Once more down Grand Street!
By Nicole Robles
On Tuesday July 5, Grand Street Business Improvement District’s (BID) former Board Chair, Fred John Moehring passed away after a long battle with cancer. Moehring is survived by his wife Serena, daughters Lisa and Rachel, and his grandchildren Stephen 19, William 16, and Emily 11.
Fred Moehring was born in Greenpoint, Brooklyn in 1939. After two years of military service, Moehring worked 35 years for Syska Hennessy Group, Inc. as a senior plumbing and fire protection engineer; his projects included high rise buildings and hospitals. After retirement, Fred committed full-time to the management of his properties. As a property owner, Moehring was fair and generous to both his residential and commercial tenants. He especially understood the struggles of business owners and charged rents that they could afford to make a living.
Moehring lived on Grand Street as a newlywed for five years and was one of the first members of the Grand Street Business Improvement District. In 1985, led by St. Nicks Alliance, community leaders and property owners including Moehring created the Grand Street BID. A nonprofit economic and community development organization, .the mission of the Grand Street BID is to create a vibrant commercial district and improve the community’s quality of life. Moehring was also instrumental in establishing the BID as an independent organization.
“Fred was very creative and had a great vision for Grand Street,” said Artineh Havan, Grand Street BID’s Executive Director. “He imagined Grand Street with vibrant, visible storefronts and clean, tree-lined sidewalks. He had a remarkable eye for detail and always looked for creative ways to enhance the appearance of Grand Street.”
The current Board Chair of the BID Lori Raymer echoed this: “Fred Moehring’s vision of a bustling Grand Street as a commercial corridor was an inspiration to us all, and we will continue to build on that vision as a way of honoring and remembering Fred.”
Moehring brought a pragmatic leadership style to the BID and was often a catalyst for change. After noticing the aesthetic and safety issues created by sidewalk ATMs, Moehring recommended that they should be prohibited from being placed on the sidewalk. With the support of former Councilwoman Diana Reyna this recommendation became a citywide law, benefiting commercial districts throughout the City. Moehring also dedicated many volunteer hours to the BID as bookkeeper and kept meticulous financial records for the organization.
He was a very active member on the Executive Committee as Board Chair up until he resigned due to his illness, just a few weeks before his passing.
Fred impacted the lives of many Grand Street community members as well as many individuals who had the opportunity to work with him. “Fred hired me, and I will always be grateful to him for giving me the opportunity to serve the Grand Street business community. I have learned so much from him,” said Havan.
One of the BID’s former board members, Mimi Hernandez, remembers, “He truly was the Grand Street BID!”
Moehring’s unwavering dedication and over 30 years of hard work will not be forgotten. “Fred will be greatly missed and leaves an impressive legacy of civic engagement and innovation,” said Havan.
“He really loved Grand Street,” Serena, Fred’s wife, told Havan. After the funeral, the procession drove down Grand Street one last time at his request.