New Bronx commissioner named by NYC Parks

Rodriguez-Rosa fills the Bronx Parks commissioner slot six months after Hector Aponte retired from the position.
Photo courtesy of NYC Parks / Daniel Avila

NYC Parks has a new Bronx commissioner.

On Monday, June 1, NYC Parks commissioner Mitchell J. Silver and NYC Parks appointed Iris Rodriguez-Rosa as Bronx Parks commissioner.

Rodriguez-Rosa, who previously served as Queens chief of recreation since 2006, brings nearly 30 years of experience working for NYC Parks to the Bronx and its recreation areas.

Throughout her career, Iris has held various positions in a number of capacities in various divisions citywide including the Bronx, where she served as the Bronx chief of recreation from 1994 to 2006.

During that tenure, she was instrumental in converting all of the borough’s recreation centers into multi-purpose facilities, which increased the recreational opportunities in those particular neighborhoods.

She also oversaw the renovation of the St. James Recreation Center which was upgraded to a full-service membership center.

As Queens chief of recreation, she oversaw the opening of the Flushing Meadows Corona Park Aquatic Center and the Al Oerter Recreation Center.

She also secured funding for musical performances though a partnership with Queens College.

In addition, she helped establish ‘friends of’ groups in High Bridge and East Harlem and was also one of the founding members of the NYC Parks Latino Society.

“I am pleased to announce the appointment of (Iris) Rodriguez-Rosa as Bronx Parks commissioner,” said Silver. “Iris is a leader in organizing communities and getting residents involved in their parks. Along with those great qualities, she is also someone who puts her family first and is very proud of her Puerto Rican heritage as well as being a New Yorker. Please join me in welcoming Iris to her new role.”

Excited to be appointed the new Bronx Parks commissioner, Rodriguez-Rosa looks forward to working on different projects and intends to increase awareness among Bronxites about the numerous parks that their borough has to offer.

“I am so happy to have the opportunity to lead the Parks Department in the Bronx,” said Rodriguez Rosa. “As a life-long New Yorker, parks have been an integral part of my life and I am looking forward to further connecting Bronx communities to their open spaces. Thanks to the support of our local elected officials, NYC Parks has been able to make substantial investments in our Bronx parks over the years and we are moving forward with exciting projects including this year’s highly anticipated opening of the High Bridge, community-led renovations to St. Mary’s Park and the construction of Estella Diggs Park.”

“I am looking forward to working with the Bronx’s dedicated elected officials, park advocates, stakeholders and volunteers to ensure an equitable park system and thriving Bronx parks,” said Rodriguez Rosa.

Rodriguez-Rosa appointment as Bronx Parks commissioner fills a vacant slot left by former commissioner Hector Aponte, who retired in January after holding the position for ten years.

Reach Reporter Steven Goodstein at (718) 742–3384. E-mail him at sgoodstein@cnglocal.com.

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