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Steven Spinola is the longest-serving REBNY President, presiding over the organization’s growth from 4,000 members in 1986 to more than 16,000 members today. He is widely recognized as the most influential and well-informed advocate for the city’s real estate industry and New York’s status as a competitive and business-friendly locale that consistently attracts global investment. Steve recently announced plans to retire at the end of 2015.
Crain’s New York Business has included Mr. Spinola in its list of the 100 Most Influential New Yorkers, describing him as the “authoritative public voice, lobbyist and conscience” of the industry he represents. He has also been regularly named to the top 50 of the New York Observer/Commercial Observer’s Top 100 Most Powerful People in Real Estate.
Under Steve’s leadership, REBNY is playing a crucial role in the development of Mayor de Blasio’s Affordable Housing Plan and reforming the city’s property tax assessment practices.
In 2010, his advocacy helped persuade the federal government to move the 9/11 terrorist trials to a location outside of Lower Manhattan. Steve was also instrumental in winning incentives that helped stimulate widespread residential development and commercial investment in Lower Manhattan both before and after 9/11.
Mr. Spinola is an outspoken proponent for the Midtown East rezoning in Manhattan, and played a key leadership role as an advocate for rezoning of Manhattan’s Hudson Yards and Downtown Brooklyn. A supporter of landmarks and historic preservation, Steve advocates for policies that strike a thoughtful balance between preservation and responsible development. Greater transparency and reform of the landmarks process is currently under real consideration by the city.
Mr. Spinola serves as Secretary on the Board of Directors for The Grand Central Partnership. He has also been appointed by Governor Cuomo to the New York City Regional Council and served as a member of the New York State Real Estate Board, appointed by former Governor Pataki.
Prior to becoming REBNY’s President, Mr. Spinola served as President of the New York City Public Development Corporation (PDC) (now known as EDC), the city’s entity for spurring large-scale commercial and industrial development and rehabilitation programs in New York. Among the projects in which PDC was involved with while Steve was at its helm were the South Street Seaport, the 42nd Street Redevelopment Program, the Morgan Stanley Computer Center in downtown Brooklyn, the College Point Corporate Park in Queens, and Fordham Plaza in the Bronx.
Steve holds a BA degree from the City College of New York with a concentration in political science and government. He attended the Harvard Business School/Kennedy School of Government Summer Program for Senior Managers in Government.