After growing up in Ireland and starting his career in London, John Riordan and his wife, Anne, packed their bags and moved to New York in the late 80’s.
“Crack cocaine,” said Riordan. He wasn’t joking; Anne, a nurse specially trained in treating infants born addicted to the drug, got a job in New York to help hospitals in need.
John followed. Back in London, he was working for General Foods. But stateside, family introduced him to opportunities with the building service union. Riordan switched industries and started taking classes, working his way up through the ranks.
Now, after 25 years at his current building, Riordan is being recognized as Building Manager of the Year. He manages a “fabulous team” of 13 staff members, 51 apartments and 6 retail spaces at 14 East 75th Street.
Riordan loves working with people, and knows how to make them laugh. When asked what the best part of his job was, he replied: “The commute. I live in the building, so it’s about 11 feet.”
And the worst part? “Living in the building. I’m only about 11 feet from my office,” he said with a smile.
Over the course of the pandemic, work has slowed in some ways, and gotten busier in others. There are fewer people going in and out of the building, but Riordan and his team have kept busy focusing on sanitation and cleanliness to keep staff and residents safe.
Riordan is most grateful for his continued good health, and the health of those around him.
“We’re trying to stay ahead of this extraordinary time,” he said.
The residents and staff at 14 East 75th are “truly wonderful people,” said Riordan. It’s the only home his kids have ever known for that exact reason. His first son, Mark, was just 8 months old when Riordan was hired at the building. Then fourteen months later, identical twins Peter and Michael came along.
“A 22-month-old and twin newborns was chaotic but thankfully they have a brilliant Mom,” said Riordan. 25 years later, he and Anne are quickly becoming empty-nesters.
When he isn’t working, Riordan likes to head upstate where he enjoys gardening, brewing his own craft beer, and snowboarding with the kids.