|Change in leadership at CB12|
|Wednesday, January 30, 2013|
Story and photos by Robin Elisabeth Kilmer
Pamela Palanque-North received a Proclamation from Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer for her service as the Chairperson of Community Board 12…
That is the number of resolutions and recommendations Community Board 12 has passed in the past four years.
Pamela Palanque-North has been the chairperson of the board for 3.2 of those years, and is stepping down on Thurs., Jan. 31st due to term limits.
This past Tues., Jan. 22 was the last General Meeting she would preside over before the newly elected George Fernández Jr. takes her place.
Palanque-North, who was appointed to the Board in 1998, did not leave without a bit of fanfare.
Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer came by the meeting with an official proclamation declaring Jan. 22nd to be Pamela Palanque-North Appreciation Day.
“It really takes a certain skill set to perform this job,” said Borough President Stringer. “You have time and time again been a voice of reason.”
The borough president is in charge of appointing half of the members of the community board.
“I look forward to working with you in a different way,” added the current candidate for City Comptroller.
And Palanque-North is not the only member on the Community Board who has earned a proclamation.
“I already have two of those!” boasted Helen Morik good-naturedly.
…and a standing ovation from those gathered at the meeting.
The incoming Chairperson, George Fernández Jr., who was elected that night, said he has learned a lot from Palanque-North, who was elected to be the board’s treasurer.
“I learned with Pamela that you have to work [with everyone], be patient, be available, be objective, and work hard,” he said.
Fernández Jr. had served as the First Vice Chairperson, and he said he felt his nomination was a natural progression, as was his assignation to the Community Board in 2009.
Fernández Jr., sees himself as a community activist, who, in 2010, founded Inwood Advocates’ Coalition for Tenant’s Rights, and currently works for the New York State Education Department servicing individuals with disabilities.
In his tenure as Chairperson, Fernández Jr. said he planned to continue the Community Board’s fight for affordable housing, advance its work on rezoning, continue to address unemployment in the area, and would advocate against violence.
He also wants to use social media to increase the dialogue between the Community Board and the community.
“The Community Board is the voice of the people,” he said.