About

Burtis Consulting Group (BCG) is a leading asset in government relations, strategic consulting, and operational & logistical planning.

As a woman owned business BCG has proved it is a strong contender to the professional services industry. Our team brings many years of New York City government administration and political experience to the agency. The firm identifies municipal challenges that affect projects and implements pristine strategy-based solutions.

Specialties include community outreach, stakeholder engagement, issue advocacy, crisis management, permit expediting, pedestrian management, and event production. BCG has an extraordinarily expansive history of successful implementation and coordination of all phases of projects. We have effective professional relationships with private firms, state, federal and municipal agencies and combined experience working seamlessly with our clients project teams, vendors and subcontractors.

BCG’s creative and calculated approach to problem solving allows organizations to integrate their needs with local stakeholder considerations and municipal governments. Realizing that no two projects are the same, the team engrains itself in the local community to ensure subject matter expertise. By providing clients with a 360-degree plan that accounts for relevant local factors and potential impacts on the community, BCG helps each client explore short-, medium- and long-term planning options to ensure that a project reaches its goals. Specifically, the BCG team has extensive expertise in assisting agencies and contractors in direct response to events that have occurred in New York City.

As a certified WBE with the City of New York and New York State, BCG also assists companies and municipalities meet their M/WBE requirements for government contracting opportunities by fulfilling various roles. This includes community relations, government consulting/liaison, traffic management, training, and transportation mitigation plans.

BCG provides change management strategies and consulting to government agencies, municipalities and their contractors, as they tackle issues that impact the community’s quality of life.

Meet the Team

Cristin Burtis

CEO

Cristin Burtis

CEO

Cristin’s impressive resume includes years of combined experience working for the City of New York serving under various leaders such as Mayors Rudolph W. Giuliani, Michael R. Bloomberg and Bill De Blasio as well as starting and owning several businesses. Cristin has deep rooted knowledge and expertise of critical municipal issues and her extensive experience in government affairs, community relations, construction management, permitting, pedestrian management, transportation logistics and regulatory compliance empowers her today as a successful CEO in her very own women owned professional services firm. Over the past several years, Cristin has grown her small consulting firm to be a fierce competitor in the industry. She and her team has been responsible for carrying out various Community Liaison projects, assisting developers with complex construction and regulatory issues, and coordinating the executing the logistics and operations to implement over 500+ temporary COVID vaccination sites for the City of New York.

Cristin has also played an integral role in reshaping New York City’s permitting and regulatory requirements, logistical and operational coordination as well as health and safety plans for large scale events. As the Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Citywide Event Coordination and Management (CECM) Cristin was tasked with creating a new permitting system, implementing new policies and procedures to ensure regulatory compliance at the city’s major events. This includes coordination and communication of over a staggering 70,000 events yearly. The result of her experience, in-depth analysis of event procedures across multiple agencies, New York City adopted new processes that ensured safety and compliance at all public events.

In her tenure working for the City for over 15+ years, Cristin has been responsible for the coordination and management of many major events and served as the mayor’s liaison for Super Bowl XLVIII. Some direct results of her meticulous event planning work include Major League Baseball All Star Games, Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parades, New Year’s Eve in Times Square, and various Central Park concerts. She also carried out military events including Fleet Week, Air Force Week and Army Week. And she was responsible for assisting in the coordination of various special projects such as devising a Visitor Access Operational Plan for the New York City 9/11 Memorial and Museum and responsible for the Commodities Distribution Plan and the delivery and installation plan of the lifeguard stations, bathroom and changing facilities in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. When she promises, she delivers.

Cristin holds both an undergraduate degree and masters from St. John’s University.

Colleen Russo

Principal

Colleen Russo

Principal

Colleen spent many of her career’s early years in IT Compliance and database administration at a leading firm on Wall Street where she made impactful cost analysis driven improvements and managed relationships between the business clients and its vendors. Once her community was impacted by Hurricane Sandy Colleen engrained herself into various grass roots volunteer organizations to help build back her community. Her work as a volunteer and liaison with the community and elected officials evolved into a significant career change in her commitment to help others in need.

Colleen began a career in construction management and program administration establishing the roles and responsibilities of The New York Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery where she quickly exceled into high profiled projects with executive staff and leadership. The program utilizes a $4.4 billion budget made available by the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development’s (HUD) Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) program. Successful implementation of policy changes and program management of a variety of programs are a direct result of her contribution. Colleen was responsible in her role to oversee Housing responses to elected officials, heavily involved with constituent services and overall management and coordination of all applicant facing Program correspondence. She is a relationship-oriented Program and Project Manager experienced in Housing, Construction and Emergency Management within both private and government sectors.

Colleen’s experience in planning, execution, client-vendor relationships, and policy and operations complement her role with BCG. Her detail driven familiarity in fluid environments, experience in data analysis and work with technical platforms permit her to generate efficiencies and enhancements to processes where required. Colleen has a unique understanding of liaising on the client side of the agency while performing a vendor role overseeing various subcontractors.

An active member of NAWIC (National Association for Women in Construction), Colleen enjoys career mentoring her peers from past employers. She has recently been recognized by The NJEDA (New Jersey Economic Development Association) and featured at the Business Network for Offshore Wind, has received a Certificate of Achievement award from Senator Lanza’s office and received recognition from the local Sgt. Michael Ollis VFW #9587 for a clean site, performance, and community involvement. She has private, governmental and agency driven experience to support staff and help make decisions that drive projects to completion.

Oscar Jonas

Senior Community Liaison

Oscar Jonas

Senior Community Liaison

Oscar Jonas spent his career working within communities. Over the past several years at BCG, Oscar has been a Senior Community Affairs Liaison, where he has overseen major public works projects, build relationships and coalitions, and perform constituent services. Prior to joining BCG, he was a top aide for multiple elected officials, including two members of the New York State Senate. Oscar was selected as one of 11 Legislative Fellows with the State Senate to assist in the legislative process for the 2003 session in Albany. In 2012, the Brooklyn Independent Neighborhood Democrats (IND) selected him as one of four honorees in recognition of his dedicated service to the community.

Oscar has held prominent positions such as Senior Campaign Advisor JoAnn Simon Borough President, Brooklyn Director Community Affairs with the Office of Senator V. Montgomery, NY, Deputy Chief of Staff with the Office of Senator M. Connor to name a few. Oscar’s combined political and public relations driven experience and dedication play an integral part of his duties at BCG. His positivity, political experience, and his attention to detail and involvement with projects are a critical component of our success.

Oscar grew up in the Bedford Park section of the Bronx, and he is a graduate of Brooklyn Technical High School. Oscar earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in political science from Long Island University. He served two terms as president of the Student Government Association, working to improve the quality of life on campus.

Denise Harris

Community Construction Liason

Denise Harris

Community Construction Liaison

Denise is an experienced community liaison professional with experience in the healthcare and construction industries. She utilizes various industry system software platforms to execute the client goals, while ensuring optimum customer satisfaction. Some of her project-based experience includes working on a Department of Transportation Bridge rehabilitation project performing outreach as the project’s Construction Community Liaison. Her role is to communicate with the community and notify them of the construction and impacts to the surrounding neighborhoods as this is critical to stakeholders and community alike.

Denise has engaged with stakeholders, leaders, elected officials by representing clients as assigned for its Storm Sewer and Watermain reconstruction. She assisted in planning budgetary needs, prepared and provided advisories, weekly construction schedule, quarterly and bi-monthly newsletters to all stakeholders including city agencies and state and local elected officials. She ensured construction standards and regulations were met while working on an Astor Place reconstruction project and generated weekly and monthly reports for submission to the New York City Department of Design and Construction Office of Community Outreach and Notification. She has a customer service background and resolves routine administrative problems, answers inquiries concerning activities and operations, analyzes problems and resolves effectively.

Denise has many years of experience on high profiled projects. Her history of success on high profiled assignments includes projects such as an $18M Storm and Sanitary Sewer and Watermain reconstruction project on Foch Blvd, an $11M school reconstruction called Safe Route to School Project, a $19M reconstruction for the Lucas Street Sewer Project, a $17M reconstruction for Cooper Square and Astor Place Project at Stamford Hospital. She contributes her customer service expertise to these projects as well as her experience as a Patient Access Representative for Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Nikita Sin

Community Construction Liaison

Nikita Sin

Community Construction Liaison

Nikita has over 11 years of experience as a Community Construction Liaison. She has proven her success by minimizing the negative impact of construction on the Grand Street Trunk Water Main Project in communities like SoHo, Little Italy and Chinatown. She worked with the resident engineer and other team members to develop a full understanding of the project and its impact to the community. Nikita served as a bilingual interpreter between the construction team and the Chinese American community. She maintained a calendar of significant community events including Ethnic and Religious Festivals, special street events and school calendars to avoid conflicts with the project schedule and addressed anticipated complaints and concerns of stakeholders including residents, local business owners, schools, community boards, business improvement districts, and elected officials. Nikita competently informs the community of construction progress and works through any concerns. She developed and maintained a Neighborhood Notification Network and was responsible for notifying the community of any upcoming interruptions of water services and street closures and attending the local Community Boards District Service Cabinet Meetings.

Nikita is currently working on the The Borough-Based Jails Program (BBJP), a product of New York City’s plan to close The Rikers Correctional Center and construct new state of the art detention facilities in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx. BBJ Community Construction Liaisons work on behalf of DDC as the point of contact for stakeholders and the local community. Nikita updates her network with weekly progress reports and addresses constituent inquires by meeting in person when necessary. She creates vital presentations and holds info sessions, workshops and attends community meetings with the public to update them and address any concerns. She treats the community and stakeholders with utmost respect, answering their questions via phone, email or in-person regarding the sensitive project.
Nikita enjoys the support and multifaceted approach of working together with her peers on this project. She has mentored new Community Construction Liaisons to positively navigate issues on their projects and has received recognition for her teamwork and has volunteered as a mentor.

Terry Fitzgerald

Permit Expeditor

Terry Fitzgerald

Permit Expeditor

Terry has been an expert in the construction permitting industry for over 20+ years. She has extensive expertise in permit expediting and plan approvals for many types of projects including roadway and sidewalk closures, commercial, mixed use and residential developments, fire alarm and suppression systems to name a few. Terry has experience working with developers, construction managers, engineers as well as fire consultant experts. Terry has worked on thousands of projects throughout the five boroughs and is a subject matter expert in permitting with the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), and the Fire Department of New York (FDNY).

Terry can help you obtain a permit from the NYC Department of Transportation (DOT) if your development or construction project involve construction or placing equipment on a city-owned sidewalk, roadway, or highway such as street openings, building operations and construction activity, sidewalk repair, or canopy authorizations.

Alternatively, FDNY permits or services may be required on projects which include fire alarm modifications, fire alarm systems inspection, commissioning, and certification services, fire protection plan preparation, FDNY variances, and violation removal. She has extensive knowledge in the interpretation of applicable fire protection, helping our clients to meet fire code compliance for any project.

working pointing at blueprints

Nathan Herman

Permit Expeditor

working pointing at blueprints

Nathan Herman

Permit Expeditor

Nathan has over 18 years of experience in construction permitting. He helps our clients navigate the Department of Buildings procedures. Whether you are single homeowner preparing to perform renovations, a developer designing your new ground up, a contractor or an architect who needs help acquiring a permit or tackling a violation, rest assured your project will be expedited in the true sense of the word. Nathan’s expertise includes a broad array of consulting and filing services and his approach is custom to every client.

Crystal Berger

Crystal Berger

Program Director

Crystal Berger

Crystal Berger

Program Director

Crystal is an experienced community asset. As Program Director for the Long Island Area Council of Unitarian Universalist Congregations’ Student Activity Fund and Outreach Coordinator for the Asian American Institute for Research and Engagement, her professional background and commitments exemplify community in her work and life. A seasoned campaign consultant, former Chief to Staff to a Nassau County Legislator and Deputy District Director to a New York State Senator, she has remarkable credentials working on major campaigns and is exceptionally skilled in navigating complex issues at the intersection of government, politics, and community to deliver results.

Through her accomplished background in intergovernmental relations, public relations, and building and cultivating relationships, Crystal has honed the ability to cultivate and maintain strategic partnerships with community groups and leaders, civic organizations, educators and education partners, faith leaders, utility service providers, labor organizations, non-profit service providers, business leaders, constituents, press, lobbyists, and other key stakeholders. She’s gained years of experience in media and public relations strategy through successful social media campaigns, press relations, and major events. She has also consistently managed constituent services and directed crisis mitigation and response efforts in matters both intricate and sensitive in nature.

As an accomplished community affairs liaison, Crystal is a perfect fit for her role. She currently performs community outreach and engagement services for the New York Department of Transportation Bridge Rehabilitation Project as the project’s Construction Community Liaison. Her role is to communicate with the project team and the community, impacted area residents, businesses, and stakeholders. She maintains the construction team project timeline and updates the community of the construction and impacts to the surrounding neighborhoods and works closely with the project team to provide crucial updates in a timely and effective manner. She works with elected officials when constituent inquiries require updates. She is extremely eager, friendly, has an incredible willingness to learn and is a perfect fit for serving the community as a Community Construction Liaison. Crystal is a clear, concise communicator who strives to accomplish any task.