BY LUIS GRONDA
One of the longest-serving District Managers in New York City has decided to retire.
Community Board 9 District Manager Mary Ann Carey will retire from the position she has held for 35 years, effective Oct. 1.
Carey announced her decision in a letter dated Aug. 8, that was sent to CB9 Chairman Ralph Gonzalez.
In the four-paragraph letter, she stated her appreciation for the position as she departs.
“My time with the Board has given me pleasure and the opportunity to meet Board Members and residents of various religions’ cultural backgrounds and ethnicities,” Carey wrote. “My experiences have brought me into contact with Mayors, beginning with Mayor Wagner through our current Mayor de Blasio. In my 35 years of service to this great City, with very little exceptions, I loved every minute.”
In a phone interview on Monday, Carey said she has served as District Manager for a long time and it is time to focus her attention on other clubs she is involved with, including the Ronald Reagan Republican Club and the Sons of Italy club.
“I think its time to give someone else a chance,” she said.
The timing of this announcement was also important to her, Carey said.
Community Board 9 received a lot of attention last year due to the conflicts that existed within the board, specifically the disagreements Carey and former CB9 chairman Jim Coccovillo had while he was head of the board.
Carey said she contemplated retiring last year, but did not want to leave during that time because it would look like she was being forced out of the job.
She said she is proud to have overseen the completion of several projects within the community board during her time as district manager, in particular, the reconstruction of Kew Gardens Road from Hillside Avenue to Queens Boulevard and reopening the Forest Park Carousel.
“I’m very satisfied that I’ve done a lot for this community and this community has done a lot for me,” Carey said.
Ralph Gonzalez, the current CB9 chairman, said he is very excited for Carey and her next phase in her life.
“She deserves a lot of recognition for all the work she has done,” he said.
Councilman Eric Ulrich (R-Ozone Park) sent out a statement congratulating Carey on her retirement. Ulrich was a member of Community Board 9 prior to being elected to the City Council in 2009.
“Throughout her tenure, she played an important role in improving the quality-of-life for every neighborhood within the district. Mary Ann was a strong voice for safer streets, better public transportation, historic preservation and never wavered in her commitment to serving others,” he said.
The process to select her replacement will officially begin after her last meeting as district manager on Sept. 9, Gonzalez said. The procedure for selecting a new district manager will be announced at that meeting.
Reach Luis Gronda at (718) 357-7400, ext. 127, firstname.lastname@example.org or @luisgronda.