500 Riverside Drive, NYC, NY
David Goldstick, known to many in the New York City real estate world as the conversion king, made his mark as a key player in the co-op movement of the 1970’s and 80’s. As an attorney, David served in more than 800 co-op and condo conversions, giving many New Yorkers the chance to become homeowners and claim a piece of the rock. In his pro bono practice, David was an advocate for tenants’ rights and civil liberties, and as a young man traveled to Mississippi in 1963 to try civil rights cases during the voter registration drive.
When David retired in 1990, his friend Stanley Zabar, then a trustee of the Riverside Park Conservancy, suggested he volunteer as a gardener for the Park. It proved to be the perfect match for David’s interests and passions. Soon, David turned his attention to a neglected site at the southern end of the Park’s promenade, where the Warsaw Ghetto Memorial cornerstone plaque lay largely neglected.
Originally dedicated in 1947, the Warsaw Ghetto Memorial commemorates the uprising of 1943, honoring the bravery of the Ghetto inhabitants who rose up against their Nazi captors. The plaque was originally intended to serve as a keystone for a larger monument, but this was never commissioned.
Enter David, who, with his Lab mix, Sam, by his side, spent countless hours with his hands in the earth, transforming this sacred space with a beautiful, lovingly-tended perimeter garden. The plantings that David designed and installed include the copse of hydrangeas that greets visitors at the 83rd Street entrance leading to the memorial.
In 2001, the plaza itself was restored with funding from The Deedy and David Goldstick Foundation in partnership with the City. Today, through David’s determination, unyielding dedication, and hard work, the Warsaw Ghetto Memorial is preserved for the entire community. Every April 19, on the anniversary of the uprising, the Memorial is the site of a ceremony honoring those who risked and lost their lives resisting Nazi oppression and brutality.
David and his wife, Deedy, still live on the Upper West Side, in the building he helped co-op in 1968. They have three children and eight grandchildren. We honor David, an outstanding New Yorker, for his generosity, his gardening, his service as a trustee of the Riverside Park Conservancy, and his unfailing love for Riverside Park.