MEA is proud to recognize three of our members who are recipients of the 2023 Sloan Public Service Award. This is a prestigious recognition of the City’s best of the best public servants. Thank you for your service, dedication, and selfless care to our city.
Kenneth Cobb has been associated with the Department of Records & Information Services (DORIS) for more than 45 years. He began his career in 1977 as an intern in the Municipal Archives Division of DORIS. During the summer of 1978 he participated in an internship in the Archives under the auspices of the Urban Corps Summer Management Intern Program. One year later, in August 1979, he was appointed as a full-time Staff Analyst in the Municipal Archives. In 1988 he advanced to Associate Staff Analyst. Cobb served as Director of the Municipal Archives from 1990 to 2005 when he was appointed Assistant Commissioner at DORIS. He became an Administrative Staff Analyst in 2006. DORIS preserves and provides access to the historical and contemporary records of New York City government and provides records management services to 65 government entities and oversees the government’s transition to digital records management. In 2018 Cobb received the Archivists Round Table of Metropolitan New York outstanding Archival Achievement award. He received a B.A. from the University at Albany in 1976, and an M.A. from the Graduate School of Arts and Science at Columbia University in 1978. He is a native of Poughkeepsie, New York.
Yolanda Johnson-Peterkin is a skilled motivated leader with over three decades of experience in the justice arena. Recently appointed as the Executive Director of Housing she leads a portfolio of programs designed to increase emergency, transitional, and permanent housing options for individuals with barriers to housing. She is responsible for implementing customized systems in collaboration with community-based organizations. Yolanda also presents her expertise from the New York City Housing Authority, where she held the position of Chief of Housing and Community Activities. At the NYCHA she enhanced the groundbreaking opportunity of implementing systemic change in reunifying formerly incarcerated people with their families successfully. This unique program has been replicated and is the lead for Public Housing Authorities across the country and slated for replication by HUD.
Jennifer Lenihan was born and raised in Albany, New York. From a young age, she knew she wanted to be involved in the film industry, and she has lived her dream—she is now in her 27th year at the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME). She has held numerous roles at MOME, working up from her first job as Permit Area Coordinator at the Film Office to her current position as Senior Advisor / Assistant Commissioner liaising across the five divisions of MOME: the Film Office, NYC Media, the Office of Nightlife, the Press Credentials Office, and Creative Sector Programs and Initiatives. Her accomplishments include managing location filming requests between city agencies and production companies, encompassing countless feature films, commercials, television shows, music videos, theater and still photography projects during her tenure. She also developed the “Made in New York” Production Assistant Training Program, which offers a pathway into the industry for underrepresented communities, and significantly streamlined permit applications by moving them online. Her work has been a significant driver of economic success—in 2019, the film/media industry brought in a record $82 billion, and the number of films/tv productions for 2022 rebounded to near pre-pandemic levels. “No one currently working in City government has had a more longstanding impact on the success of the media and entertainment industry in New York City than Jennifer Lenihan,” said Anne del Castillo, Commissioner, Mayor’s Office of Media & Entertainment. “Jen is a service-oriented, thoughtful, deliberating, tinkering problem-solver with a keen attention to detail and judgment, both on the practical and political level.”