Meet the Candidates: Island House

November 1, 2018

Lydia Tang

 

My name is Lydia Tang and I am running for the position of Island House Representative to the Roosevelt Island Residents’ Association (RIRA). I am currently the 1st Alternate Representative for Island House.  Some of my contributions have included:

 

 

  • the education and experience to help the community

  • strong relationships with many community leaders

I am committed to helping and making a difference. I have:

  • the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)

  • Hope Church

  • Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance (MSTDA) Board Of Directors/Treasurer

  • NYPL Library Advocate for Roosevelt Island

  • PS/IS 217 PTA Executive Board

I have been extremely active in a number of community organizations, including:

Please vote for me for Island House Representative to the Roosevelt Island Residents’ Association on Nov. 6. Thank you.

 

Tuesday, Nov. 6th is Election Day. We need your vote to make changes in our government to preserve and improve our quality of life on Roosevelt Island.

Adib Mansour, A.F.

 

My name is Adib Mansour, but most of you know me as “blue beard”. I have been engaging the youth on the island for more than 15 years, first as a volunteer soccer coach, then as the Program Director at the DYCD after school Beacon, and currently as th Roosevelt Island Resident’s Association’s (RIRA) Children, Youth & Education Committee Chair.

 

When I became a father, 23 and 19 years ago, I realized that youth have unlimited potential, but they need as many doors opened for a bright future as possible. Soon after I was elected as an IslandHouse representative of RIRA, four years ago, I established and chaired the Children, Youth & Education  committee with the intent to lead the youth of our Island through leadership projects and community involvement.

 

Some of my committee's community projects included: 

 

  1. Black History Celebration at the Senior Center: young females recited original poems, performed original dances and served food to seniors. 

  2. Mother’s Day Celebration involving numerous youth Island organizations such as the Main Street Theatre, the Girl Scouts, and others. Assemblywoman Seawright presenting four mothers with citations for Exemplary Mother / Grandmother. 

  3. The current Time Capsule project has enabled numerous students to research and interview Island politicians - Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright, Council Member Ben KallosRIOC President Susan Rosenthal, Island internist Dr. Jack Resnick, Public Safety Department Chief Jack McManus, NISI owners (Kaie and Alex Razaghi), and Piccolo Trattoria owner Oscar Molina. 

  4. Music Is All Inclusive Concert, in conjunction with the Roosevelt Island Disabled Association, this celebrated the inclusive history of Roosevelt island. We also showcased the young musicians’ talents by matching them with a professional chamber orchestra. Musical teacher Ms. Shuang and I wanted our students to know that you can achieve anything you want. All it takes is a dream, a will, and a friendly nudge!  

 

Other building specific projects included testing the drinking water in Island House when a story broke out about lead in the school’s water fountains. We tested in several apartments and submitted the report to RIRA with good results. 

 

It has  been my honor to raise my children in a community that is dedicated to ensuring equality and respect to all. 

 

I am running again for RIRA to continue my work for the youth and young adults of the island. My intent is to continue leadership projects and start connecting the youth with national and international mentors and celebrities. I also want to add a “Comments” box in Island House and encourage other RIRA Council Members so that RIRA will be the residents' go-to resource.

 

Remember that Island House requires three representatives, hence the reason I am running with two fantastic island and building advocates: Rossana Ceruzzi and Lydia Tang. Please go to vote in the vital National midterm elections and visit RIRA’s table to vote for your buildings’ representatives.

Frank Farance

 

Island resident for 38 years, RIRA Common Council for 22 years and served as: Island House representative, RIRA President, Planning Committee Chair, Communication Committee Chair, RIRA Secretary, Public Safety Committee member, Island Services Committee member, Constitution and By-Laws Committee member, Public Purpose Funds Committee member, Government Relations Committee and Maple Tree Group member.  I'm a parent of 16-year old twins.

 
Efforts I've initiated, led, or helped significantly:

  • Water/Air Quality: I investigated contaminated water (carcinogens) at parks' drinking fountains ― already a half-year project, and still ongoing.  I led RIRA's air quality effort during the Cornell construction, and I was able to bring all the stakeholders to the table: Cornell, RICC, and experts.

  • Emergency Response: Member of RI's CERT team since 2006, staffed Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Irene shelters, and staffed Hurricane Maria service center (Harlem) and worked at City's warehouse moving donations, supplies, and materiel to Puerto Rico.  This summer, I developed with RIOC a drill and demonstration for flood mitigation for Roosevelt Island: quick-fill dams (8 minutes fill time) that can be deployed around the Island to protect buildings and infrastructure from hurricane flooding.  I participated in the City's Dept. of Planning workshop on flood mitigation (sponsored by Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer), analyzed updated flood planes for Island's buildings.

  • Affordability and Housing: I've helped preserve affordable housing, including the Island House conversion (a 15-year effort led by a half-dozen people), and advocating strongly for Westview's conversion, which was stalled at RIOC.  I opposed Gristede's withdrawal of the WIC (women, infants, and children) program, got Manhattan Park Pool to end its discriminatory pricing.

  • Finances: I've helped reveal the Island's finances, including getting RIOC to increase their budget look-ahead from 5 years to 15 years (which revealed RIOC financial problems). I've given the community insight on the ground leases - their strengths and weaknesses.  I exposed RIOC's billion dollar debt/liability, which is an issue that all of us need to work on as it will soon affect our housing costs (whether rent or maintenance, whether subsidized or market-rate).

  • Health/Safety: I took "Rat Academy" training (City's Department of Health), reported the severe rat infestation at PS/IS 217 (250-rat colony), and got the City to teach the Rat Academy on the Island for residents and building/merchant staff. Reported multiple health and security problems at the Motorgate "vomitorium".  Reported safety problems with helix reconstruction (immediately fixed). 

  • Public Safety: Worked on many issues over the years, including improper recordkeeping on vertical patrols, building safety, park/promenade safety. I seek to balance the Rights of the Individual (no gratuitous arrests) with the Rights of Society (Quality of Life issues, such as late-night noise).

  • Youth: I have worked with 1000+ youth over the past 15 years, including personally teaching, mentoring, and supporting 200 Island youth. For a decade, I've taught STEM to Island youth in weekly classes (robotics, Minecraft, SAT prep, etc.).

In the 2018-2020 term, my focus is (1) expanding RIRA to include all the Island's residents, such as Coler and Cornell, (2) giving merchants a voice, (3) improving Island's infrastructure, (4) improving RIOC's communication and responsiveness towards community needs. I will continue to stand up for the residents and their concerns, continue to invest time/effort in our community, and (as always) Speak Truth to Power.

Also running: Rossana Ceruzzi

 

 

 

 

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