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Monday, January 5, 2009

An Appetizer for 1/14/09

To give guests an idea of some of the topics that may be addressed at meetings of the Albany Roundtable, we'll offer an "appetizer" a week or so before the luncheon. Please let us know what you think! And if this whets your appetite for more civic discussion, please RSVP by Monday, 1/12 by calling 518-431-1440 (the reservations hotline of the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce) or by e-mail .

You entered Albany’s political arena as a maverick… what made you decide to seek elected office?
I was a past educator and school administrator in the City School District of Albany, as well as a member of the City’s Common Council, and in those roles, I worked diligently to ensure that the underrepresented felt like they had a voice and an advocate. So, I’d have to say what made me run for Mayor is continuing to fulfill that goal and serve the people who need it most.

Can you briefly discuss the City’s role in the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial?
The Quadricentennial celebration is going to be an exciting event here in the City of Albany. In concert with the City’s Office of Special Events, we have planned a full-day celebration commemorating our Quadricentennial anniversary in September 2009, which will feature historical re-enactors and educational activities for the whole family. There are too many details to cover here, so for more information, please visit our website at or call Special Events at 518-434-2032.

What efforts is your administration making to advance sustainability and create a greener City?
I am honored to have been one of the first signatories of the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) agreement, which not only promotes “green initiatives,” but also encourages civic leaders to share knowledge and support local governments in the implementation of sustainable development and the promotion of environmental responsiveness.

As the Albany Roundtable celebrates its 30th anniversary, could you share your vision of what the next 30 years might hold for the City and the region?
In the next 30 years, I see the City of Albany and the greater Capital Region utilizing more shared resources, greater collaboration, and a high level of cooperation to solve collective problems. I believe parochial attitudes will give way to a more sophisticated urban mindset and we will be better able to address issues related to urban living.