Senior Staff Bios

 

James PatchettJames Patchett  
President & CEO

The President and CEO of New York City Economic Development Corporation, James Patchett has spent his career building stronger cities through investments in affordable housing, innovation, and 21st century infrastructure. In his current role overseeing job growth and economic development for the City of New York, James taps into his deep experience in real estate, finance, government, and urban planning. During his tenure, he has overseen some of the city’s most ambitious projects, including launching a citywide ferry system, developing Mayor de Blasio’s 100,000 jobs plan, and optimizing NYCEDC’s 60 million square feet of real estate.

Prior to his appointment as NYCEDC President in 2016, James served as chief of staff to Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen, where he helped oversee more than 25 city agencies and played a pivotal role in preserving thousands of affordable homes. Before moving to City Hall, James was a vice president in Goldman Sachs’ Urban Investment Group, where he spent seven years providing equity and debt to projects ranging from commercial developments to housing to charter schools.

James currently serves on the board of the Prospect Park Alliance, the non-profit organization responsible for running and maintaining one of Brooklyn’s most beloved greenspaces.

James holds a BA in Economics from Amherst College and an MBA from Stanford University. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and their two young children.

Twitter: @JBPatchett

James N. Katz
Executive Vice President and Chief of Staff
James oversees NYCEDC's Strategic Investments Group and its External Affairs Division, comprised of the Government and Community Relations, Public Affairs, and Marketing departments. He is also chiefly responsible for day-to-day management of the President’s Office. James previously served as Director of Policy and Planning, helping to manage NYCEDC’s transition to the de Blasio administration, and before that was Senior Advisor and Special Counsel to the New York State Attorney General, where he worked on matters related to nonprofit governance and public integrity. James holds a JD from Harvard Law School and a master's degree in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School. He resides in Brooklyn with his wife and two children.

Rachel Loeb 
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
Rachel Loeb is Chief Operating Officer of New York City Economic Development Corporation where she oversees and directs the Corporation’s strategic priorities for real estate, asset management, and planning. Prior to joining NYCEDC, Rachel was a senior executive member of World Wide Group, overseeing all aspects and phases of the development process. Before joining WWG, Rachel was a Senior Director of Development for AvalonBay, where she was responsible for the development of over 1,400 apartments. Rachel began her career in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam where she worked on the Saigon South development, an 8,000-acre new town community. She is a graduate of Northwestern University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where she earned a master's in City Planning. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two sons.

Kim Vaccari
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
Before joining NYCEDC, Kim served as the chief financial officer and treasurer for the New Jersey Transit Corporation. Before joining New Jersey Transit, she worked as a public finance banker for Banc of America Securities on P3 projects and transportation bond financings and as director of finance for the MTA, where she was responsible for all aspects of funding the MTA’s capital program funding and debt issuance. Kim holds a bachelor’s degree in government finance from Wheaton College.

Ana Ariño
Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer

As executive vice president and chief strategy officer, Ana Ariño is responsible for the development and implementation of initiatives that drive innovation in strategic sectors of New York City’s economy. This includes making historic investments and forging public-private partnerships in such areas as cybersecurity, life sciences, data science, inclusive tech, and advanced manufacturing fields, all of which will create future middle-class job opportunities for New Yorkers. She previously led NYCEDC’s strategy team, which is tasked with advising the organization’s president and New York’s City Hall on a range of economic development issues. Before joining NYCEDC, Ana was a consultant at the Boston Consulting Group, where she counseled financial services companies on their strategy and operational efficiency, and worked at Natsource, a carbon asset management firm. She holds an MA in international economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and a degree in economics from the Universidad Autonóma de Madrid. She is fluent in English, Spanish, and French.

Meredith J. Jones
Executive Vice President and General Counsel 
Before joining NYCEDC, Meredith worked at corporate law firms and as counsel to a multi-national engineering and construction company. She also served as general counsel for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and as Chief of the Cable Services Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission. She is a graduate of Swarthmore College and received her Juris Doctor from Yale Law School.
Seth Myers
Executive Vice President and Director of Project Implementation
Seth attended Columbia University and received a graduate degree in urban planning. Before joining NYCEDC, Seth worked in the Mayor’s Office of Capital Project Development where he was involved with key projects in Lower Manhattan and, in particular, at the World Trade Center site. Since 2006, he has managed the planning, design, and construction of large-scale capital and infrastructure projects, with a focus on coordination between multiple agencies or government entities.
Patrick Askew 
Executive Vice President, Capital Division
Patrick Askew leads the Capital Division at NYCEDC, managing the division’s $5 billion project portfolio, including 100+ projects in design/construction, as well as 30+ engineers, architects, landscape architects, and other technical and administrative project support staff. Before joining NYCEDC, Patrick worked with the MTA and served as the Deputy Director of the Independent Engineering Consulting Group where he helped oversee and monitor the MTA’s $32 billion capital program. Before that, he worked at the Port Authority overseeing design and construction at the newly developed World Trade Center site. Patrick is a graduate of Temple and New York University and holds a Masters in Civil Engineering and Business Administration (MBA).
Thomas McKnight
Executive Vice President and Head of Planning, Development, and Transportation
Thomas is a graduate of Fordham University and also has a graduate degree from New York University in urban planning. Before joining NYCEDC, Thomas worked at New York City Council.
Spencer Hobson
Executive Vice President and Treasurer, Finance Group
Spencer oversees NYCEDC’s Finance Division, which includes the Accounting, Budget, and Grants Management departments. Previously, he assisted in managing NYCEDC’s Internal Audit group for many years. He is a life-long resident of Queens, NY and received his bachelor’s degree in accounting from CUNY at York College in Jamaica, Queens. He is a certified public accountant as well as a certified internal auditor. Before joining NYCEDC, Spencer spent several years conducting audits throughout the east coast for a hotel and restaurant employee’s union trust fund. 

Matthew Kwatinetz
Executive Vice President, Asset Management Revenue
Before NYCEDC, Mr. Kwatinetz was the Managing Partner of QBL Partners, a real estate advisory firm focused on multiple bottom line outcomes. QBL’s clients include City of Seattle, City of Austin, King County (WA), City of Surrey (BC), City of SeaTac, Penn’s Institute for Urban Research, City of Shoreline (WA) and the US Department of Energy. From 2010, he worked for Kinzer Real Estate Services, where he supported real estate investment decision-making and site selection for such clients as the University of Washington, Alaska Airlines, and Starbucks Corporation. For Starbucks, he led a team to negotiate the creation of a $150mm manufacturing plant in Augusta, GA. Following that project, he was recruited by the Mayor of Augusta to create Augusta Regional Collaboration Project, which worked with the City and State to consolidate a new research university into the downtown. He specializes in developing quantitative urban models to change the underlying economics of multiple bottom line development— he has presented these models for ICSC, Americans for the Arts, NAIOP, Net Impact, and the Centre for Policy Studies on Culture and Communities. Matthew received his MBA in Real Estate at The Wharton School. He is a graduate of Deep Springs College and Harvard University.

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