Rockefeller Foundation President Dr. Judith Rodin has announced that Ronald Shiffman will receive the 2012 Jane Jacobs Medal for Lifetime Leadership for his extensive commitment to community development. Ron Shiffman is a contributing author to the book What We See.
For more than fifty years, Mr. Shiffman has been working to promote community-based activism. His work to rebuild Bedford-Stuyvesant through economic development programs inspired the creation of the Pratt Institute Center for Community and Environmental Development, which he, along with Dr. George Raymond, founded in 1964. The center continues to empower low- and moderate-income communities in New York to plan for and realize their futures. In recent years, Mr. Shiffman has advised Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn, an organization that incorporates voices from the Brooklyn community in planning and development.
The announcement of this award parallels the recent publication of Beyond Zuccotti Park: Freedom of Assembly and the Occupation for Public Space (New Village Press, October 2, 2012) for which Ron Shiffman is the lead editor. The book Beyond Zuccotti Park was conceived in response to the forced clearance of Occupy activities from public plazas throughout the country and examines the importance of public space as a critical civic forum for citizen expression. Forty contributing authors offer original essays about public space, including where and how people can congregate publicly today and whose voices are heard. The book is part of a larger national initiative also led by Ron Shiffman—Democracy, Equity, and Public Space. Mr. Shiffman will present Beyond Zuccotti Park October 19 at the 2012 MAS (Municipal Art Society) Summit for New York City.