City Council District 37 - Democratic Primary

      
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Preferred Candidate - Kimberly Council - Dem
Age: 41 Occupation: Reference Librarian, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Education: North Carolina Central University (BA); Pratt Institute (MS)

Kimberly Council is seeking election in order to empower her community and create a more equitable distribution of resources through the district. As a minister and librarian at a law firm, she has experience in both community organizing and legal research. She hopes to use these experiences to improve affordable housing, small businesses, and public education, which she cites as the foundation to better public safety for the community and brighter futures for children. In regards to CU issues, she supports charter reform, equality in discretionary funding, participatory budgeting, and strengthening the Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB). Although new to politics, Citizens Union believes that Council presents a strong, independent, and knowledgeable campaign and understands the importance of partnerships in achieving policy goals. Moreover, Citizens Union believes her composed and detail-oriented manner would make her a valuable asset in the City Council, earning our preference.


 

    
 


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  Rafael Espinal Jr. - Dem
Age: 29 Occupation: Member, NYS Assembly
Education: North Carolina Central University (BA); Pratt Institute (MS)

Rafael Espinal, Jr., currently the Assemblymember for District 54, is running in order to more directly impact the community. As someone who grew up in the district, Espinal emphasized the significance of creating a better environment for youth. He also cited his key issues as improving public safety, creating affordable housing, and developing better infrastructure in schools. Regarding public safety, Espinal expressed the need for a balance between decreasing gun violence and fair, just police conduct. When asked about reform issues, however, Citizens Union believed that he was unfamiliar with issues apart from his support for non-partisan elections. 
 



  
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  Helal Sheikh - Dem
Age: 39 Occupation: Public School Teacher
Education: City Tech (BA); Brooklyn College (MS)

Helal Sheikh is running for City Council to better represent the South Asian community. Although he is not involved in community and non-profit organizations, he believes he is actively serving the public through his job as a public school teacher. Moreover, he believes that average citizens, rather than those involved in politics, should run for office. Sheikh hopes to stand as a voice independent of political influences, focusing instead on creating affordable housing, increasing school funding, and supporting small businesses. While his intentions seemed honorable, Citizens Union believes that he was unaware of reform issues and lacked a full understanding of the needs of his community beyond education. 
 



Heriberto Mateo - Dem
Has not returned questionnaire
Candidate could not be scheduled for an interview