Vellonakis, Haberman, Vermeersch are appointed Westbeth directors

By Albert Amateau

The board of directors of Westbeth, the federally regulated nonprofit artists residence in the West Village, elected three new members at the end of last month.

The new directors include George Vellonakis, a Village resident and landscape architect with the Department of Parks and Recreation who designed the current plan for the Washington Square Park renovation project; Michael Haberman, former New York University director of government and community relations and current staff member of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation; and B.C. Vermeersch, director of the Greenwich House Music School.

The July 27 election brought the board to 12 members, three shy of its full complement. Ben Green, who continues as board president, noted that the board has not operated with a full complement of directors for many years. He said the board was searching for potential directors with specific skills to help the 383-unit complex survive and prosper in the future.

The remaining directors whose terms have not expired are Carol Feinman and Arnold Warwick, vice presidents; Barbara Prete, a Westbeth resident, secretary; Merble Reagon and Susan Binet, also Westbeth residents; and Steven Neil and Nan Robinson, Village residents.

The former Bell Laboratories complex between West and Washington Sts. from Bank to Bethune Sts., Westbeth was conceived in 1967 by West Village activists including Jane Jacobs and the late Rachele Wall and sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and the private J.M. Kaplan Fund as a low- and moderate-income residence for artists. Richard Meier was the conversion plan architect.