Susan Donoghue Receives The Commissioner's Award
At this year's Parks Annual Awards Ceremony, Senior Advisor and Assistant Commissioner of Communications and Sustainability Initiatives Susan Donoghue was honored with the Commissioner's Award.
On Earth Day in 2007, when Mayor Bloomberg announced PlaNYC, an ambitious and practical plan to make New York America´s first sustainable city, it was clear that we had our work cut out for us. Many of the Plan’s most ambitious initiatives fell under Parks’ jurisdiction, including planting one million new trees and ensuring that every New Yorker lives within a 10 minute walk of a park. To accomplish such a feat would take a skillful team player, and also, a superb leader. Parks is fortunate to have found both in Sue Donoghue.
Sue first started at Parks in June, 2007 as Director of the Open Space Initiatives identified in PlaNYC. In September 2008, after quickly demonstrating excellent leadership skills in bringing together units across Parks and also forging external partnerships, Sue was promoted to Assistant Commissioner for PlaNYC. Under Sue’s leadership, Parks has not only met, but exceeded our PlaNYC goals. We have broken ground on five regional parks, including the McCarren Pool and Rockaway Park, with three more to begin this year. We also reached our halfway mark of the Million Trees campaign (ahead of schedule), completed 25 of 26 asphalt to turf sites, installed field lighting at 14 of 19 fields, constructed 312 Greenstreets, and celebrated the opening of the 200th Schoolyards to Playgrounds site.
In February 2010, to build on the success of the PlaNYC projects, Sue was promoted to Assistant Commissioner for Sustainability Initiatives, and charged with broadening her focus to capture all sustainability efforts across the Agency under a cohesive framework. She launched an internal agency task force and subsequently oversaw the creation of the agency’s first ever Sustainability Plan, “Sustainable Parks,” which communicates, measures, and ties together agency-wide green initiatives.
In September 2010, Sue was promoted to her current position: Senior Advisor and Assistant Commissioner for Communications and Strategic Initiatives. In this role she continues to oversee PlaNYC, MillionTreesNYC and the Office of Sustainability Initiatives, but now also oversees the Press Office, New Media, and the Strategic Partnerships efforts. Sue has helped the agency turn significant focus on our strategic partnerships with critical philanthropic and major non-profit organizations. These efforts have laid the groundwork for new entrepreneurial collaborations that will solidify this administration’s legacy as a trailblazer in the field of public-private partnerships.
With all that Sue has accomplished in her tenure with the agency, it is her leadership and managerial prowess that set her apart. Sue is extremely skilled at building consensus, forming partnerships and alliances, and cultivating her staff. She is a big picture thinker who can also “connect the dots.” Sue is a good listener with a positive attitude and an infectious laugh, and is a pleasure to work with.
Sue earned a Masters degree in Public Administration from NYU’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service in May, 2007 with a specialization in Public and Nonprofit Management and Policy. Prior to graduate school, Sue spent the majority of her career in the Financial Services Industry. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Vermont and currently lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn with her husband and three children. Several mornings a week before work, Sue can be found jogging in Prospect Park (which may help explain her endless energy and upbeat demeanor).
QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
“I was going to have cosmetic surgery until I noticed that the doctor's office was full of portraits by Picasso.”
(1953 - )