Spring Garden Civic Association
"Celebration of the Spring Garden Neighborhood"

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2013-14 Spring Garden Civic Association
Officers and Board Members

Nominated For Officers:

President, Justino Navarro

Justino was born and raised in Spring Garden, and attended high school in Puerto Rico. Upon returning to Philadelphia, he attended Temple University, and worked for many years as a senior contract manger at SmithKline, now Glaxo SmithKline. Justino has also served as a certified Spanish translator and interpreter. He lives on the 600 block of N. 15th St. in a historic home that he rehabbed himself over 25 ago. He has served as the Association’s Vice President, a Board member, and a member of the Zoning Committee. Justino was a founding member of the North Street Garden at Sydenham and North Streets in 1992, and The Spring Gardens community garden in 1995. He is a Tree Tender, and has been active in numerous community projects, including tree plantings and community cleanups. He was a key player in the project to rehab 58 units of PHA housing in the eastern end of the community, including helping to assure that the facades were properly historically restored. He was the lead player in the dramatic renovations of the Roberto Clemente Playground in 2010-11, and is similarly active in the effort to situate a dog park in Spring Garden. Justino also serves as a Democratic Committee person in the 8th ward, 26th division.

Vice President, Ian Cope

Ian was raised in Center City Philadelphia and Chestnut Hill. He attended N.C. State/University of North Carolina, majoring in architecture, and received a Masters in Architecture from M.I.T. He joined the Philadelphia firm of Wallace Robert & Todd and, later, his father's practice, Cope Linder Architects, where he has been the Managing Partner since the mid-1990's. He and the firm have received major awards in international design competitions. Notable projects that Ian and his firm have been involved with include the Borgata, Waterclub, and Caesars in Atlantic City; and Reading Terminal HeadHouse, Center City District Streetscape, Benjamin Franklin Parkway improvements, and Cret Café in Philadelphia. Ian has been a Spring Garden resident since 1992 and designed many of the new homes in Spring Garden, including over 30 homes on and around the 1600 block of North Street. He has served as a consulting architect/member of the Association’s Zoning Committee for several years. He lives on the 1600 block of North St. with Bridget McLaughlin and an outgoing German Shepherd named Anya.

Secretary, Rob Platten

Rob grew up in Princeton NJ, is a graduate of Hobart College, and has an MBA from the University of Virginia. He spent most of his working life as a marketing research executive with Unilever Corporation in Greenwich, Connecticut. Rob served for over 20 years as a volunteer with Common Cause in Connecticut, and was the head of the statewide organization for 2 years. He served in various positions on his college Alumni Board for over 20 years. Rob retired and moved to Philadelphia in 2006, and has been active in the Association and Tree Tenders since then. He and his wife Pat Freeland live on the 1600 block of North St. Rob can often be seen in his signature baseball cap going around the community watering and trimming trees, and cleaning up trash and debris on blocks throughout the community. He has served as an Officer and Board member of the Association and the CDC. He has also been a principal organizer of several tree plantings, civic meetings, ground breakings/ribbon cuttings, community social events, and cleanups, Newsletters, and has contributed substantial amounts of time to organizational and financial matters of the Association.

Treasurer, Cathy Elliott

Cathy and her husband David have lived on N. Sydenham St. since 2009. She has a BA in Accounting, from the University of West Florida, Pensacola, FL, 1981 and a Masters of Accounting from the University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL, 1996. She worked for Tom Brewster, CPA, Pensacola FL, staff accountant, 1981-1982, Adams Resources, Inc., Houston, TX, staff tax accountant, 1982-1984, Sherwin-Williams, Inc., Cleveland, OH, staff tax accountant 1984-1985, and the University of South Alabama, instructor of accounting, 1996-2007. She is a Certified Public Accountant and is certified to teach English to Speakers of Other Languages. Her interests include cooking, reading, traveling, tennis, dogs and a dog park, and meeting new people while walking in the neighborhood with their dog Milo. She and her husband David have been active in community projects including cleanups, crime deterrence, and dog park.

Board Members:

Newly Nominated to the Board

Board Member, Paul Hummer

Paul is a partner of the Philadelphia Law firm of Saul Ewing. He specializes in the litigation of complex civil lawsuits involving insurance and reinsurance. Paul has been named to The Best Lawyers in America List (Insurance Law, Woodward White, 2006 to the Present), and Pennsylvania Super Lawyers, 2004 to the present. He has served as a member of the Wallingford-Swarthmore School District, and on the boards of Greener Partners and St. Christopher’s Foundation for Children. Paul is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara, with highest honors. He received his JD law degree from the University of California, Hastings College of The Law, where he was a member of the Law Review. Paul and his wife Linda have lived in the Spring Garden neighborhood since 2007. They have been active volunteers in the Association, and Paul serves as a member of the SGCA Zoning Committee.

Board Member, Steve Mullin

Stephen P. Mullin is President of Econsult Solutions, Inc., an economic consulting firm in Philadelphia. Some notable clients have included Liberty Property Trust, PennDot, the Pennsylvania Convention Center Authority, Philadelphia City Council, Philadelphia International Airport, the Brookings Institution, the government of the U.S. Virgin Islands, and, currently, the President of City Council. Under the Rendell Administration, Steve served as Philadelphia's Finance Director during the City’s turnaround, and, subsequently, as Commerce Director. He is a cum laude graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy, a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard University, and was awarded an MA in economics from the University of Pennsylvania. He played club ice hockey at both universities, and has also played for the senior league at the Wissahickon Skate Club. Steve has served on a number of local boards and commissions, and has taught urban economics and public finance at several local colleges. He and his wife Janet and their family have lived in Spring Garden for nearly 20 year and have been active in community events and projects. In the winter of 2011, Steve and Janet also hosted the SGCA Christmas party - - one of the best ever - - at their restored Victorian home.

Board member, Bob Powers

Bob Powers is President of Powers & Company, Inc., a national consulting firm specializing in the preservation and conservation of historic structures. Formed in 1995, the firm has been recognized by the Urban Land Institute, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the American Institute of Architects (AIA), the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, and the Preservation Alliance of Greater Philadelphia. Bob has consulted on such notable preservation projects as the 30th Street Post Office Building, The PSFS Building, The Austin Nichols Building in Brooklyn, and the Headquarters Complex for Urban Outfitters in the Philadelphia Naval Business Center. Prior to forming his own firm, Bob worked for 12 years at the National Park Service, administering the Federal Historic Tax Credit program for 17 states. Bob and his family have lived on the 2200 block of Mt. Vernon St. for over 30 years. He has been a participant in numerous neighborhood improvement projects, most notably, compiling an extensive inventory of Spring Garden properties which (after being provided to the Historical Commission), enabled us to become a Historic District 5 years earlier than would otherwise have been possible. His work resulted in saving much of our historic fabric. Bob has also donated historical consulting services for other neighborhood projects.

Board Member, Liz Robinson

Liz was born and raised in Pueblo, Colorado. She came to Philadelphia nearly 20 years ago via Princeton University, where she studied political philosophy and ethics. She currently serves on the Princeton Club of Philadelphia Board of Governors and is active in identifying opportunities for Princeton undergraduates to work and experience life in Philadelphia through the club's Laddie Sanford internship program. Liz is a former NASD Registered Representative at Janney Montgomery Scott where her clients were institutional investors including Janus, Capital Research, Gruber McBain, and Invesco. A Spring Garden resident for 11 years, Liz can most often be found at Lifesport Fitness Center and Philadelphia Sports Clubs where she teaches and trains our neighbors and friends. She is the Founder & CEO of VitFit, LLC, a web-based fitness training solution for fitness clubs and individuals around the world, mother of a current third grader at Germantown Friends School and an aspiring gardener at The Spring Gardens Community Garden.

Board Member, Jill Wasserman

Jill and her husband Andy have lived on N. 16th St. since 2007. They bought their newly constructed home before the abutting PHAs were redone, and so were real pioneers. Jill is an artist who was trained at Moore College of Art, and obtained a Masters from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. Her work is included in both private and corporate collections. She exhibits in local galleries and maintains a studio in South Philadelphia. Jill has volunteered with Spring Garden CDC to mentor young girls from the neighborhood, and is meticulous about keeping her street clean and trash free. She also serves as a block captain for her block and is active in fostering rescue dogs, gardening, community cleanups, and other local and City-wide causes.

Continuing to Serve on the Board

Board Member, Patrick Boyle

Patrick grew up in the Kensington section of Philadelphia and attended North Catholic High School. Upon graduation, he joined Disney On Ice as a skater; toured the U.S. and Asia with Disney for 5 years; and worked at Disney World in Orlando as a skate dancer and in office jobs. Since leaving Disney, Patrick has worked for over 15 years for Fox Home Entertainment in LA, Indianapolis and Philadelphia, and currently serves as Director of Sales for Fox Home videos. While living in Indianapolis, he served on the Board of the non-profit, Indy Thrift For AIDS. He has lived in Spring Garden, on the 1700 block of Green St., since 2007. He is on the Board at Greencourt Condominiums, and has been instrumental in planning and carrying out the replanting of the condo’s interior and exterior landscaping. Patrick has served on the SGCA Board and has been active in the community, and has worked on neighborhood tree plantings, tree maintenance, trash control matters, dog park issues, social events, and cleanups, among other projects. He is currently exploring the feasibility of installing historical lighting on his block.

Board Member, David Elliott

David was born and raised in Mobile Alabama. He attended Auburn University, graduating with a BS in chemical engineering, and has an MBA from University of South Alabama. He is the Director of Manufacturing for a division of Evonik Degussa in Chester PA, which manufactures a product for green tires. (The product creates reduced rolling resistance for better fuel efficiency). He and his wife Cathy moved to Philadelphia in 2010, where they purchased a new home on the 600 block of N. Sydenham St. They have been active in community matters including serving on the SGCA Board, cleanups, dog park, and working to eliminate nuisance elements near their home.

Board Member, Patricia Freeland

Pat has lived in Spring Garden since 1981, when she bought a newly constructed home on the 1900 block of Brandywine St. Originally from Northern New Jersey, she attended University College Dublin; University of California, Berkeley; and University of Pennsylvania Law School. She worked for 25 years with the law firm of Pepper Hamilton & Scheetz and as a founding partner of Harkins Cunningham, a Pepper Hamilton spin-off. She has been active with the Association since the late 1980s and has served as President and a Board member. She is also a founder and the President of the Spring Garden CDC, which has rehabbed over 150 units of affordable housing in Spring Garden (formerly blighted PHAs) ; constructed over 40 single family market rate homes; partnered with the City to revitalize Roberto Clemente Playground; and which provides a broad array of services to community residents. She and her husband Rob Platten have a home on the 1600 block of North St. While living in California, Pat worked as a farm laborer in the Santa Clara and Salinas Valleys, and helped to found one of the first farm labor unions in the state.

Board Member, Bret Perkins

Bret is a graduate of Temple University. He served as a Vice President of Systems Services and Assistant to the President at Mercy Health. In 2001, he joined Comcast, where he managed local government affairs during a period of tremendous growth for the company. Bret was promoted to the position of Vice President, External and Governmental Affairs, at Comcast. He is a member of the Board of Trustees at Temple University and of Temple’s Fox School of Business Board of Visitors, and serves as President of the Temple Alumni Association. He has served as President of the Philadelphia Chapter of the National Association of Multi-Ethnicity in Communications, and is a member of the Board and Executive Committee of the Committee of Seventy, a Philadelphia election watch-dog organization. In 2008, Bret received the Vanguard Award For Young Leadership, one of the cable industry’s highest honors for its next generation of leaders. Bret moved to Spring Garden in 2004, and lives with his wife Donna (who has also served as an executive with Comcast) and their 2 small children on the 1600 block of North St.

Board Member, Kevin Rasmussen

Kevin and his wife Vivian Su live on the 1700 block of North St with their 7 year old and 5 year old daughters. They are both architects, practicing as the firm of Rassmussen Su. Kevin grew up in Boulder Colorado, and attended University of Virginia, where he acquired a BS and a Masters in architecture in 1993 and 1997, respectively. He and Vivian moved to the Fairmount neighborhood in 1997 and to Spring Garden in 2008 after renovating a shell on the 1700 block of North Street. They have been active in civic and community matters, including The Spring Gardens. Kevin has served as a Board member of the organization, and a consulting architect/member of the Zoning Committee.

Board Member, Allen Rubin

Allen was raised in South Philadelphia and attended Central High School, the University of Pennsylvania, and Temple Law School, where he served on the Law Review. He moved to the Spring Garden neighborhood (2144 Green St.) in 1968. In the 1970s, he and his wife Pat Cope (an accomplished artist) rehabbed a double-wide historic carriage house on the 1900 block of Brandywine St., which, at that time, was mostly an industrial block. Allen was a founding member of the Spring Garden Civic Association in the late 1960s, and has served as a Board member, Officer, and head of the Association’s Zoning Committee. He helped to spearhead the Association’s original tree planting program in the 1970s, which, over the years, has resulted in numerous street trees being planted throughout the community. He also headed up the comprehensive re-zoning of the community in 1974, and was instrumental in the founding of The Spring Gardens, our whole-community neighborhood garden. Allen has been active in community matters for over 40 years.

Board Member, Orla Treacy

Orla was raised in Blue Bell, PA, and attended the University Of Pennsylvania, class of 2008. She moved with her family to Spring Garden in 2004. Upon graduation, Orla took a management job with Day & Zimmerman. She later moved on to become the Operations Director at Cease Fire, the leading gun-violence prevention organization in Pennsylvania, of which former City Managing Director Phil Goldsmith is the President. Orla has testified at many Court sentencing hearings to advocate long sentences for criminals who use guns during the commission of a crime. She heads up the Association’s Police/Anti-Crime/Quality of Life Committee.

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