Community activist Richard David has announced his candidacy for the New York State Assembly.
David will run for the vacant seat in District 31, which encompasses the southeast Queens neighborhoods around JFK Airport: Arverne, Brookville, Edgemere, Far Rockaway, Hammels, Richmond Hill, Rosedale, South Ozone Park, Springfield Gardens and Wakefield.
The position was vacated after former Assemblywoman Michele Titus was elected as a Queens Civil Court judge earlier this year. Titus has served in the Assembly since 2002.
Governor Cuomo is expected to declare a special election in the next few days. The regularly-scheduled primary is set for June 23rd.
David has lived in southeast Queens for 25 yeas, and is currently a district leader for Assembly District 31.
He spent 10 years working in government, and was at one point one of the youngest members of his local community board.
He co-founded a youth-led social justice organization, and led the nonprofit desk of a private government relations firms.
David is also an adjunct history professor at York College.
A new affordable industrial center has opened in Ozone Park, thanks to funding and support from state agencies.
Last week, the nonprofit industrial developer Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center (GMDC) marked the site’s opening along with Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul and a slew of government officials.
The 85,000-square-foot facility will provide affordable space to more than two dozen local small and mid-sized manufacturing businesses.
The 113-year-old factory site was renovated with $11 million in investments from the state.
The industrial center is spread over three buildings and spans an entire city block. It will be leased to woodworkers, artisans, custom fabricators and other entrepreneurs.
Officials estimate it will provide about 80 jobs at the facility.
On Tuesday, Councilman Adrienne Adams hosted a hair donation event where young people donated their locks to a local nonprofit.
Thanks to free haircuts and styling from Aracelis Unisex hair salon, every young person was able to donate hair to Butterflies by Blaq, which provides high-quality wigs to children with medical conditions.
The group was formed in 2012 by Erna Blackman, a former volunteer at American Cancer Society, to assist children coping with hair loss.
At the event, Saaya Kanhoye, 14, donated 14 inches of her hair. Her 9-year-old sister, Shaila, donated 35 inches of hair.
“Hair donors like Shaila and Saaya are important to us because longer hair donations are the building blocks of wig creation,” Blackman said. “Most of the girls that request our services now want longer hair. Although we accept and are grateful for 10 inches, the desired lengths are 12 inches or more.
“We love it when we meet young people who feel the need to give back,” she added. “People helping people makes the world a better place.”
Two thoroughfares in Richmond Hill are being co-named next year to pay homage to the neighborhood’s growing Sikh and Punjabi communities.
Councilwoman Adrienne Adams announced last week that 101st Avenue between 111th Street and 123rd Street will be renamed “Punjab Way.” Punjab is the region in India where Sikhism originated.
In addition, the two-block stretch on 97th Avenue from Lefferts Boulevard to 117th Street will also be known as “Gurdwara Street.” A gurdwara is a Sikh place of worship.
We have a beautiful multicultural mosaic not only in my district but the city as a whole and believe that it should be celebrated,” Adams said. “It is important that diverse communities see themselves and their varying cultures represented in the landscape.”
According to Annetta Seecharran, executive director of Chhaya CDC, Punjabi and Sikh communities have been part of Richmond Hill for over half a century.
“From construction sites and yellow cabs, to hospitals and our government, Punjabis and Sikhs help run this city, and are part of its fabric,” she said. “We are excited to see that our community is finally being represented for its contributions.”