Bob Townley, Founder and Executive Director

Bob's broad experience in nonprofit management is bolstered by a Master's degree in Social Administration from Columbia University. He has worked extensively with families in New York City, including homeless families at the Henry Street Settlement's Urban Family Center. His commitment to helping families secure employment and childcare has been the driving force in his work. Bob's other love is sports and recreation. In the mid-1980s he became Youth Coordinator of Community Board One, and he started Manhattan Youth in 1986 with Lower Manhattan parents. His commitment to social activism helped him organize community meetings and services for residents including successful advocacy efforts for parks, sports leagues and schools. In the aftermath of 9/11 Bob took the lead in organizing services for the downtown community. 

Bob remains committed to social justice, reduction in conflicts and renewal energy as a path forward. He has a history in these endeavors. He subscribes to the motto "think globally, act locally".

Bob ranks as one of the longest-serving members of CB1. He is a member of the Hudson River Park Advisory Board, the Residents Advisory Board of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation and he is a founder of the Downtown Soccer and Little Leagues. A native of Coney Island who grew up in Manhattan and Queens, he has lived in Tribeca and has been a Battery Park City resident for the past 15 years. Bob enjoys hiking, music about beaches and the ocean, he loves the gym in his building, and he is a die-hard fan of both the New York Giants and New York Jets!

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Our Board of Directors

Meet our Staff Leaders
We Care 
Manhattan Youth is all about leadership. While  you'll find many familiar names when you click the links on this page, we have lots more great leaders who work with our kids every day - in After-School, Downtown Day Camps, Aquatics, sports, and all of our programs - who are role models, mentors and friends to each child.