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Harlem Empowerment Zone’s CEO Readies for Retirement

Longtime CEO Kenneth Knuckles of the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone will retire in June after 15 years with the organization. Knuckles is credited with spearheading economic and real estate development in Harlem, leveraging over $1.1 billion in private capital investments during his tenure with UMEZ.

“Ken has been such an extraordinary leader over the past 15 years—the impact of his leadership with UMEZ can be clearly seen by simply taking a look at Harlem’s economic expansion over the past decade,” said Joseph J. Johnson III, chairman of UMEZ’s board and an SVP with Goldman Sachs.

UMEZ was designated as an urban empowerment zone under federal legislation authored by Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY) and signed into law by President Clinton in 1994. “With the support of the board and my colleagues, UMEZ has played a large role in the revitalization of Upper Manhattan and will continue to do so,” said Knuckles.


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About Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny serves as Senior Content Director for Connect Commercial Real Estate, a role to which he brings 13-plus years’ experience covering the commercial real estate industry and 30-plus years in business-to-business journalism. In this capacity, he oversees daily operations while also reporting on both local/regional markets and national trends, covering individual transactions across all property types, as well as delving into broader subject matter. He produces 15-20 daily news stories per day and works with the Connect team and clients to develop longer-form content, ranging from Q&As to thought-leadership pieces. Prior to joining Connect, Paul was Managing Editor for both Real Estate Forum and GlobeSt.com at American Lawyer Media, where he oversaw operations at both publications while also producing daily news and feature-length articles. His tenure in B2B publishing stretches back into the print era, and he has served as Editor in Chief on four national trade publications. Since 1999, Paul has volunteered as the newsletter editor of passenger rail advocacy groups (one national, one local).

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