Candidate Profile: Mark Levine (D)
Mark Levine (D)
Political Party: Democrat, Working Families
Office Seeking: New York City Council, District 7
Opponents: Alicia Barksdale (CD 7) Joyce Johnson (CD 7) Mark Otto (CD 7) Manuel Lantigua (CD 7) Zead Ramadan (CD 7) David Sasscer-Burgos (CD 7) Luis Tejada (CD 7) Ruben Dario Vargas (CD 7)
Currently: District Leader
Previously: Executive Director of The Afterschool Corporation, Founder of Neighborhood Trust Federal Credit Union, Executive Director of Teach For America - New York
Education: Haverford College (BA), Harvard University (MPP)
Endorsements: Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, Manhattan BP Scott Stringer, Congressman Jerrold Nadler, Former Governor David Patterson, NYS Senator Adriano Espaillat, Councilmembers Melissa Mark-Viverito, Ydanis Rodriguez, and Dan Garodnick, Assemblymembers Denny Farrell and Gabriela Rosa, UFT, 1199 SEIU, SEIU 32BJ, UFCW Local 1500, Mason Tenders, HTC, CWA Local 1, CWA Local 1180, UFOA, UA Local 1, Tenants PAC, 504 Democratic Club; Citizens Union; Metallic Lathers & Reinforcing Iron Workers Local 46; NYC Fire Marshals Benevolent Association
Mark Levine is a Democratic District Leader and non-profit executive in Upper Manhattan. He has been endorsed by much of New York’s political establishment, including local elected officials, labor unions, the Progressive Alliance Caucus, and the Working Families Party. He is fluent in Spanish.
About the Candidate
A resident of Washington Heights, Mark Levine has been an active community advocate. Mark has served as Democratic District Leader in Northern Manhattan before going on to find the Barack Obama Democratic Club of Upper Manhattan in 2009. He also served as Chair of the Traffic and Transportation Committee of Community Board 12. Mark founded the community development credit union in Upper Manhattan, Neighborhood Trust.
Mark began his career as a bilingual teacher in the South Bronx before going on to serve as Executive Director of Teach for America (New York) and as Executive Director of the Center for After-School Excellence. He holds a B.A. in Physics from Haverford College, and a Master’s in Public Policy from Harvard University.
Key Campaign Issues
Education: Supports expanded school option, smaller class sizes, universal pre-K, quality after-school programs, and a greater say for parents in their children’s schools
Affordable Housing: Supports the repeal of vacancy decontrol, inclusionary zoning, and NYC oversight over rent regulation laws
Transportation: Wants to see improved subway and bus services, safer streets for bicyclists, and better transit access for those with disabilities, and calls for new strategies to increase funding for mass transit and reducing traffic congestion
Environment & Parks: Against “hydrofracking” and supportive of measure that will protect parks, the Hudson River waterfront and New York’s watershed.
Worker Rights and Justice: Believes all workers should be “treated fairly, work safely, earn a decent wager, and have the chance to rise up the economic ladder.” Supports paid sick days and believes the wealthiest should pay more in light of growing economic inequality.
Public Safety: Supports reform of NYPD’s stop and frisk policy and is against unlawful surveillance of Muslim communities or other groups exercising their First Amendment rights.
Seniors: “As a former member of the Committee on Aging of Community Board 12, Mark has advocated for preservation of City funding for our district’s vital senior centers and home meal delivery programs.” He also supports an expansion of Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE) program and believes greater attention must be directed towards Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities.
Small Businesses: Supports more aggressively advanced contracting to minority and women owned firms, and in favor of eliminating “outdated” and “over-burdensome” regulations
Fairness: Supports LGBTQ rights, including marriage equality, and immigrant policies like the DREAM Act
Arts & Culture: Supports an increase in funding of non-profit cultural organizations
Government Reform: Supports same-day voter registration, early voting, and replacement of the Board of Elections with a non-partisan agency along with participatory budgeting so that citizens can determine the allocation of discretionary funds in the city’s budget