BUILDING SOMETHING GREAT
I think that a lot of community-based organizations often get their starts trying to stop something from happening. There was a degree of that when we started — we were trying to stop it from being torn down — but it’s not just about stopping something from happening but about building something great for the future of New York City.
PRESIDENT OF THE WORLD MONUMENTS FUND
New Urbanist, Community Builder & Conservationist
Joshua David founded Friends of the High Line with Robert Hammond in 1999, when the 1.5-mile-long elevated railroad structure on Manhattan’s West Side was under threat of demolition. The organization’s mission was to save the historic structure and transform it into an extraordinary public park. With the help of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, the project broke ground in 2006 and the first section opened to the public in the spring of 2009. Since then, more than three million people have visited the park. In addition to his work at Friends of the High Line, Joshua is also a member of the Advisory Council of Transportation Alternatives.
From 2000 to 2006, he was a member of Manhattan Community Board No. 4, where he served on the Transportation and Planning Committee and played a leadership role in successfully advocating for the 8th Avenue bike lane. Before Joshua turned his attention to the High Line and related projects, he was a freelance magazine writer and freelance editor for Gourmet, Fortune, Travel + Leisure, Wallpaper, and others. He has a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and has lived in Chelsea since 1986.