Abdul is one of the premier, young civic leaders in the St. Louis Region. Prior to his appointment as Executive Director at Park Central, Abdul served as City Manager for the City of Berkeley where in 2016 he was named 40 under 40 by the St. Louis Business Journal for his outstanding work in the region. In 2015, he was recognized by the St. Louis American Newspaper Foundation for his accomplishments in management in municipal government and reform. He also served the City of St. Louis in the Affordable Housing Commission and Better Family Life as Assistant Manager of Workforce Development. Abdul is a native of St. Louis, Missouri, and is married to his bride of six yeas Andrea. They reside in The City of St. Louis with their three children. He is a graduate of Northwest Missouri State University where he was honored with the Distinguished Young Alumni award and holds dual Master’s Degrees in Total Quality Management and Management from Webster University.
After joining Park Central in 2013, Susan was named the administrator for CWE South Special Business district and office manager for Park Central. Her three decades of community development experience includes co-writing legislation for creation of the CWE South SBD and serving ten years as its Assistant Director, serving as Executive Director for the South Grand Community Improvement District and the Grand Center Community Improvement District (concurrently). During her tenure at Park Central, she successfully established the Euclid South Community Improvement District in 2014 and the Bevo Community Improvement District in 2016, all while serving as the office manager, administrator for CWE South and CWE Southeast SBDs and the Euclid South CID. Susan was recently named the Interim Executive Director following the resignation of Brooks Goedeker.
Matt joined Park Central Development as a Project Manager in 2013, bringing a variety of expertise in the fields of research, economic development, transportation and urban planning. Prior to Park Central, Matt held positions at East-West Gateway Council of Governments and Washington University Medical Center (WUMCRC). He has a Master’s Degree in Urban Planning and Real Estate Development from Saint Louis University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Kansas. He currently oversees the Special Taxing District Division at Park Central, which is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Grove CID, Euclid South CID, Bevo CID, Central West End South SBD and Central West End Southeast SBD. In addition, Matt is leading various infrastructure, biking, zoning and neighborhood planning initiatives and serves as event coordinator for the annual World Naked Bike Ride in St. Louis!
Prior to joining Park Central in November 2010, Gelinda worked with the development departments of Washington University and the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. She served as Director of a small St. Louis based real estate development firm where she acquired her love of event planning. Gelinda was integral in the planning and design of numerous events including the Chouteau Cho-Down and multiple annual Independence Day Celebrations atop the recently demolished Powell Square building. Gelinda served as Vice-President of the Board for SCOSaG and assisted in the planning of two Wall Balls. She spearheads planning and management for special events in her role at Park Central.
Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Linda holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Washington University with a concentration in social and economic development and a specialization in nonprofit management. Linda joined Park Central last March 2016 and has been working closely with community stakeholders in the Central West End, Forest Park Southeast and Tiffany neighborhoods to complete a needs assessment. Linda recently expanded her capacity to work in the Botanical Heights neighborhood to identify the project needs residents would like to still see happen as the neighborhood continues to improve. Prior to joining Park Central, Linda worked with Beyond Housing’s 24:1 Initiative in St. Louis County to bring more resources to the 24 municipalities in the Normandy school district. She has over 10 years of experience in social welfare case management and counseling support in an urban setting working closely with seniors, people with disabilities, at risk youth and families, and the homeless. Additionally, her professional practices include community economic development, policy research, capacity-building for municipalities, grant-writing, program evaluations, and Geographic Information Systems GIS) research.
Leslie Deckard joins Park Central as its first office manager. Leslie has always wanted to work for a community development non-profit, and Park Central is the perfect fit, combining her passions for St. Louis and helping others. She has extensive customer service experience, and has most recently worked in the education field. Leslie earned her degree in Public Relations from Webster University and is able to utilize those skills as she administers the organization’s parking permit program, assists with the neighborhood’s development committees, manages Park Central’s website, newsletter, and social media, and maintains the overall operations of the growing office.
Cathy handles bookkeeping services for all special taxing districts and organizations.