Meet Our New Advisers!

The Historic Districts Council would like to introduce the newest additions to our Board of Advisers               |
The Historic Districts Council’s small professional staff is directed by our dedicated Board of Directors & Advisers, whose members represent over two dozen historic neighborhoods and are drawn from the fields of architecture, education, history, marketing, law, design, public relations, journalism and community activism.

We invite you to scroll down to learn about the latest additions to our team:


ANGELAngel Ayón is the founder of AYON Studio Architecture and Preservation. He is trained and experienced as an architect and a preservationist in both his native Havana and New York City. Mr. Ayón holds a professional degree in Architecture and a M.Sc. in Conservation and Rehabilitation of the Built Heritage from Havana’s Higher Polytechnic Institute, as well as a Post-Graduate Certificate in Conservation of Historic Buildings and Archaeological Sites from Columbia University. He is a former Fitch Foundation Fellow, was the leading advocate in the campaign to rehabilitate the Mount Morris Fire Watchtower in Marcus Garvey Park, and is the Vice-President of Save Harlem Now!.


PETER_UPDATEDPeter Bray is Executive Director of the Brooklyn Heights Association, an organization dedicated to preserving the physical fabric of the neighborhood and informing and advocating for residents and businesses on matters affecting the community. Mr. Bray also serves as a Trustee of the Park Slope Civic Council and has led the committee overseeing the expansion of the Park Slope Historic District.


CHRISTIANChristian Emanuel is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with Sotheby’s International Realty, working in the office of Stan Ponte. Prior to joining the company, Mr. Emanuel was a brokerage manager and founding-level agent of a startup brokerage in Manhattan. Also active in the preservation community, he helped lead the campaign to preserve the Long Island City Clocktower and worked closely with the Historic Districts Council under the auspices of our Six to Celebrate program. Mr. Emanuel is a graduate of New York University.


DANDaniel Karatzas is a Licensed Real Estate Associate Broker with the Beaudoin Realty Group as well as a board member and former president of the Jackson Heights Beautification Group. Mr. Karatzas is the author of Jackson Heights – A Garden in the City, which chronicles the history of Jackson Heights and its unique contribution to urban planning history. He holds Engineering and Business degrees from Columbia University, and worked with the Historic Districts Council to advance the preservation of Jackson Heights through our Six to Celebrate program.


RACHELRachel Levy is Executive Director of FRIENDS of the Upper East Side Historic Districts. A graduate of the historic preservation and urban planning programs at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Historic Preservation, Ms. Levy previously worked with the Park Slope Civic Council, Landmark West!, and the Municipal Art Society. She is currently working with the Historic Districts Council to advance the preservation of Manhattan’s Yorkville neighborhood under the auspices of our Six to Celebrate program.


JOYCE_UPDATEDJoyce Mendelsohn is an educator, historian, and preservation activist. Author of “The Lower East Side Remembered and Revisited,” Ms. Mendelsohn was the first Director of Education at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, served as a consultant to the Historic House Trust, on the Board of Directors of the Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy, and is an adviser to the boards of the Lower East Side Preservation Initiative and Bowery Alliance of Neighbors. She is one of three founding member of Friends of the Lower East Side and was awarded the Historic Districts Council’s Mickey Murphy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010.


LISA_UPDATEDLisa Renz is a preservationist and architectural historian specializing in nineteenth and early twentieth century American architecture. Ms. Renz holds a Bachelor of Arts in Architectural History and Theory and earned a Master’s Degree in Historic Preservation from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Historic Preservation. She is currently the official historian and tour guide of the Woolworth Building and previously worked on the restoration of Grace Church in Manhattan.


BRIAN_UPDATEDBrian Scott Weber is a director specializing in television commercials. In addition, Mr. Weber is a member of Manhattan Community Board Four, which encompasses the neighborhoods of Hell’s Kitchen and Chelsea. Mr. Weber was also active in the effort to preserve the former Christ Church on West 36th Street in Manhattan.

Please click here for a full list of Directors and Advisers.

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The Historic Districts Council (HDC) is the advocate for all of New York City's historic neighborhoods. HDC is the only organization in New York that works directly with people who care about our city's historic neighborhoods and buildings. We represent a constituency of over 500 local community organizations.

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