The Congel Family, led by Mark Congel, has made a donation commitment to the GUDC for $50,000

July 27, 2016

We are very grateful for this donation to the GUDC. The Congel's are interested in expanding the GUDC capabilities and programs towards new mixed use and apartment developments.

The new Congel endowment is to help us to retain an interim Associate Director, Mike Rotella. Mike is a Syracuse University alumnus, a disability blogger, and founder of a popular local media website. Prior to joining the GUDC, Michael worked with Granite Development as an accessibility consultant on a major residential project. He provided insight and solutions for access and inclusion for people of all ability levels during this project's development. As a person with a mobility disability, Michael has firsthand knowledge of the challenges all people face in built environments. He hopes to use this as a starting point for the GUDC’s future growth. Not only does Michael bring a unique perspective, but also he brings an ability to turn that perspective into real world inclusion solutions.

In addition, Diana Foote graciously has agreed to become interim Executive Director of the GUDC, to facilitate the organization’s planning, financial, and logistical growth. Diana has served as Business Manager for the Burton Blatt Institute (BBI) at Syracuse University since 2008 and as Director of Operations since 2011. A 1991 graduate of SU’s Whitman School of Management, Diana served as an accountant with Coopers & Lybrand LLP (PwC), Dermody Burke & Brown CPAs LLC as well as for private and public sectors before coming back to Syracuse University. In public accounting, she worked with clients in construction and related accounting systems.

In related news, we are continuing to work with our Ecuador partners, Maria Teresa Donoso, to introduce GUDC certification processes into the United Nations 2016 Habitat III Project in Quito this fall. More to come on this important development!