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June 5th, 2013

Mejía announces City Council run for Ward 1

Karen Mejia

NEWBURGH - Karen Mejía, the former Deputy District Representative for Congressman Maurice Hinchey, has officially announced her candidacy to represent Newburgh’s newly created Ward 1, which encompasses the city’s large East End Historic District and waterfront.

"Newburgh’s East End is and should be the crown jewel of this city. It’s potential is evident everywhere you look. It’s in the beauty of its historic buildings and breathtaking waterfront. It’s in the commitment of its colleges, hospital, churches and small businesses to improving the lives of Newburgh residents. And it’s in the passion and resilience of its hardworking residents who never, ever gave up on the potential of this great city," says Karen Mejia. "These are the city’s most important and vibrant assets. They must be honored, cared for and cultivated if we are to move this city forward."

Unfortunately, decades of urban renewal, mismanagement and neglect have taken its toll on this part of the city, leaving behind crumbling buildings, sidewalks and streets. "We can and must do better," argues Mejia. "I am committed to making Ward One number One in terms of the Quality of Life for all of its residents. That means we need community policing to make our streets safer. We need to repave our streets, sidewalks and crumbling infrastructure. We need to reclaim our vacant buildings and hold slumlords accountable. And we need an economic development strategy that promotes innovation, tourism, and mixed use, mixed income development along the waterfront in order to create better housing and job opportunities for all of our residents."

The daughter of Salvadoran immigrants, Ms. Mejía’s family migrated to the United States during the upheaval caused by Central America’s civil wars in the 80’s. "As a child, we left El Salvador with nothing but a few bags and a dream for a better future." Today, Ms. Mejía is an Ivy-League graduate from Brown University, with a Masters Degree from New York University in Latin American History. She currently serves as the Director for Community Partnerships at the Greater Newburgh Partnership; serves as a commissioner on the Human Right’s Committee in the City of Newburgh; serves as a board member of the United Way of Dutchess-Orange Region; serves as a board member of the Newburgh Preparatory Charter High School; serves as a board member of Habitat for Humanity of Greater Newburgh; serves as a board member for Safe Harbors of the Hudson; serves as a board member of Girl Power; serves as a board member of Independent Living Strategy Group, Inc.

Ms. Mejia believes that Newburgh’s best days are still ahead of it. "I am running for Newburgh City Council because I believe that Newburgh and all of its citizens deserve better," says Ms. Mejia. "Dr. Martin Luther King once famously argued that the arc of history may be long, but in the end, it always bends towards justice. But he also recognized that the arc does not bend all by itself. The arc of history is moved by the passion and commitment of many hands, hearts, and minds working together to advance the greater good in defense of our collective dignity and humanity. That is my vision for Newburgh. And that is why I am running for City Council."

5 / 5 (5 Votes)

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