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Local News August 21, 2014  RSS feed

CB 9 District Mgr. Calling It A Career

Carey Set To Retire This October
by Robert Pozarycki

After more than three decades on the job, Community Board 9 District Manager Mary Ann Carey will step down from her post this fall, the advisory body announced Monday, Aug. 18.

“I have overseen many projects too numerous to mention here and worked with four Borough Presidents, dozens of legislators, commissioners, District Managers and their staff,” Carey told Board 9 members in a resignation letter mailed earlier this month. “In my 35 years of service to this great city with very little exceptions, I loved every minute.”

Carey became Board 9’s district manager in 1979, serving under five mayors (Ed Koch, David Dinkins, Rudy Giuliani, Michael Bloomberg and Bill de Blasio) and four Queens borough presidents (Donald Manes, Claire Shulman, Helen Marshall and Melinda Katz). Her retirement will take effect on Oct. 1.

Throughout her tenure, she followed through on service requests made throughout Board 9’s confines, which include Kew Gardens, Ozone Park, Richmond Hill and Woodhaven. In recent years, she also advocated against proposed reductions in city funding for local community boards.

Carey also fought against the removal of the controversial Civic Virtue statue near Queens Borough Hall in Kew Gardens, and is part of an effort to have the restored statue returned there.

The last 12 months weren’t particularly kind to Carey, as last September, several Board 9 members—including its chair, James Coccovillo—sought to relieve her of her duties. Carey was ultimately placed on probation to work out problems with technology and accountability.

Carey and Coccovillo clashed publicly earlier this year, when she accused the chairperson of intimidating her and the Board 9 staff. Eventually, the chairperson and district manager resolved their differences; Coccovillo ultimately declined to run for another term.

His replacement, Ralph Gonzalez, lauded Carey for her decades of service, stating she made a lasting contribution to the communities she served.

“She has done so much for our community and for so long,” he said. “It’s difficult to imagine anyone truly filling her shoes. She can be proud of the legacy she’s leaving at Community Board 9. I know that many people in Queens and on the board join me in thanking Mary Ann for her years of dedication.”

Board 9—with the assistance of the Queens Borough President’s office—will begin looking for a new district manager following September’s meeting.