Gerri Lamb, community advocate, public housing activist, 73

Gerri Lamb, community advocate, public housing activist, 73
Gerri Lamb in 2010.
File Photo

Gerri B. Lamb a Castle Hill resident and a community activist for over four decades, died on July 31, 2018, at the age of 73.

Lamb was born on January 11, 1945, in Wilmington, North Carolina.

By the late 1960s, Lamb moved to the Bronx, where she ran the Castle Hill Tenants Association and proceeded to work in the Bronx community as a volunteer on behalf of its residents, particularly children, seniors and the poor, through such venues as Pathways for Youth and the Kips Bay Boys and Girls Club.

For many years, Lamb served as president of the North Bronx Council of NYCHA Tenants, and since its inception in 1991, she chaired the Citywide Council of Presidents, making her one of the more powerful women in New York’s public housing.

For more than 20 years, Lamb also served as Castle Hill Resident Association president.

In 1983, Lamb was able to bring the first ‘off-campus’ site of Touro College to the Castle Hill Community, and during the next four years, more than 20 community residents received their Associate’s or Bachelor’s Degree. She was the driving force behind the ongoing renovation of Castle Hill’s community center and the Annual Castle Hill Community Day Celebration.

Lamb was also responsible for the addition of a gym and bringing in employment, education, computer, literacy, and guidance programs.

Her passion for helping people resulted in her being appointed to Community Board 9, where she remained for more than 25 years, serving in housing, zoning and land use, youth and other committees.

Most recently, Lamb served as a legislative aide for Councilman Ruben Diaz, Sr., for whom she had also worked during his tenure in the Senate office.

Gerri Lamb also served on the staffs of former Assembly members Aurelia Greene, Israel Ruiz, Efrain Gonzalez, Jr.

Lamb was the recipient of many awards, including the New York State Minorities in Criminal Justice, Inc.; 2012 I.S. 131 Parents Association Award; 2007 New York State Housing Authority Queens Community Operations Women’s History Month; 2007 Bronx Christian Charismatic Prayer Fellowship Award; 2010 Women of Distinction Award; the Top 25 Bronx Most Influential Women.

Lamb was honored to be among the 3.5 million visitors to the National Museum of African American History in Washington, DC. She visited the museum just weeks before her death.

Bronx Elected officials used their social media to express their heartfelt condolences about her unexpected passing.

“My heart is heavy as I am saddened to announce the passing of a friend, staffer, and incredible advocate for the people of Castle Hill – Ms. Gerri Lamb. Gerri Lamb and I have been friends for over 30 years and she has been nothing but kind & loving to myself and others. This is a woman who simply cannot be replaced. She was one of a kind in many regards and I will miss her dearly,” Councilman Reverend Ruben Diaz stated.

“With the passing of Gerri Lamb, the Bronx has lost one of its most powerful and principled advocates for public housing. May she rest in peace,” stated Councilman Ritchie Torres.

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