The Board of the Mt. Beacon Incline Railway Restoration Society recently appointed two new trustees that will further strengthen the organization’s ties to the region and underscore its commitment to making this initiative a reality. “Gretchen Dysktra and Adriene Conrad are wonderful additions to our board, and I know both will help further our goals and mission” says Jeff McHugh, the recently-elected President of MBIRRS. “With Gretchen’s deep governmental experience working under NYC’s Mayor Bloomberg, combined with her long list of accomplishments developing foundations and non-profits, we have someone on our board who can really help connect the dots.” McHugh continues: “with Adriene we gain a regional business leader who is committed to both her community and local charities, and has strong ties to the Walkway Over the Hudson”.
Both Dysktra and Conrad join the board as the organization works toward further developing its business and operational plan using the $100K Capital Project Grant awarded last September. “It is encouraging to see individuals like Gretchen and Adriene see the potential in this project and help it move forward,” says McHugh. “It validates the project’s vision and all the hard work this all-volunteer organization has done over the years.”
Gretchen currently lives in Cold Spring and is an active writer. Before moving to the Hudson Valley in 2013, she was the New York City Commissioner of the Department of Consumer Affairs - the city’s leading consumer advocate and small business regulator - under Mayor Michael Bloomberg. In the 1990s she was at the forefront of the revival of Times Square as the first President of the Time Square Alliance. Gretchen served as the founding President and CEO of the National 9/11 Memorial Foundation during its first year. She has served on several boards and has had a long career working with private philanthropic organizations, foundations and civic institutions, including both the Edna McConnell Clark and Rockefeller Foundations.
Adriene is a Poughkeepsie native, and both she and her 17-year-old son Brandon are longtime residents. For 25 years she has been the President of North River Abstract Corporation, in addition to her work as a Steward of the Walkway Over the Hudson. She supports and sponsors many local charities such as Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation, Children’s Home of Poughkeepsie, Food Bank of the Hudson Valley and Vassar Brothers Medical Center Foundation.