A New Day for Portland Parks and Open Spaces
A COMMUNITY CONVERSATION WITH ADRIAN BENEPE
A leading global expert on connecting the public, private, and nonprofit sectors in public-space development and management, Mr. Benepe is Senior Vice President, Director of City Park Development at The Trust for Public Land and former NYC Parks Commissioner.
Green Spaces Coalition, Portland Parks Commission, The Trust for Public Land / Friends of Canco Woods, Friends of Capisic Pond Park, Friends of Congress Square Park, Friends of Deering Oaks, Friends of the Eastern Promenade, Friends of Evergreen Cemetery, Friends of Lincoln Park, Spirits Alive (Eastern Cemetery), Stewards of the Western Cemetery / Architalx, Cultivating Community, Creative Portland, Friends of Casco Bay, Greater Portland Landmarks, Oceanside Conservation Trust of Casco Bay, Portland’s Downtown District, Portland Museum of Art, Portland Public Art Committee, Portland Public Library, Portland Trails, Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce, Maine College of Art, Maine Jewish Museum, Maine Historical Society, Maine Preservation, Maine Society of Landscape Architects, SPACE Gallery, University of New England, University of Southern Maine – Department of Environmental Sciences.
Adrian Benepe has worked in a leadership role on park and public space conservation, design, construction, and operation, and in the realms of city planning, arts and culture, historic preservation, as well as landscape and urban design, all in the public and non-profit sector, his entire career. Much of that work was done at the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation, where he was Parks Commissioner for 11 years under Mayor Bloomberg. Since September 2012, he has served as Senior Vice President and Director of City Park Develoment for The Trust for Public Land. In this role, Benepe oversees the urban work of over 30 offices whose projects include parks, playgrounds, gardens, trails, and greenways across the United States. Benepe earned a B.A. in English Literature from Middlebury College and a Master’s Degree in Journalism from Columbia University, where he was awarded a Pulitzer Fellowship.
T.M. (Mac) Deford graduated from Yale in 1964 and joined the Foreign Service the following year, spending three years in Vietnam. He studied Arabic in Beirut after which he was assigned as a political officer to the embassy in Jidda, Saudi Arabia. He was posted to Washington, New York, and Amman, Jordan before joining Merrill Lynch International in 1978. He spent much of a nearly two-decade career with Merrill in the Far East, retiring in 1997 to Maine, where he has written a weekly foreign policy column for the local newspaper since 2001. He has served on a number of nonprofit boards, including International College in Beirut, the recently-established graduate School for Policy and International Affairs at the University of Maine, and the Nieman Fellows for Journalism at Harvard.