COMMUNITY SERVICE: Dominic Stiller became president of the Dutch Kills Civic Association, which was started in 1979 to promote awareness of the Long Island City area, in January. “The organization’s goals are to improve local quality of life for residents, commuters, workers and all visitors to our area.”
BACKGROUND: Stiller was born in Canada and made the move to Queens when he was two years old. Along with being president of the Dutch Kills Civic Association, he is also the owner and manager of DSENY Engineering Services, a safety and structural engineering firm of 12 employees, also located in Dutch Kills in Long Island City.
“As well as renovating our limestone townhouse in Dutch Kills, I have also recently completed the design and construction of a full mechanical and structural interior and exterior restoration of the Dutch Kills Centraal, an existing bar/restaurant located in the heart of Dutch Kills, at the corner of 29th Street and 39th Avenue.”
FAVORITE MEMORY: Although not one particular memory stands out, Stiller said he has an overall love for his Dutch Kills community.
BIGGEST CHALLENGE: “My biggest challenge is convincing small scale Queens owners and developers to think broadly, think outside their own property lines, and realize that long-term decisions yield very different conclusions than short-term decisions. In addition, it has been a challenge to convince local businesses that the business community and the residential community have more things in common than in opposition, we all spend a significant portion of our lives in this neighborhood, and it’s in everybody’s best interest to improve the local quality of life.”
INSPIRATION: “This is a neighborhood of rapid change. My wife Jean and I realized that if we do not get involved in the direction that the neighborhood goes in, then we will have no reason to complain if it goes places we don’t want it to. She is a real star of queens, tending tree pits, planting flowers, and cleaning up litter up and down the avenue.
She is also working with the staff of our wonderfully supportive and involved local elected officials, Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer and State Senator Michael Gianaris. The goal is to have the Department of Transportation install many traffic calming devices to slow down the vehicular traffic which races through our neighborhood, causing frequent accidents, and some recent fatalities. She has started an on-line petition at dutchkillslic.com which, once complete, will be presented to DOT with a request for curb extensions, more stop signs and lights, remarking of cross walks on many avenues and speed bumps.”