraine’s honest and meticulous approach to her work, and the determination, drive, and passion she brings to every project or job she’s tasked with is what New York City needs to recover from this economic crisis. We look forward to closely partnering with Lorraine as we work towards lifting our great city out from the many challenges and hardships created by the pandemic.”


“The appointment of Lorraine Grillo as Recovery Czar for New
York City is a critical step toward rebuilding our economy and getting the five
boroughs back on track. Having worked with Lorraine for the past 20 years and
given her tremendous record of success, I can think of no better choice for
this important role – her strength, tenacity and expertise will be invaluable
to the resurgence of our city. The New York Building Congress and its members
are committed to assisting in this recovery and helping get New York City open
and ready for business in the months ahead,” said Carlo A. Scissura, President
and CEO, New York Building Congress.

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