Kate Zidar, Newtown Creek Alliance
by Heather Senison
Jun 26, 2012 | 17614 views | 3 3 comments | 64 64 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Kate Zidar connects with an eclectic mix of peers in Greenpoint and parts of Western Queens through a shared passion for Newtown Creek.

Zidar moved to Greenpoint 12 years ago to attend Pratt Institute for its urban planning graduate program, where she found many similarities to her hometown of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – including Polish and Irish people and an industrial environment.

“I was going to be a scientist and I went to study field biology in the mountains,” she said of her time before she moved to New York, “before I got the idea that the planet was going to be fine and it was the humans the needed a little help.”

She moved to Greenpoint at a time when environmental concern was on the rise, when focus was turning from cleaning up the East River and shutting down the Greenpoint incinerator to what to do about the murky green canals that run between Queens and Brooklyn.

Now Zidar is the executive director of the Newtown Creek Alliance and co-chair of its Community Advisory Group (CAG) for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which calls for a CAG for every Superfund site.

“The common denominator between everybody in Newtown Creek Alliance is that we have this affinity for Newtown Creek, whatever it is,” she said. “We all just kind of came together out of a common almost obsession, a common curiosity about this part of our neighborhood.”

The Alliance was founded as an all-volunteer body 10 years ago, before the creek was designated a Superfund site and received federal oversight.

She said the CAG, which acts as an information line between the government and the community, works parallel to the Alliance.

The main focus of the CAG now is how it will stay together, and whether it can afford to keep its government-appointed consultant.

The Alliance is focused on solving problems revolving around the creek, and is currently calling on the Health Department to conduct a public health study to determine whether chronic illnesses in Greenpoint could be caused by toxins in the water.

The Newtown Creek Alliance's next monthly meeting will be on Thursday, June 28, in the 
Greenpoint Reformed Church at 6 p.m.

Comments-icon Post a Comment
Irene Modzelewski
February 25, 2018
Using my address illegally for years for her telephone number and committees and non profits. This is my home and will take legal action against her
Kate Z
March 30, 2018
Hi Irene, please just let me know if any old mail comes to the house. If it bothers you, helping me figure out where its coming from is a lot easier then leaving random comments on 6 year old articles.
Irene Modzelewski
March 30, 2018
Are you kidding me? You have your non profit organization still active at this address you have your committee voting still active at this address. You have had your car insured here at this address illegally for years. Your paycheck stubs come here from the museum up until a few months ago. Checks for your non profits come here still and your phone number is still under this address