BY BROOKE SMITH
Personal Background: Michael Feiner was born in the Bronx. He is a father to Andra Dalla, 39, an advertising attorney for L’Oréal, and Jess Feiner, 33, employee of United Parcel Service. He is married to Eileen Feiner, a retired third-grade teacher and sole proprietor of Feiner Finds, an interior decorating business.
Professional Background: Michael Feiner attended Marie Curie Junior High School and Bayside High School. He later went on to graduate from Queens College with a major in English and minor in education. He taught physical education in Woodside from 1972 to 2003 as well as junior high school English and elementary school science.
In 1958, Feiner moved to Bayside Hills, where he soon noticed that upon heavy rainfall, the neighborhood would suffer severe flooding. Water levels would rise, causing sewers to overflow, manholes to pop up and lampposts to tip over. The danger the flooding caused for residents prompted Feiner to take action. He began going around the neighborhood with petitions to enact change. This led to his membership of the Bayside Hills Civic Association. He made his way from a member of the board of directors, to vice president, to his current position of president.
Biggest Accomplishment: As president of the Bayside Hills Civic Association, Feiner made the Alley Greek Oakland Ravine Project first on his to-do list. This would include redirecting stormwater out of the town to prevent flooding. A major accomplishment was made when the project’s last finishing touches were recently completed, bringing a stop to the flooding that would often cause homes to tilt on their foundations.
Feiner is also motivated and proud of the relationship he has with the NYPD. “Our rapport has never been better,” he said/ They work with Feiner and the civic association to maintain security for all of their events. He was even invited to take part in Police Academy courses and still attends regular meetings. His good relationship with elected officials and NYC agencies is also an accomplishment. This, in turn, has led to their cooperation and response to Bayside Hills’ concerns.
Biggest Challenge: Feiner’s biggest challenge now is the ongoing effort to maintain the appearance and quality of homes in Bayside Hills. Maintaining the reputation and identity of the neighborhood has also proved challenging. Bayside Hills’ name was becoming lost, often being overlooked by the postal service as Flushing or Oakland Gardens. Feiner fought with the aid of Congressman Anthony Weiner, Congresswoman Grace Meng and Postmaster William Rodgers to ensure the identity of Bayside Hills will not be forgotten. These changes were even pushed on databases including Google Maps.
Motivation to Contribute to Community: Feiner is motivated by the supportive team and relationships he has with those around him. “I live in a wonderful neighborhood and I have a great board of directors that work in support of what I believe in,” he said.
Feiner is currently planning the Holiday Lighting Ceremony the Community Board 11 holds annually on Bell Boulevard on Dec. 6.