2012: My 7 favorite eventsOffbeat

2012 was a great year. I began my work as a research associate at Hofstra University, wrote many blog posts, attended local events, and coordinated a few successful events. To close off the year on the blog, I wanted to share a post on the top 7 event happenings I attended and I also will write a post on the most popular blog posts of 2012.

Below is a brief recap on my 7 favorite event happenings in 2012.


Peconic Bay Scallop Restoration Project


In June, I attended the tour of the Peconic Bay Scallop Restoration program that is part of Cornell’s Cooperative Extension facility located in Southold, Long Island. Years ago the scallop industry was destroyed by a brown tide, and now the waters on Long Island are clean, but there is a shortage of scallops. The facility is responsible for seeding thousands of scallops in Long Island’s waters and this program is aiding in the restoration of the scallop industry in addition to creating new jobs. The purpose of the tour was to celebrate the program’s funding through New York State’s economic development grant program. There were many great people in attendance; the Long Island Regional Economic Development Council, Empire State Development CEO Ken Adams, Members of the Press, and local residents and officials.




Elevated Ladies Unite Women  Executive Leadership Series



In June, I attended the Women Executive Leadership Series which was organized by the Elevated Ladies Unite founder Lithera Forbes. It was inspiring to connect with like minded women who aspire to build their businesses. It was great to connect with many individuals, who I keep in contact with now. Lithera was warm and we still keep in touch and I also met the editor of the Hempstead Uniondale Times, Elseah Cheah, who I keep in touch with still.


Networking in the Hub

In July, I attended the Networking in the Hub event, which was organized by the Hempstead Uniondale Times (HU Times) editor Elseah W. Cheah. The event took place at the African-American Museum in Hempstead and was an event filled with networking, keynote speakers, honored community leaders, government leaders, music, art, and community engagement. This was a great event celebrating entrepreneurship and community. I can’t wait for the next one.



Michaelle Solages Fundraiser

My father is into politics and since I was in high school, I have been assisted him with fundraising, marketing, and event planning for several notable politicians (Congresswoman Yvette Clarke and Former Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi). I have always been part of the different aspects of the coordination of fundraising events, but October was the first time I coordinated every aspect of a fundraiser event myself. From fundraising to using Constant Contact for email marketing to day of event management, I coordinated a successful fundraiser for Michaelle Solages, who won in the 22nd Assembly District of New York. I would like to think the fundraiser I coordinated helped her become the first Haitian elected to New York State Assembly ;).

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L to R: Michaelle Solages, 22nd Assembly District, Dr. Georges J. Casimir, Carries Solages, 3rd Legislative District



Panel on 2012 U.S. Elections, the Environment, and Sustainability



L to R: Dr. Niedt, Dr. Brinkmann, ME!, Mr. Laborde, and Mr. Jones

L to R: Dr. Niedt, Dr. Brinkmann, ME!, Mr. Laborde, and Mr. Jones

In November, I was invited to moderate a panel discussion on the 2012 U.S. Elections, the environment, and sustainability at Hofstra University.  A few days before the panel, I found out that Van Jones, green jobs advocate and community activist was going to join panelists: Mr. Larborde and Drs. Acampora, Brinkmann, and Niedt. I was nervous because of the accomplishments of the panelists, and I dread public speaking. With practice, when time came, I spoke without a hitch to a standing room only crowd. It was a great experience. It also was great practice for the panel I will be leading in March for the Hofstra University sustainability conference.


Vision Long Island

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In November, I attended the Vision Long Island Smart Growth Summit. The summit took place at the Meville Marriott Hotel and showcased a full days worth of sessions, plenaries  and keynote speakers dedicated to the topic of the redevelopment and improvement of Long Island’s infrastructure. A great event and I learned a lot about Long Island. These type of events inspire me to learn more about Long Island and become more involved with the community.

(L to R) Taiyo Francis, Joanne Norris, Dr. Robert Brinkmann, Dr. Christopher Niedt, Me!, Dan Barbuto

(L to R) Taiyo Francis, Joanne Norris, Dr. Robert Brinkmann, Dr. Christopher Niedt, Me!, Dan Barbuto

Brookings Institution

In December,  I went to Washington, DC to attend a Brookings Institution event on poverty in America. It was my first time really getting to stay in Washington, DC.  The city has a charm to it and everyone has an air about them that screams- politics. The event had many great speakers from White House officials to executives. It was a great discussion on poverty, its causes and how to eradicate it. When I get a chance, I blog in more details about this event.

I attended many events in 2012, but these seven stood out in my mind. In 2013 I will continuing going to these type of events, but I need to get photos of me! I’m barely in any photographs!

What noteworthy events have you attended this year?



An urban planning PhD student finding  peace in creating a balance between the mind, body, soul, & environment.

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