In 1979, the LDCENY became the city's first industrial Business Improvement District and has since brought millions in investment to East New York.
In 1979, the LDCENY became the city's first industrial Business Improvement District and has since brought millions in investment to East New York. Photo credit: LDCENY / FB

The Local Development Corporation of East New York is turning 40 and celebrating the milestone birthday with an anniversary gala on Wednesday, June 19, bringing together business people, artists, community and civic leaders to mark the organization’s four decades of service for local businesses.

Through its commercial revitalization efforts, the LDCENY has worked with local merchants to improve the area’s commercial corridors while supporting residents through job training, employment, business development, financial literacy and housing programs. Additionally, the organization empowers low-to-moderate income women and minorities with programs that promote economic sufficiency, build assets and improve their lives and those of their families.

The LDCENY was founded in 1979 by a group of local manufacturers to provide ombudsman services for local businesses. Soon after its inception, and working with the City of New York, the LDCENY initiated the first in-place industrial park program for manufacturers. Other initiatives followed, among the most notable being the first industrial Business Improvement District in the city.

Subsequently, the organization expanded its mission to address the business development and other needs of local residents; the LDCENY became one of the first organizations to offer entrepreneurial development training and assistance under New York State’s Entrepreneurial Assistance program and the SBA’s Women’s Business Center. In 2005, the LDCENY formed an affiliate housing development organization that has partnered with private developers to produce over 800 units of affordable apartments.

Over the past 40 years, the LDCENY has brought millions of dollars in investment to East New York.

“As we celebrate 40 years on this Juneteenth, the LDCENY looks forward to the next 40 years of serving the community with programs to enhance existing businesses, supporting the development of new enterprises, building affordable housing and promoting East New York as a great place to live and work,” said Executive Director Sherry Roberts.

The LDCENY’s anniversary celebration will also be on occasion to honor local entrepreneurs, businesses and community members. Among the honorees are former Congressman Edolphus “Ed” Towns; DeCosta Headley, CEO of Strong Power Consultants; Belmont Metals, a manufacturer of non-ferrous metals that has operated in East New York for 123 years; real estate development firm Arker Company; and Sadia Seymour, CEO of Behind the Rack, a fashion services company.

The LDCENY’s 40th Anniversary Gala will take place on Wednesday, June 19, 6:00pm, at Liberty Warehouse in Red Hook. For more information, go here.

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Andrea Leonhardt

“Made in Germany,” Andrea Leonhardt is the managing editor for BK Reader. Andrea holds a bachelor’s degree in political science, with minors in American studies and education, and a master’s...

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