Letter: Grangenois-Thomas is an experienced leader
February 28, 2019 at 9:07 a.m.
In the over 20 years I have lived in Port Chester, there have been several people I have looked to for leadership at critical junctures in my life and the life of our community. One of the most important people in that cohort is Joan Grangenois-Thomas.
Last year, when my son got his driver’s license, I was worried about what might happen if he were ever pulled over by the police. I found out Joan had recently reached out to Chief Richard Conway and that the two of them were organizing an event called Coffee with a Cop. I attended and was able to have a very informative and, importantly, two-way conversation with the chief and one of his officers about the prevalence of racial profiling in Westchester as well as everything Port Chester police are doing to make sure it doesn’t happen here. I came away from that meeting extremely grateful that Joan had opened a means by which the community could engage in productive dialogue with our local police force. (Coffee with a Cop is a reoccurring event and I urge everyone to attend.)
Joan helped open pathways for dialogue again, most recently, after the horrific synagogue massacre in Pittsburgh. Speaking from the pulpit to and for those of us who had gathered at Congregation KTI for an interfaith vigil, she expressed warmly and eloquently what so many of us who are not Jewish wanted to say to our Jewish neighbors: we love you and stand with you. I could cite numerous other examples of Joan’s presence in our town’s public life, but hopefully these two make the point loudly and clearly that in terms of deep knowledge about our community, experience advocating for minority and other disenfranchised groups, and the ability to empower all of us to join the various conservations about our town’s future, Joan Grangenois-Thomas would be an excellent addition to the Port Chester Board of Trustees. I will be voting for her on Mar. 19.