Press Release

Joint Statement by REBNY Chairman William C. Rudin and President James Whelan on the Passing of Mayor David Dinkins


November 24, 2020

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New York City mourns one of its trailblazing public servants with the passing of Mayor David Dinkins, the first and only Black mayor of New York City. A longtime resident and active member of the Harlem community, Mayor Dinkins’ love and deep understanding of our City was reflected throughout his political career and in his personal endeavors.

As mayor, Dinkins, the son of a real estate broker, championed key redevelopment and revitalization projects like the transformation of Times Square and the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center that forever changed the face of our City – for the better. He also launched now classic New York City cultural events including Fashion Week and Restaurant Week, which for years have served as reliable revenue drivers for our City.

Mayor Dinkins also served New York City during a financially challenging time for the City accompanied by racial and socio-economic unrest – not unlike the challenges we are seeing today. To address these quality of life issues, he significantly increased the size of the New York Police Department, which led to a dramatic decrease in crime, and implemented programs to address homelessness, which resulted in a record decrease in the size of the City’s shelter population. His leadership on these, and other issues, will be greatly missed.

There was always a deep mutual respect and comradery between Dinkins and REBNY leadership given our shared focus on strengthening our City. Our thoughts are with Mayor Dinkins’ family and all New Yorkers who had the pleasure of working with and knowing him.
- Real Estate Board of New York Chairman William C. Rudin and President James Whelan