Above: Sharon Lee, Sally Tallant, Robert Arigo.
Lee to take over for Miller
Borough President Melinda Katz announced the appointment of Sharon Lee as deputy borough president. The post was formerly held by Melva Miller.
“Sharon has been a trusted member of my senior leadership team for years, and I could not think of a more prepared or knowledgeable person to serve as deputy borough president,” said Katz.
Lee has served as Katz’s communications director since November 2014. She has been an integral part of the teams driving the administration’s top priorities, including the restoration of the New York State Pavilion, Jamaica NOW Action Plan, Vietnam Veterans Memorial of Queens, the Western Queens Tech Zone Strategic Plan, and the redevelopments of Willets Point, LaGuardia Airport and Kennedy Airport.
Lee also directed and authored Katz’s four State of the Borough addresses, series of Know Your Rights Weeks, and her public positions on issues ranging from immigration, hate crimes, education, governance, public works and more.
“It is an honor to be appointed,” said Lee. “The future of New York is Queens, and I share Borough President Katz’s vision and commitment to empowering the many global communities that call Queens home.”
Lee graduated from the University of Wisconsin with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science, and holds a master’s degree in Labor Studies from the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies.
During her tenure, which began in February 2015, Miller designed the Jamaica NOW Action Plan and led the creation of the Western Queens Tech Strategic Plan.
“Not only has she been a fierce advocate for the 2.35 million residents of Queens, she is an intelligent, passionate person and a good friend,” Katz said. “Her incredible works over the past decade will without a doubt continue to yield strength across Queens communities for generations to come.”
Tallant tapped to head museum
The Queens Museum has tapped Sally Tallant, a respected British arts professional with extensive international experience, as its new president and executive director.
In 2011, Tallant was appointed artistic director and CEO of Liverpool Biennial, the UK’s largest international festival of contemporary art, where she has a year-round program of permanent and temporary public art commissions.
Between 2001 and 2011, she served as head of Programs at London’s acclaimed Serpentine Galleries, where she was responsible for developing and delivering an integrated program of exhibitions, architecture, education and public programs.
“Amid the difficulties and stress points we see in the world today, institutions like the Queens Museum are key in terms of creating cultural spaces for people to engage with the urgent issues of our time,” said Tallant. “This museum is a global treasure.”
Tallant replaces Laura Raicovich, who resigned from her position in January. Ms. Tallant’s appointment commences next spring.
Museum board chair Mark Coleman said the search team was attracted to Tallant’s depth of experience in managing partnerships with a range of stakeholders and communities.
Her work in both Liverpool and London frequently required the navigation of complex partnerships with multiple organizations and public agencies.
Working closely with local political, community and civic leaders, she developed a number of creative, place-making strategies that helped to successfully embed art and culture within various civic milieus.
“The Queens Museum aimed to find a new leader who was an experienced museum professional with international credentials,” said Coleman. “Tallant’s unique combination of local and global experience in the arts world made her the superlative choice for leading the Queens Museum and serving the borough’s distinctively international constituency.”
Arigo named VP at M&R
M&R Hotel Management announced the appointment of Robert Arigo, a 29-year hospitality veteran, as vice president of operations, responsible for overseeing the company’s 15 managed hotels in the New York metropolitan area.
He previously was senior director of operations for the New York properties of Hersha Hospitality Management, a division of Philadelphia-based Hersha Hospitality Trust.
From 2010 to 2012, he was chief operating officer and asset manager for New York-based Widewaters Hotels. He served as general manager of hotels in New York, Florida and Virginia from 2007 to 2010.
Arigo’s asset management experience includes senior positions from 2005 to 2007 with Capital Hotel Management and Highgate Hotels, where he had oversight of Goldman Sachs’ significant lodging portfolio.
“Robert Arigo’s expertise will facilitate achievement of our performance and service goals systemwide,” said M&R COO Brian McSherry. “His mandate is to ensure each of our managed hotels meets, if not exceeds, the high service standards set by M&R and our affiliated brands.”
Arigo earned a bachelor of science degree in finance at Bentley College. He has been recognized with multiple Hotel of the Year and Award of Excellence citations by Marriott International, Hilton Worldwide and Hersha Hospitality Management.
M&R Hotel Management, based in Great Neck, seven hotels in Queens, including five near JFK Airport.
Its portfolio includes the brands of Hilton Worldwide, Marriott International, InterContinental Hotels Group, Choice Hotels International, Wyndham Hotels & Resorts and Best Western Hotels & Resorts.