The Speaker Race: Interview with Mark Levine

Mark Levine (Photo via New York Jewish Life)

New York Jewish Life spoke with City Council member Mark Levine, who the publication says is “well-positioned to become the next (and first Jewish) speaker of the City Council.”

In the interview, Levine, who has lived in Chicago, Maryland and Sevilla in Spain, said that “once you fall in love with New York you’re hooked for life.”

I taught math and science at a South Bronx school at a time when violence and poverty were the dominant facts of life there. Afterwards I founded a credit union in Upper Manhattan so people from that community could access capital to start small businesses. I ran for City Council in Upper Manhattan, and was honored to be awarded a second term by my constituents last month. I hope to spend the rest of my life in this amazing city.

Levine noted that the Jewish community in NYC…

… is wonderfully vibrant and extraordinarily diverse, both economically and culturally. The city spends tens of millions of dollars on nonprofits serving different segments of the community, from Holocaust survivors to the elderly to cultural groups. The caucus seeks to ensure that all corners of the community are provided for. There are also security and safety concerns that are an unfortunate part of life for Jews here and everywhere. We have a responsibility to make sure the city meets those needs, which is why earlier this year I fought for a $50 million hate crimes security grant to protect non-profits from hate crimes.

Go to New York Jewish Life to read what Levine considers the most important challenges facing the city, and which uptown bakery is his favorite.

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