May 17, 2021
The Lenin Fierro Vision Zero Fleet Advocacy Award Will Recognize Champions of Fleet Safety and Memorialize a Colleague Lost During the COVID-19 Pandemic
NEW YORK – The New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) and Together for Safer Roads, a coalition of global private sector companies dedicated to preventing road crashes, today announced the creation of the Lenin Fierro Vision Zero Fleet Advocacy Award and its first recipient. Named in honor or the late Lenin Fierro, a former DCAS employee and long-time champion for fleet safety, the award will be presented annually to an individual who has the leadership, positivity, commitment, approachability, and personal dedication to transforming organizations towards the goals of Vision Zero. The inaugural award will be presented at the Global Vision Zero Conference on May 19, 2021 to Nigel Reid, the director of transportation at City Harvest.
“I would like to thank everyone for honoring my husband's legacy,” said Brenda Fierro. “Lenin was always proud of his work with Vision Zero and NYC Fleet. Thank you for keeping his memory and work alive.”
"Lenin Fierro immigrated from Ecuador, served in the Navy and then joined DCAS to help implement Vision Zero from the beginning," said Mayor Bill de Blasio. "He personally trained thousands of City drivers— truly a life-saving gift to New Yorkers."
“Lenin Fierro was a selfless, kind person, a consummate professional, and a dedicated public servant who was committed to fleet safety, the City of New York, and the Vision Zero community,” said David Braunstein, President of Together for Safer Roads. “More importantly, he is missed every day by his family, colleagues, and friends. We felt it was important to establish the Lenin Fierro Fleet Advocacy Award as a way to honor his tremendous legacy.”
“Lenin Fierro was an extraordinary public servant,” said Keith Kerman, NYC Chief Fleet Officer and DCAS Deputy Commissioner for Fleet Management. “A ten-year US Navy veteran, he joined NYC government and immediately became a leader in Mayor de Blasio’s Vision Zero Safety initiative. Lenin pushed safety in public and in private, always challenging us to do better. He was the voice of safety for our fleet operators. This award is a tribute to his legacy, and we thank Together for Safer Roads for their partnership.”
“This award honors Lenin Fierro’s memory, recognizing unsung heroes who hold the enormous responsibility of putting well-trained drivers behind the very safest vehicles,” said Margaret Forgione, New York City Department of Transportation First Deputy Commissioner. “For DOT, the safety of our own fleet and drivers is critical and we have taken great care to integrate Vision Zero into all levels of our agency. Lenin Fierro’s legacy lives on in our continued effort to make our streets and our operations safer.”
“We honor Lenin Fierro and his family today with the naming of this award in his memory. Lenin was an integral member of the New York City Vision Zero Task Force – we always appreciated Lenin’s insights at the yearly Vision Zero strategy meetings particularly regarding additional training for driver and safety systems for large trucks," said Geraldine Sweeney, Chief Strategy Advisor from the Mayor’s Office of Operations." The Vision Zero Task Force is pleased that his dedication and commitment to road safety will be remembered with this award. I also want to congratulate Nigel Reid of City Harvest for being the first honoree.”
Lenin Fierro started his NYC government career in June 2014 and immediately became a major contributor in building and implementing Mayor de Blasio’s Vision Zero initiative. Lenin led NYC efforts to train now 70,000 staff in safe driving, and he taught thousands himself. He worked to build out the first-ever citywide collision management system, analyzed fleet collision data, surveyed City drivers, and helped NYC and U.S. Department of Transportation develop the Safe Fleet Transition Plan. Lenin often represented the City in Spanish news segments on Vision Zero and participated in annual Vision Zero planning sessions. Lenin also was the City fleet’s leader in partnering with the Department of Education to provide paid internships, driver training, and jobs to automotive high school students. Lenin was a loving husband to his wife Brenda and a father to two daughters, Faith and Destiny. Lenin passed away in March 2020 in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The award’s first recipient, Nigel Reid, oversees City Harvest’s fleet and drivers and is responsible for ensuring they can safely and efficiently rescue 30 million pounds of locally sourced food and deliver it to a network of 400 soup kitchens, food pantries, and other emergency food providers across the five boroughs of New York City. He is also responsible for the safety of City Harvest’s drivers and works to ensure they have the tools, equipment, and support they need in order to succeed.
Prior to joining City Harvest, Nigel worked at Brink’s Global Services, UPS, XPO Logistics, and Jet/Walmart, where he was responsible for all outbound operations, as well as sort operations, to ensure all on-time delivery windows were met, while also emphasizing the importance of a proper safety culture.
"Nigel and the entire transportation team at City Harvest are the backbone of the organization," said Jilly Stephens, CEO of City Harvest. "They help rescue and deliver tens of millions of pounds of food every year for to help feed our neighbors across New York City who need help putting meals on the table. With the surge in the number of New Yorkers experiencing food insecurity over the past year because of COVID-19, the work Nigel and the drivers do has never been more important to more of our neighbors."
“Every day, City Harvest’s food rescue trucks are on the streets of New York City rescuing and delivering food for New Yorkers who need help putting meals on their tables,” said Nigel Reid, Director of Transportation at City Harvest. “It is crucial that we are as safe and secure as possible while we operate around this very busy city. I am honored to be the first recipient of the Lenin Fierro Vision Zero Fleet Advocacy Award in his memory and honor.”
“Nigel Reid was a clear choice as the first recipient of this important award,” said David Braunstein, President of Together for Safer Roads. “He has stepped up to meet probably the biggest demand in the history of City Harvest while making major safety improvements in their fleet operations. He's building a culture of continuous improvement by working with their drivers and managers and championing new fleet safety technologies. His commitment to leadership, respect, and learning goes beyond team spirit. It's what drives organizations to strive to make each day a little better than the last for themselves and for the communities they serve. We salute Nigel and his team at City Harvest and honor Lenin’s legacy at the same time.”
The award will be given out at the Global Vision Zero Forum co-hosted by Together for Safer Roads and DCAS to be held virtually on Wednesday, May 19. This forum will include panels regarding Vision Zero best practices, vehicle design and safety systems, advocacy, the role of public-private partnerships in creating a road safety program, and how to create a Vision Zero culture. The keynote speaker will be Meera Joshi, deputy administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in the US Department of Transportation. Meera previously served as general manager of the New York office of Sam Schwartz Transportation Consultants and visiting scholar at NYU’s Rudin Center for Transportation policy. Previously, she served as commissioner of the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC).
The Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) provides effective shared services to support the operations of New York City government. Its commitment to equity, effectiveness, and sustainability guides its work with city agencies on recruiting, hiring, and training employees; providing facilities management for 56 public buildings; acquiring, selling, and leasing city property; purchasing more than $1 billion in supplies and equipment each year; and implementing conservation and safety programs throughout the city's facilities and vehicle fleet. More information about DCAS can be found at nyc.gov/dcas or by following us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and listening to the Inside Citywide podcast.
New York City operates over 30,000 owned and leased vehicles, the largest municipal fleet in the United States. The City of New York maintains fleet units at 37 main repair locations and has over 400 in-house fueling and 1,040 separate electric charging locations. More than 2,000 staff work full-time in fleet repair and garage operations across over 50 fleet operating agencies and offices. In total, nearly $1 billion is spent annually on fleet repair, fueling, and procurement. DCAS is a part of the citywide Vision Zero initiative and serves on the Mayor’s Vision Zero Task Force, Vision Zero Marketing Group, and Fleet Working Group. As part of making streets safer, DCAS has installed over 60,000 safety systems on city vehicles including the largest truck sideguard program in North America and one of the largest singular telematics programs. More information on DCAS and its role in fleet management can be found at nyc.gov/dcas.
About Together for Safer Roads
Together for Safer Roads (TSR) is an innovative coalition that brings together global private sector companies, across industries, to collaborate on improving road safety and reducing deaths and injuries from road traffic crashes globally. TSR’s current members include AB InBev, AIG, AT&T, Republic Services, CalAmp, Ericsson, Geotab, GM, iHeartMedia, Octo Telematics, PepsiCo, UPS, Walmart, Alpha Drive, HAAS Alert, Ouster, and Zendrive. Learn more at www.togetherforsaferroads.org.
About City Harvest
City Harvest is New York City’s largest food rescue organization, helping to feed the more than 1.5 million New Yorkers who are struggling to put meals on their tables. Annually, they rescue over 150 million pounds of food and deliver it, free of charge, to hundreds of food pantries, soup kitchens, and other community partners across the five boroughs. Their programs help food-insecure New Yorkers access nutritious food that fits their needs and strengthens the local food system, building a path to a food-secure future for all New Yorkers.