Sherry Horowitz: Leadership & Community

sherry2017Hi, I’m Sherry Horowitz. In my Letter of Introduction to you a few weeks ago, as a candidate for Croton Village Board Trustee in the November 2017 elections, I mentioned that I had been endorsed by several parties, reflecting my Democratic affiliation and my lifelong support for Working Families and Women’s Equality. I am delighted to share that since then, I have also been endorsed by the Putnam/Westchester Central Labor Body. This group’s endorsement speaks to my belief in the basic dignity of all work, in worker’s  rights to organize and negotiate for a living wage, for safe working conditions and for on the job protections.  I am thrilled with the endorsement!

In that same Letter of Introduction, I made a rather bold claim.  I said that I know how to build a strong and caring community.  Year after year at Childrenspace, preschool children come together for the first time, to leave a year, or two, or three years later as solid members of a loving school community. Certainly the Croton community is much larger, and more diverse than the Childrenspace community. But the same strong identification with a group, the same feeling of acceptance and belonging is what gives members a sense of connection and confidence. Whether we’ve lived in Croton our entire lives or are just newly arrived, whether we worship in a temple, a mosque, a synagogue or not at all, whether we are single, married, with or without kids, we all share the love of the community we call home.  We are all stakeholders in Croton’s present and future development, and have the possibility, and indeed the obligation to take part in local decisions that affect our daily living situations.

In any organization, including local government, strong, principled and compassionate leadership is key. Leaders have the responsibility to create an environment that encourages stakeholders to fully participate in local decision making. That kind of environment requires respect for all residents, tolerance of all views and the ability and desire to work together for the welfare of all. I’ve attended too many Village Board meetings where that respect and tolerance is woefully missing, where people’s views are dismissed out of hand, where opinions that differ from the prevailing majority are met with argument, condescension, or anger.  We need to bring back a basic attitude of civility, respect and good fellowship to our local government so that we are comfortable to express our cares and concerns.  Again, I would love to be a part of that process.

Respectfully, Sherry Horowitz

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