Christina Smith

Executive directoR

My passion for Bridgeport, Connecticut stems from the happiness I remember growing up as a child here. I was born in in the city and lived here until I was twelve when my mom moved so that we could be in a better place. As the adult, she was concerned about the many issues the city was then facing in the late 80s, as a child, I only remember how great things were. I had lots of friends, I loved school, Christmases were fun, and generally from my perspective, everything was great. 

Now as an adult myself, I understand the concern my mom had for me growing up in Bridgeport. I see the issues she saw then so long ago and that still face the city today. I have had the fortune to live in many other places since my childhood, New York, San Francisco, and London to name a few, but Bridgeport is my home and I am happy to be working to make my hometown better. I am especially happy to be working with youth so that their memories and experiences in the city are as happy as those that I remember. With the academic experience I have gained from Princeton (B.A. in Economics) and my most recent studies in how to better cities (M.Sc. in Urban Regeneration from University College London) and how cities can reuse their old buildings for new purposes (M.A. in Historical and Sustainable Architecture from New York University), I am ready to apply that knowledge to my hometown. My goal is to be part of making Bridgeport a place that people love to be!


Tanner Burgdorf

Program Coordinator

Watching plants grow is one of my greatest joys. Even as a kid, when I only had a little cactus to call my own, I loved it. I studied at the University of Connecticut, where I earned a degree in Landscape Architecture. Though I had the opportunity to work in the industry as a residential designer, I knew that I wanted to connect and work with people ... I went on to work for an industrial food corporation but left because I wanted to pursue a job that aligned more with my values. I believe that gardens can bring neighbors together and foster a community’s mental and physical health.

More about tanner here and here and here and here and here and here....