Press Release: Kingsbridge Heights Community Center Hosts She Builds 2019


September 27, 2019

CONTACT: Jennifer Barden,, (646) 676-4866


Women-led “She Builds NYC” Initiative Connects Real Estate Industry Leaders with New Yorkers in Need

Photos from She Builds NYC 2019 Are Available at This Dropbox Link

NEW YORK—Today, approximately 100 members of the New York City real estate industry came together for Rebuilding Together NYC’s annual She Builds Day. Envisioned and spearheaded by co-chairs Laura Jackson and Laurie Grasso, along with the She Builds Women in Real Estate committee, this day of service brought volunteers together for vital renovations to the Kingsbridge Heights Community Center in the Bronx.

  Over the course of the day, the women helped refurbish the amphitheater and repair seating, install flooring and workstations in the computer room, construct a pre-fab greenhouse, paint throughout the center, and extend and paint raised garden beds. The renovations will revitalize the century-old facility that continues to house early childhood, youth, and adult services for Bronx families. 

This is Rebuilding Together NYC’s fourth annual She Builds rebuilding event and first in the Bronx after having completed projects for community facilities in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Presenting sponsors for She Builds 2019 were SL Green, Hunton Andrews Kurth, Fried Frank, Duval & Stachenfeld, and Wells Fargo.

Rebuilding Together NYC Executive Director Valerie Payne said, “Community centers provide essential spaces for neighbors of all ages to get together, learn and grow. We’re grateful to this group of women in real estate who volunteered their time and leveraged their expertise to revitalize this central gathering place and better the community.” 

Laurie Grasso of Hunton Andrews Kurth and Laura Jackson of FTI Consulting, co-chairs of the She Builds Planning Committee said, “It’s always amazing to see such a large group of real estate players taking time out of their extremely busy day to make a difference in the lives of the people and the community who regularly use the Kingsbridge Heights Community Center. As real estate professionals, our job is to support and encourage the building and development of infrastructure in this great city, without losing sight of our duty to ensure there is a continued focus on the importance of community. As women in this industry, it is also essential for us to focus on policy initiatives that create more gender inclusion, as well as metrics that hold the real estate industry accountable – across all platforms – to provide more opportunities for women.”

“We’re excited to partner with Rebuilding Together to host She Builds 2019,” said Margaret Della, Executive Director of KHCC. “KHCC’s landmark building serves as a home away from home for more than 4,000 Bronx residents each year. With the hard work of these dedicated volunteers, this event will bring a much-needed bright boost to our special building.” 

Kingsbridge Heights Community Center offers programs and services for over 4500 children, youth, and adults in the Bronx every year, from newborns to seniors, to advance education and well-being for a vibrant Bronx community.

  Volunteers made upgrades and repairs to Kingsbridge Heights Community Center’s main site. Specifically, the volunteers: 

  • Painted computer rooms, bathrooms, youth lounge, office spaces, and cafeteria
  • Installed vinyl plank flooring and workstations in the computer room
  • Refurbished the amphitheater and repaired seating
  • Constructed a pre-fab greenhouse
  • Extended raised garden beds to increase planting space
  • Painted raised beds


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Serving all five boroughs of New York City, Rebuilding Together NYC is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to repair homes, revitalize communities, and rebuild lives. Rebuilding Together NYC works to preserve community assets and maintain affordable housing by creating opportunities for New Yorkers to maintain safe, healthy, and accessible homes and age in place, revitalize community spaces, and develop career paths in the construction trades. To learn more about how you can help, please visit Follow us on Facebook (@RebuildingTogetherNYC), Twitter (@NYC_RT) and Instagram (rt_nyc).


The committee brings together high-powered female industry leaders who are committed to promoting safe and healthy living conditions for women and families. The committee is co-chaired by Laurie Grasso, Partner at Hunton Andrews Kurth and Laura Jackson, Senior Managing Director at FTI Consulting Inc. and Vice President of Rebuilding Together NYC. Committee members include: Maggie Hui, Chief Accounting Officer, SL Green Realty; Helen Hwang, Head of Institutional Investment Sales, Meridian Investment Sales; Val Kitay, General Counsel, Savanna Partners; Michelle Kleger, Vice President, Business Development, Kensington Vanguard; Lesley Lisser, Director, Invesco; Shallini Mehra, Managing Director, Meridian Investment Sales; Lauren Newcorn, Yagoda Real Estate; Amy Nielson, Regional Marketing & Business Development Manager, Hunton Andrews Kurth; Amanda Ryzowy, L+M Development Partners; Jessica Sherman, Project Manager, Douglaston Development; Amy Sole, Senior Managing Director, Emmes Asset Management; and Jessica Zaski, Vice President, Acquisitions, Acadia Realty Trust.



KHCC provides resources to empower Bronx residents from cradle to career to advance education and well-being for a vibrant community. We achieve this in an environment that fosters academic milestones, literacy, mental health support, nutrition, technology, and the arts. To learn more about KHCC, visit our website: