Volume 16 • Issue 52 | May 21 - 27, 2004

Wils to face challenge at C.B. 1

By Elizabeth O’Brien

Community Board 1 member Marc Ameruso has decided to run against Madelyn Wils for board chairperson in the only contested race in the upcoming Community Board 1 elections.

Ameruso, 38, took on Wils two years ago at the last board elections and garnered only a handful of votes. But this time around the Tribeca resident says his candidacy has stronger backing and more momentum.

“I think what we need to do is put the ‘community’ back in ‘community board,’” Ameruso said.

Wils has divided priorities, Ameruso said, since she serves on so many different organizations. Wils sits on the boards of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, the Hudson River Park Trust, the Battery Conservancy and the Downtown Alliance. These positions are unpaid; she holds a paying job as the president and C.E.O. of the Tribeca Film Institute.

Wils has said that she has been named to so many boards precisely because she is the chairperson of C.B. 1 and because she has experience advocating for Lower Manhattan residents. She was traveling and could not be reached for comment on this article.

Ameruso, who works as a writer and producer in the film industry, said he would also change the way C.B. 1 meetings are run. For one, he said, he would make sure resolutions are circulated to all 50 board members several days before the monthly full-board meeting so that members will have more of a chance to ask questions and make comments before they must vote.

Ameruso has served as a member of the board for six years and as a public member for two years before then. He took pains to note that while it was time for a change in leadership, his feelings towards his opponent were not personal.

Voting will take place at the June 15 full board meeting of C.B. 1. The election is not a secret ballot and board members’ votes are a matter of public record.


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