Boerum Hill Association

Meet the Board and learn about our meetings.


The Board

We are your neighbors, who want to improve our community. We continue to balance preservation and progress. We’ve been able to achieve some great things during the past decade:

     Fighting for a fairer and appropriately designed Brooklyn Detention Center.

     Reducing the scale of the 80 Flatbush development. 

     Downzoning the neighborhood to preserve our brownstone charm. 

     The renovation of 16 Sycamores Playground (on Schermerhorn Street, just west of Third Avenue). 

     Expanding our Historic District. Advocating for Brooklyn’s First Neighborhood Slow Zone with a 20-mph limit.

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Howard Kolins, President

Howard Kolins has been President of the BHA for ten years. Working with other board members and local residents he has spearheaded many board projects including the Historic District extension, neighborhood re-zoning, chairing the very successful House Tours, opposing the Brooklyn Detention Center’s expansion and the 80 Flatbush development. Howard has lived in Boerum Hill for 35 years both as a tenant and an owner. He met his wife, Carol, a Rockette, when he was a producer for Radio City Entertainment. She is a special education teacher at the Rivendell School in Gowanus. They have two boys one a graduate of Murrow High School now enrolled at the Berklee School of Music and the other an alum of Brooklyn Tech and Stony Brook Honors now a recent Columbia Masters graduate (Statistics). Howard is a self-employed producer of business meetings, special events and galas. His garage is home to the annual Hoyt Street Association Plant Sale.


Dwight Smith, Vice President

Dwight Smith is a 35-year resident of Boerum Hill.  He currently serves as a Vice President of the Boerum Hill Association, a Community Board 2 board member, a Community Board 2 Parks and he represents CB2 at Atlantic Yards Quality of Life meetings. He is also a long-standing Hoyt Street Association Garden sale volunteer.  He has over 30 years of corporate and government experience in finance and strategic planning. He now works as a consultant.


Jonathan Brecht

Jonathan Brecht was born and educated in New York City. He is a graduate of Manhattan College (BA, History) and New York University (MBA, Finance). Upon graduation from college, Jonathan entered the US Foreign Service and was stationed in Washington, DC and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. He subsequently returned to New York, obtained his MBA, and has worked for Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley and Citigroup in private wealth management for over 22 years. He primarily advises individuals and small businesses in the service industries, arts and professions on a range of financial, banking and investment issues. Jonathan and his wife Paula bought their house at 269 Warren Street in 1996 and have gradually restored the property. Their daughters, Natasha and India, currently attend the Packer Collegiate Institute in Brooklyn Heights. Jonathan is also active in 2 non-partisan foreign affairs organizations, the Middle East Institute and the Foreign Policy Association.

Cheryl Gelbs

Cheryl Gelbs has lived in the downtown Brooklyn area for 32 years - nine in Brooklyn Heights and the past 23 years in Boerum Hill. She and her husband, Mark, are proud parents of two wonderful children; both are graduates of P.S 261 and Brooklyn Technical High School. Cheryl has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from St. Francis College and Master of Science degree in Organizational Behavior from NYU Poly. She recently retired from Verizon after 30 years as a manager in the Telecommunication industry and is currently serving as Treasurer of the 84th Precinct Community Council. Her family has been members of BHA for many years and she has decided to become more active in the Association. “The preservation and enhancement of the Downtown Brooklyn way of life is very important to me as the Borough undergoes a major renaissance.”

Hannah Mason

Hannah Mason Originally from Michigan, Hannah moved with her family to Kensington, Brooklyn when she was 12 years old. Since then she has lived in several borough neighborhoods including Carroll Gardens, Cobble Hill, Prospect Heights and Bay Ridge. Hannah now lives on Dean Street in Boerum Hill with her partner and three young children. Hannah was the Exhibitions Manager at the Brooklyn Museum for seven years. She’s a founding member of Fool’s Pearls Productions, a New York based theater group and is an active member of the city’s performing arts scene. Among the many important issues facing BH residents today, the Atlantic Yards, traffic/transportation and accessible green space are of interest to her. She has been on the board for four years.

Sid Meyer

Sidney Meyer has been a resident of Boerum Hill since 1978 and a resident of Brooklyn even longer. He has been a resident of New York City for his entire life, a member of the Brooklyn Community Board 2 for over 10 years. His work history includes the community representative (among other duties) for a large retailer (Korvettes when it existed); an assistant director of personnel for a State Hospital in Brooklyn; a Driver Safety Specialist for the NY State DMV; a senior executive for a PPO, and an HMO. He is an attorney graduated from Brooklyn Law School (of course). His interests are varied and include extensive travel and trying to keep up with his three grandchildren. He takes great pride in his son Michael and his five wonderful grandchildren.

Steve Neiman

Steve Neiman has lived at 248 Wyckoff St for the past 7 years, with his friend Ellen, our dog and 4 cats. In 2010, he retired after 43 years of teaching, 31 of them at the Little Red School House, in Manhattan. As a show of support for the BHA, he frequents Boerum Hill Association meetings. “Communities stay healthy only if people support the work of those who are willing to make the time to monitor community problems and work at improving conditions. Life in Boerum Hill has greatly improved over the past few decades. I'd like to become more active at doing my small part in keeping this good work going.”

Stephen P. Radacinski

Stephen P. Radacinski lives on Hoyt Street having moved to BH in 1982 and currently works as a Security Consultant after retiring from the NYPD at the rank of Sergeant after 20 years. He was also a 1st Lieutenant in the US Army and a graduate of ST. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas.

Laura Stern Schwartz

Lauren Stern Schwartz has lived in Boerum Hill since 2012 with her husband, Ori, and their children, Naomi and Eliot. They enjoy participating in neighborhood events and hope to contribute to the greater community. Lauren worked with Brooklyn neighbors to fight proposals to build an over-sized development in the recently completed extension of the Boerum Hill Historic District. She is the principal of Lauren Stern Design, an interior design studio that provides design and renovation solutions for residential, commercial and hospitality clients. 


Rose Weber, treasurer

Rose Weber, a long-time resident of Hoyt Street is our Treasurer. While she is not a board member she keeps in financial accounts in order and her contribution is greatly appreciated.



Monthly Board meetings

Monthly board meetings are held on the first Tuesday of every month from September through June, 7:00 pm at the Hopkins Center located on Pacific Street near Hoyt Street. Please check the calendar for the date, often subject to change, and confirmed location.

Quarterly General Meetings

General Meetings are held the third Thursday of October, January and April on a variety of topics such as traffic, development, greening, Postal Service or anything neighbors want to discuss. These meetings are held at the Belarusian Church on Atlantic Avenue and Bond Street beginning at 7:00 pm.


We seek to preserve and enhance the unique qualities of our neighborhood through advocacy, education and community building.

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