By Sarah Ellen Berman
On Wednesday, January 4, a convivial atmosphere prevailed during the inauguration ceremony at town hall. Colleagues, residents, well-wishers, and family members gathered to congratulate the newly elected officials.
The inauguration came at the end of a very busy day for Congresswoman Nita Lowey. In order to officiate, she travelled directly from Albany to Chappaqua after attending town resident Governor Cuomo’s second State of the State address. Lowey was completely at home at the event. She addressed Elise Mottel’s children by name and chatted with many colleagues and friends. The opportunity to conduct the swearing in was one that she greeted with the utmost enthusiasm. “I am thrilled to be here,” she noted. After presenting a brief biography and list of accomplishments for each official, Lowey administered the oath of office individually to: County Legislator Michael Kaplowitz, Town Justices Douglas Kraus and David S. Zuckerman, Town Board Members Jason Chapin and Elise Kessler Mottel, and Town Supervisor Susan Carpenter.
The many compliments showered on the officials included mention of the fact that Justice Kraus’s recent decision in the case of People v. Alexander – which included a fatality – was affirmed by the appellate court. Justice Zuckerman was lauded for his record of not having any of his decisions reversed by an appellate court. Mottel was commended for her leadership in the revitalization of Millwood and Chappaqua.
The newly elected officials uttered words of praise in turn for Congresswoman Lowey. “You’ve come to embody for me what it means to be a public servant,” Justice Kraus related. Board Member Elise Kessler Mottel mentioned that when she called Lowey’s office to ask her to officiate, an affirmative response was immediately forthcoming.
In Lowey’s concluding remarks, the spotlight shone on the attendees. “What makes New Castle a special place is all of you,” she said. “I’m honored to be asked to swear you in and I’m honored to serve.”