CUP’s core staff supports the organization from day to day, but CUP projects are designed and implemented by teams of artists, designers, educators, activists, and researchers.
CUP and CUP teaching artist Douglas Paulson worked with students from College Now at Brooklyn College on an Urban Investigation about neighborhood financial services. Those students were: Roodlyne Vilsaint, Kimberly Saintelus, Maniza Pritila, Alyssa Lau, Cynthia Dunston, Tommi Ann Davis, Shannae Braham, Alexa Betancourt.close
Fatima was born and raised in NYC and is interested in all things urban. When not working, she likes to explore and relax in different parks around the city. Fatima is completing her bachelors in urban studies at Barnard College and is teaching this fall’s class on disaster planning.close
Maggie Acevedo and Edwin Rodriguez, from City-as-School, were part of the Water Underground crew in 2006.close
Shana Agid is an artist, teacher, writer, and activist whose work focuses on relationships of power and difference, particularly regarding sexuality, race, and gender in visual and political cultures. Agid is an Assistant Professor of Arts, Media, and Communication at Parsons the New School for Design where he teaches book arts, collaborative design, and service design. She has an MFA in Printmaking and Book Arts and an MA in Visual and Critical Studies from California College of the Arts. He is on the Editorial Board of Radical Teacher.close
CUP and CUP teaching artist Heidi Neilson worked with students from Lyons Community School in Brooklyn on “Air it Out,” a City Studies about NYC’s air pollution. Those students were Jonathan Bryant, Jordan Byrdsell, Monica Castro, Kamani Harrell, Elijah Harris, Devale Johnson, Marcell Lopez, Matthew Lopez, Jahquon Mackey, David Mahon, Lleymi Martinez, Shearod Meadows, Devante Mitchell, Isaiah Morales, Jayda Nadal, Isabel Negron, Andrew Ruiz, Francisco Santos, Ebanny Santiago, and Destiny Soto.close
Clara is the Program Manager for CUP’s Public Access Design program. Prior to joining CUP, she was an Analyst with Barclays Capital. Clara has a Bachelor of the Arts from the University of Pennsylvania and enjoys doing yoga and dance in her free time.close
Amid Amidi is the award-winning author of numerous books about contemporary and classic animated filmmaking, including the essential “Cartoon Modern: Style and Design in Fifties Animation” and “The Art of Pixar: The Complete Color Scripts and Select Art from 25 Years of Animation.” He is the editor-in-chief of the influential industry website cartoonbrew.com. In addition to writing extensively about the animation art form, he lectures at studios, schools and festivals internationally. He lives in Brooklyn.close
Jason Anderson, one of CUP’s co-founders, is an architectural designer in New York City. Originally from Seattle, Jason has worked and taught in New York and Beijing, where he lived for four years after being awarded the Henry Luce Scholarship in 2005. Jason holds a Master of Architecture from Princeton University and a Bachelor of Arts from Columbia University. Jason served on CUP’s board and as Treasurer from 1997-2006. He continues to be a supporter and a huge fan.close
Students from College Now at New Design High School and the Urban Assembly Academy of Government and Law who worked on an Urban Investigation about disaster preparedness. Those students were: Christy Chavez, Oscar Fermin, Diosa Melenciano, Rosa Melenciano, Christian Ogando, Christopher Santos, Jeffrey Salazar, Tajanay Sajous, Malik Tucker; with help from Magdiel Ciego, Kymani Hanley, and Danielle Hernandez.close
Ruben Arroyo, from City-as-School, was part of the Water Underground crew in 2006.close
Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE) is a non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the lives of Asian Americans and all of those who are in need. Founded in 1974 to advocate for equal rights, AAFE has transformed in the past four decades to become one of New York’s preeminent housing, social service and community development organizations. AAFE is committed to preserving affordable housing throughout New York and to providing new opportunities for the city’s diverse immigrant communities. AAFE provides education, financial assistance and training to empower people, small businesses and neighborhoods. Its research, advocacy and grassroots organizing initiatives help to shape government policy and to effect positive change. At its heart, AAFE embodies the hopes and dreams of New York’s many vibrant immigrant communities, and helps turn those dreams into reality. AAFE contributed to the development of What is Affordable Housing?close
ANHD is a 501c3 membership organization founded in 1974, comprised of 98 nonprofit neighborhood housing groups serving low- and moderate-income New Yorkers. Over the past decade alone, ANHD’s training, policy research, advocacy, strategic communications, and leadership development for grassroots groups and residents has leveraged over $1.3 billion for affordable housing, rescued over 30,000 apartments and 160 buildings for low-income residents, and created break through policies for community development. ANHD is collaborating with CUP on an MPP about the Responsible Banking Act and contributed to the development of the Affordable Housing Toolkit and Zoning Toolkit.close
Kate is an artist and an urbanist. She holds a bachelor’s in studio art from USC and a master’s in urban planning from the Harvard Graduate School of Design. She recently spent a year as a Harvard fellow in Mexico City, creating the project “Museum of the Future” that involved time travel and building a time machine with over 100 youth. She is a founding member of the Department of Play, a new collective that will infuse Boston with temporary play zones. She has developed art projects and youth collaborations in the US, Latin America and Poland. Her work examines collective imagination as a tool for bold, inclusive city-making, and her process connects local histories toward the future to build local agency. Originally from Poland, Balug grew up in Chicago. She was a CUP teaching artist for “Museumopolis,” where she led youth at Dia:Beacon on a quest to research the role of a museum in a city and build three fantasy museums.close
Jake Barton is principal and Founder of Local Projects, which is creating the media design for the 9/11 Memorial Museum, StoryCorps, Change By Us, and the Frank Gehry designed Eisenhower Presidential Memorial. Local Projects has visited the White House three-times as a National Design Award finalist, and was named the second most innovative design firm by Fast Company for its use of technology to redefine urban spaces and emotional storytelling. Jake is recognized as a leader in the field of interaction design for physical spaces, and in the creation of collaborative storytelling projects where participants generate content. Current clients include the BMW Guggenheim Lab, Seaworld, Microsoft, Google, Cleveland Museum of Art, and the National Museum of African-American History and Culture.close
Sean works for the Street Vendor Project, a membership-based organization of more than 700 vendors who work together to protect the rights of vendors and promote vendor-friendly reform. Sean worked with CUP to help produce the MPP Vendor Power!close
Tess Bath was a CUP intern. She is a Hunter College student studying “Urban Space and Politics” through CUNY’s Unique and Interdisciplinary Studies Program. Straddling geography and urban studies, her focus aims to break down the complex web of actors/systems/structures that produce urban space. Tess spent a good long year drooling over CUP and was honored to be given the opportunity to continue this practice in the splendor of their office. Hailing from southeast Florida, she spends much of her time pragmatically reimagining the notoriously “apolitical” suburbs and hopes to apply her experiences in the city and with CUP to alternative and critical pedagogical initiatives back home. In her free time she enjoys jamming out on the air guitar to Weezer.close
Eddie Bautista is an award-winning community organizer and urban planner who currently serves as the Executive Director of the NYC Environmental Justice Alliance (NYC-EJA), an umbrella network of community-based organizations in low-income communities of color throughout the City. From 2006 to 2010, Eddie served as Director of the Mayor’s Office of City Legislative Affairs. As Director, Eddie spearheaded efforts to pass several major pieces of legislation, including the City‚Äôs 20-year landmark Solid Waste Management Plan. Previously, Eddie was the Director of Community Planning for NY Lawyers for the Public Interest (NYLPI), where he served as the lobbying/communications/community organizing director for this non-profit civil rights law firm. At NYLPI, Eddie organized numerous grassroots coalitions and campaigns, including the Organization of Waterfront Neighborhoods (OWN) and Communities United for Responsible Energy (CURE). Eddie has a B.A. from N.Y.U., an M.S. in City and Regional Planning from Pratt Institute and was a Revson Fellow at Columbia University. In 2003, Eddie was among 17 national winners of the Ford Foundation‚Äôs Leadership for a Changing World awards. Eddie is also a Visiting Professor at Pratt Institute‚ Graduate Center for Planning and the Environment.
Eddie was a MPP juror.close
Vicki Been is the Boxer Family Professor of Law at New York University and the Director of Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy. She is at the cutting edge of legal scholarship in land use, urban policy, and housing. Been writes about land use and housing policy, the Fifth Amendment’s takings clause, environmental justice, and fair housing. She is the co-author of a leading land use casebook, Land Use Controls, with Robert Ellickson, Rick Hills and Christopher Serkin. Been’s current research focuses on the public policy aspects of the mortgage finance crisis, the effect of the housing crisis on Black and Latino families, the role of zoning and other regulations in shaping development patterns, and historic preservation. In February 2012, the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy, which Been co-directs, was named a recipient of the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions in recognition of the Furman Center’s excellence in providing objective, policy-relevant research to address the challenges facing neighborhoods in New York City and across the nation.close
Francisca Benitez is an artist born in Chile in 1974. Architect (University of Chile,1998), Master in Fine Arts (Hunter College CUNY, 2007).
Her videos, photographs and drawings are exhibited internationally, most recently at El Museo del Barrio in New York, Parc de la Villette in Paris and
Museu de Arte Contemporánea da USP in Sao Paulo. She has been involved with CUP since 2001 working on several educational projects and exhibitions.
AJ Blandford is a former co-founding CUP board member. As a designer/builder she has worked together with artists including robbinschilds,
AL Steiner, Fritz Haeg, Shannon Ebner, Manfred Pernice, and Davide Balula. She is currently a doctoral student in the History program at
Rutgers University where she studies the cultural history of 19th century American arts and sciences.