Mayor London Breed Nominates Manny Yekutiel to Serve on the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency Board of Directors
Yekutiel is a current Small Business Commissioner who owns a restaurant, café, bookshop, and civic gathering space in the Mission District
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed today announced that she is nominating Manny Yekutiel to serve on the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) Board of Directors. Yekutiel is the owner of Manny’s, a civic gathering space featuring a cafe, restaurant, and bookshop in the Mission District. He currently serves on the San Francisco Small Business Commission and is a board member of the Valencia Corridor Merchants Association.
“I’m excited and proud to nominate Manny to serve on the SFMTA Board of Directors,” said Mayor Breed. “I am confident in his ability to bring a fresh perspective to the Board and represent the needs of San Francisco small businesses and residents alike. Manny knows how to bring people together and make sure everyone has a chance to share their diverse perspectives. He’s a regular rider of public transportation in our City, and understands how critical Muni is to everyone in our City, especially our workers. In response to COVID, Manny has played a huge role in transforming Valencia Street into a space that supports our residents and helps businesses thrive, and I know he will bring that same energy and commitment to the Board.”
“I am deeply humbled and honored to be considered to serve the City I love as a member of the board of the SFMTA,” said Manny Yekutiel. “Mobility is freedom and it’s my belief that a City like ours should aim to create access to that freedom to everyone, everywhere. Our transportation system can and should do that. The relationship between our transport system, streets, workers, and small businesses has never been more important. I’ve seen first-hand how decisions made by the SFMTA, in the case of temporarily closing streets to cars, has given small businesses a fighting chance to survive this crisis. If given the opportunity to serve, I promise to be a fierce advocate for all San Franciscans and will bring my perspective and my passion as a small business owner to the Board.”
Manny’s is known for its civic events space and engaging conversations on a range of topics. Manny’s is also a restaurant whose kitchen is run by the non-profit, Farming Hope, which hires formerly homeless and formerly incarcerated individuals and trains them in the food skills needed to work in the restaurant industry. As part of Manny’s programing, Yekutiel has hosted public forums across a broad range of issues including recent conversation on COVID-19, racial justice, climate change, and transportation. He has interviewed SFMTA Director Jeff Tumlin about transportation in San Francisco, facilitated a Cycling Town Hall, and has hosted conversations on congestion pricing with the San Francisco County Transportation Authority.
The Valencia Corridor Merchants Association worked with the City to close Valencia Street as part of the Shared Spaces program, an initiative created by Mayor Breed to help neighborhood businesses to share a portion of the public right-of-way for outdoor dining and other neighborhood retail activity. Manny also served on the SFMTA 16th Street Bus Improvement Project Mitigation Task Force.
“Manny would finally be the fierce advocate small businesses need to represent us on the board of the SFMTA,” said William Ortiz-Cartagena, Small Business Commissioner. “Not only does he see things from a small business owner perspective being a small business owner himself, everything Manny does and lives is through a lens of equity.”
“Manny is an extraordinary leader who understands the importance of working within the community, for the community,” said Gina Fromer, CEO of Children’s Council of San Francisco. “He is someone who breaks down barriers for the greater good of San Francisco by bringing all of the various micro-communities together to think critically about the state of the city and beyond.”
Yekutiel was raised in Los Angeles. He comes from a long line of small business owners; his grandparents owned a grocery store in Brooklyn and his father, who emigrated from Afghanistan, had a small business in Southern California selling tablecloths. Yekutiel is a graduate of Williams College, and was a public engagement intern focusing on the LGBTQ and Tribal communities under the Obama Administration. He currently lives in the Castro District in San Francisco.