I AM OHNY is a campaign we began in late 2011 to highlight and celebrate OHNY’s diverse community of supporters. We sat down with a number of OHNY supporters, participants, sponsors and partners to ask them about their view of OHNY and why they love New York City. Scroll down to see who we interviewed and what they had to say.

Click on the names or photos to read the full interview.

 

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Marilynn Davis
Partner, K2S Advisors
OHNY Board of Directors

“It’s important that the citizens who inhabit the city have an opportunity to appreciate its history and promise. Welcoming forums like OHNY are important to this education and to the encouragement of the expanded perspective and awareness that characterize New Yorkers.”

 

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Ben Helmer
OHNY Volunteer Photographer

“Architecture is pointless without people. We need every chance we can get to share New York with the people it was built for. Few organizations enable that like OHNY.”

 

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Pia Yasay
OHNY Weekend District Coordinator

“OHNY provides an opportunity to discover a place or space that you might not have the chance to experience otherwise. It is valuable to me because a lot of the sites I’ve visited are on streets I’ve walked down many times before and in buildings I’ve never given a second thought, but OHNY gives me the chance to experience those unassuming places and uncover something new about New York.”

 

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Rob Rogers
Principal, Rogers Partners
OHNY Board of Directors

“OHNY is important to New York City because it’s about access and information. I believe deeply in an informed citizenry – the more people know about how the city works and why, the better we’ll all be at making decisions and policy. And we’ll make a smarter city.”

 

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Miquela Craytor
Director of NYC Industrial and Income Mobility, New York City Economic Development Corporation
Lead partner on Making it Here

“OHNY connects New Yorkers to places and to each other in a most unique way that reminds us of the connections we all have through our built environment.”

 

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Enrique García Carrera
Associate Principal, Fisher Marantz Stone
OHNY at Night Tour Sponsor

“OHNY is important to New York City because it’s like receiving the real keys to the City.”

 

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Felicia Mayro
Director, Neighborhood Preservation Center
OHNY Weekend Site Sponsor

“OHNY gives anyone who is interested the opportunity to see, experience, and learn about New York City’s built environment. It connects people and the spaces that make our city, and we have some great spaces.”

 

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Penny Hardy
Principal, PS New York

“OHNY celebrates the diversity of visions and design perspectives in New York. It keeps us curious to learn more about the city and reminds us of the diversity that exists throughout the five boroughs.”

 

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Brendan Crain
Program Director, Open House New York

“New Yorkers love to know their city in a way that I think is very unique to this town. New Yorkers love New York in a really distinct and strong way. OHNY makes a social activity out of it, allowing us to explore the city and learn about it together.”

 

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Jacqueline Shaw
OHNY Weekend District Coordinator

“In a city of so many people and opportunities, it’s really nice to share unforgettable moments and learn about unforgettable spaces with a few.”

 

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Eric Ball
OHNY Member, Weekend District Coordinator, 2013 Weekend Committee

“OHNY is important to New York City because seeing inside what’s around you makes a place feel like home.”

 

Frank Sciame
CEO of Sciame Construction
OHNY Site Sponsor & Supporter

“People should support OHNY because it provides the only opportunity for New Yorkers in all different fields to see inside the wonderful buildings of New York City. It’s truly a unique and tremendous opportunity.”

 

Bob Gelber
OHNY Program Sponsor & Member of the OHNY Volunteer Council

“It is one of the most special events in New York City. What a wonderful opportunity to explore all these sites for free! The only sad thing is that it’s only two days a year. It should be all year long!”

 

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Dorothy Dunn
OHNY Board Member

“I don’t know another organization that represents architecture and design that has been so open and inclusive, not only in regards to the participants but also to the spaces themselves, so anyone could share any space and it would be embraced. In that sense, OHNY has been a great community builder.”

 

Sara Caples & Everardo Jefferson
OHNY Site Sponsors

“OHNY provides the means to explore the city in a way that would not be possible if it did not exist.”

 

Bob Baker
OHNY Participant & Supporter

“OHNY brings buildings to life. When you walk through New York, all the buildings can look huge and impersonal. But when you see the spaces with OHNY you are introduced to the history and purpose of each building. ”

 

 

Gregory Wessner
Executive Director of OHNY

“OHNY opens New York to everyone–to support OHNY is to support New York.”

 

 

Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer
OHNY Supporter

“OHNY is a great magnet for attracting visitors to our City and puts a spotlight on what I love most about New York – the diversity and history of our many neighborhoods and cultures.”

 

Hugh Hardy
Founding partner, H3 Hardy Collaboration Architecture, OHNY Practicing Partner and site & program sponsor

“It is not an event just for architects or developers or planners, it is for everyone. The audience is REALLY diverse and that is very valuable.”

 

   

Robert Hammond
Co-founder of Friends of the High Line

“When we ask our members what program stands out the most, it is always OHNY. It is on the top of everyone’s list. It is a chance for people to participate and do things that most people don’t get a chance to do.”

 

Matthew Blesso
Founder & CEO, Blesso Properties, President of 3rd Ward, OHNY site sponsor

“I love the sense of community that OHNY creates and how so many different people come together for a shared interest. It has a sense of intimacy that is not an easy thing to come by in New York City.”

 

Roy Kim
Senior Vice President Design, Extell Development, OHNY board member and site sponsor

“One of my most memorable OHNY experiences was the tour of One World Trade Center. I was not prepared for how thrilling it would feel to be able to step into the ‘ground zero’ space, and then be able to survey the land from the new building. We were able to sign our names on the building. It was amazing!”

 

Ann V. Reilly
Freelance Print Designer, OHNY Volunteer

“Promoting access to arts education is a pet cause of mine, whether it is access to architecture, visual arts, libraries, etc. Public access is important and that is what OHNY strives to provide.”

 

Ellen Ryan
VP, Strategic Partnerships Brooklyn Bridge Park, OHNY site committee member & site sponsor

“I learned about OHNY by coming across the printed guide and thinking the idea was genius.  Revealing the city’s secrets and inner sanctums, connecting the curious with the curators. I had to get involved!”

 

Brien McDaniel
Director of Public Relations, FXFOWLE, OHNY volunteer and site sponsor

“My first OHNY volunteer/site sponsor training took place at Grace Church in Greenwich Village and it has left a huge impression on me. I was new to New York and the Gothic Revival architecture and the stained glass windows blew me away.”

 

Caroline Otto
Senior Associate – anderson Architects, OHNY board member, site & program sponsor

“Back in 2001, my desk at anderson was right next to Scott Lauer (the founder of OHNY). He talked about living in London and this amazing event (Open House London). He said that we should have the same thing here in New York and that someone needs to start it. I’ve basically been involved in OHNY before it ever even existed.”

 

Mark Gardner
principal, Jaklitsch/Gardner Architects, long-time OHNY volunteer

“An early site I volunteered at for OHNY Weekend was Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, not many people came so the cemetery caretaker took me on a private tour. I didn’t realize that all these jazz greats were buried there. It was a great experience.”

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