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Revisioning Public Space


Arnold B. Chace Jr.

Arnold B. Chace, Jr. has 33 years’ experience as an investor, financial advisor, urban planner, and real estate developer. He is the Managing General Partner of Cornish Associates, Westminster Street Lofts, and Mashpee Commons, L.P.

Buff is currently a board member emeritus of Grow Smart RI and Trinity Reparatory Theater, an officer and member of the Executive Committee of the Providence Foundation, and an inaugural member of the Congress for New Urbanism.

Buff and his wife Johnnie moved back to Providence in 1985.

Steve Durkee

Steve is excited to be living, working and playing in the Downcity neighborhood. An architect, Steve founded Durkee Brown Architects before joining Cornish Associates in 2010 to help with the mission to make Providence one of the great urban places in America. When he’s not enjoying life in Downcity, he’s helping grow transit in RI as a board member of the RI Public Transit Authority. Steve was the chair of the Providence City Plan Commission for 14 years.

Joan Hertel

Joan uses her over 30 years of commercial real estate finance experience to do financial feasibility analyses for all Cornish projects and to secure financing for them. Prior to Cornish she worked for a major commercial bank as both a lender and the manager of its northeast commercial real estate department. She also worked for a national real estate consulting firm and a national multi-family developer doing in-depth market research to determine the economic viability of a wide variety of real estate projects.

Joan serves on the board of Family Service of Rhode Island. She is a former Commissioner of the Rhode Island Housing and Mortgage Finance Corporation and a former board member of the Odeum, a non-profit performing arts theater in East Greenwich, Rhode Island.

Kimberly Haskins

Kimberly, a CPA from Chicago, joined Cornish in 2005 as the controller. She oversees the accounting, financial reporting and cash management of Cornish and all of its Downcity Providence properties. Often behind the scenes, Kimberly has been a constant cheerleader for the revitalization of Downcity.

Joanna Levitt

Since 2007 Joanna has been with Cornish Associates as the director of retail leasing and marketing. Working with retailers and restaurateurs, Joanna is responsible for tenanting Cornish’s commercial properties in Downcity Providence, as well as directing the co-operative neighborhood marketing group InDowncity. As part of promoting activity in the Downcity neighborhood, Joanna organizes large-scale festivals, such as the Providence Art Festival, and helps organize the weekly outdoor movie series Movies on the Block.

Jef Nickerson

A native of Cape Cod, Jef has made his home in urban centers his enitre adult life, Boston, New York, and for the last 10 years Providence. Jef co-founded and publishes the award-winning website, Greater City Providence. He is also a board member of the Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy (Greater Kennedy Plaza) and a member of Mayor Angel Taveras’ Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission.

Jason Bouchard

Recently joining Cornish in 2014 in the accounting division, Jason handles payables and billing for Cornish and its Downcity Providence properties. A native of central Connecticut, Jason has lived in Rhode Island since earning his bachelor’s degree in historic preservation from Roger Williams University. He has developed a diverse, decade-long career in retail, tourism, and hospitality management while working for well-known companies and institutions in Rhode Island.

Outside of the office, Jason is a perpetual coffee drinker and frequents the many cafes that dot Providence. He splits his time between Providence and Newport – where he has been active in the preservation community.

Kristin Crane

Kristin Crane joined the Cornish team in 2014 as marketing assistant for the InDowncity neighborhood marketing group. She manages InDowncity’s social media outlets, as well as their daily blog and promoting various Indowncity events. She moved to Providence from New Jersey in 1999 and spent the first part of her career as a textile designer in the home furnishings industry. Prior to joining Cornish, she worked for 5 years as Manager & Director of Communications for a retail shop located in the heart of Downcity Providence, where she enjoyed watching Providence grow and change. Kristin enjoys sharing her enthusiasm for Providence with visitors and residents alike.

Tammy Reese

Tammy, a CPA, joined Cornish in 2014 as the assistant controller. She has over fifteen years of accounting experience, which has primarily been in public accounting as an auditor. Tammy prepares the monthly financial statements and assists with the daily accounting, financial reporting and cash management of Cornish and all of its Downcity Providence properties.

A native Oregonian, Tammy has lived in all four corners of the U.S. and has lived in Rhode Island now for over 10 years. She enjoys watching Providence continue to grow and become a greater city year after year. Tammy is an advocate for several local non-profit organizations and is passionate about health and wellness.