MEET MARI

New Leadership Delivering Tangible Results for Our Community

A lifelong resident of North Rockland, with roots that go back many generations in Stony Point, I have always taken steps to make my community better at every opportunity.  My entire life has taken me down the path of advocacy, challenges and grass roots action. Most of my successful ventures in life have required cooperation, effective communication, and tough judgement calls. Our current politicians seem to be more focused on saving their own skin than reaching out to those less fortunate. I’ve worked along side of community members as well as members of the “system” that we all belong to whether we like it or not, to provide assistance to those who don't know how to stand up for themselves. I’ve assisted law enforcement with crisis calls for community members in need, I’ve accurately and effectively coordinated with medical professionals and attorneys. I’ve been a school liaison and parent advocate, I’ve qualified (and not qualified) people for Public Assistance, Food Stamps and Medicaid as well as other services, during my 25 years of service as a County Government Employee. I'm someone you can count on.  I’ve negotiated with landlords for the homeless, and with Orange and Rockland to avoid someone’s utility shut off. I developed working relationships with a host of various other agencies in Rockland. I managed to find immediate housing for all of the elderly and disabled residents of Sloatsburg Manor, Micah Manor, and the Stony Point Motel when they were faced with sudden eviction. 

 

I attended the Peoples Summit in Chicago and Peoples Convention in Philadelphia, where I collaborated with a host of grass roots organizations and community leaders from across the country. I attended workshops led by Bernie Sanders, Nina Turner, Van Jones, and Shawn King that laid out the road map for developing local community grass roots leadership and running for local office. I am co-producing  a docuseries that took my own grass roots team members to Detroit, Flint, Abingdon, NYC, Las Vegas, and Standing Rock. Our team met with community leaders and people on the street to give them a voice. All of that experience has provided some great life lessons.

In my spare time I’ve volunteered for various youth sports organizations such as Pop Warner where I coached cheerleading for many years and also served as a board member. I volunteered as team mom for North Rockland football and Little League. I served on the board of CHADD and the NY State Case Management coalition. I was a member of the NY state crisis response team (mental health). I was certified as an advocate against domestic violence  after a year long training done by Rockland Family Shelter. I organized fundraisers for youth sports, breast cancer, suicide prevention, and an NRHS scholarship fund in honor of my beautiful niece who passed away 4 years ago. I assist with transporting donated food to homeless veterans annually. I’ve participated in the United Women of Rockland’s  “The Race” for three years now, and my team (CHAOS) just signed up for our fourth. This is an amazing organization that assists women when they’re facing a medical or financial crisis. I was even honored to have spent a summer working at the Stony Point Battlefield as a “Revolutionary War Woman”. Yes, there were woman on the battlefield. I learned so much about our history and the people at the battlefield are an exceptional wealth of knowledge.  I created and produced the first annual talent show for an agency that houses abused children and I assisted with talent shows in my school district and private life. I am currently assisting as a pro se litigant in federal and appellate court advocating for the rights of children with disabilities. Over the past seven years I've authored and submitted law briefs that resulted in success in the Second Circuit Federal Court in NYC.   

Two compelling points stand out through all my experiences. One is that people everywhere crave cooperation and understanding - no matter how strong their stance is on the various issues. It's important to listen to each other. The second - and most important - is that I learned first hand through my travels, interviews and conversations with people from all walks of life is that all of them - all of us - are yearning for the same thing. Connection. A common thread. We are all One Human Family and that sentiment resonated through every conversation I've had despite belief systems or political positions. It's a beautiful thing.

I'm running on the Democratic ticket to become your next Rockland County Legislator for District One. I am here to be accountable to the residents I represent. I will serve our community honestly, and communicate to all members of the legislature that District One is ready see progress and results we can all live with. 

I am not perfect. I've faced hardships and challenges along the way, and didn't know the answers. I've always welcomed those challenges. They've given me opportunities to work on creative solutions. I listen. I find solutions that work for all parties involved. I am not just like them. I am ready to fight for and represent the people in my district. I strive to become the People's Legislator, and I take pride in that.

Mari Morrison Rodriguez

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© 2019 by  Mari Morrison Rodriguez.