Archives of the Mayor's Press Office

Date: February 7, 1997

Release #073-97

Contact: Colleen Roche (212) 788-2958 or Deirdra L. Picou (212) 788-2971


Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani today appointed Richard T. Roberts Commissioner of the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD). Mr. Roberts returns to the Giuliani Administration after serving most recently as Vice President of Government and Community Relations at the Mount Sinai Medical Center. Lilliam Barrios-Paoli, currently Commissioner of HPD, will assume her new post as Commissioner of the City’s Human Resources Administration on February 18th.

“I am pleased to announce today that Richard Roberts will return to the administration as Commissioner of the Department of Housing Preservation and Development,” said Mayor Giuliani. “He is a proven leader whose solid administrative experience will help guide HPD.”

As Assistant to the Mayor from 1994 to 1995, Mr. Roberts is credited with advancing the successful ANCHOR initiative (Alliance for Neighborhood Commerce, Home Ownership and Revitalization), a program designed to increase home ownership and local commercial development in distressed City neighborhoods.

“I am confident that under his new leadership, HPD will continue to revitalize low-income housing and accelerate the return of the City’s In-Rem housing stock to the private sector. Richard’s past experience with the City’s ANCHOR program will ensure that the designated ANCHOR sites break ground as quickly as possible and that the program expands to other parts of the City. He will also work with private owners to keep distressed properties in private hands. Richard brings experience and skill to this critically important position.”

“I look forward to continuing to serve the public through the implementation of the Mayor’s public-private partnership initiatives in order to provide better housing opportunities for New Yorkers and to address the housing needs of New York City,” said Commissioner Roberts.

HPD promotes quality housing and viable neighborhoods for all New Yorkers by acting as a catalyst for private sector investment and the economic reintegration of communities with the greatest need. The Department maximizes neighborhood ownership and management of City-owned residential buildings by soliciting local participation in its disposition and development programs; encouraging and supporting the preservation and development of affordable housing through loans and other financial assistance; and enforcing compliance with housing quality standards.

Prior to today’s appointment, Commissioner Roberts served as Vice President of Government and Community Relations at The Mount Sinai Medical Center where he directed governmental relations and community outreach efforts for the Hospital. From January 1993 to 1994, he served as Vice President of The Edison Project, a private enterprise which manages public schools. As an associate at the Wall Street firm of Davis Polk & Wardwell from 1989 to 1993, Mr. Roberts represented corporate clients specializing in international business transactions.

Mr. Roberts received a Bachelor of Arts from Yale University. He is also a graduate of Yale Law School, where he received a Juris Doctor degree.

He has served on the Board of Directors of the Practicing Attorneys for Law Students and is a Trustee of the Brooklyn Children’s Museum, the nation’s oldest children’s museum. He also serves on the Board of the School Choice Scholarship Foundation.

He is married to Janice Cook and they reside in Manhattan.

This appointment will be effective later this month.

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