In the sole local race up for a vote in the Town of Rosendale on Election Day 2020, Democrat Carrie Wykoff is running unopposed for a seat on the Town Board. She is already the interim appointee to the seat recently vacated by John Hughes; this election is to fill out the remaining year of Hughes’ term.
What’s your connection to the Town of Rosendale?
My family moved to Rosendale 14 ½ years ago when my daughter Maitreya was born. I had previously helped a friend open a business in New Paltz and I loved the area. What I love most and want to preserve is the strong sense of community.
What in your background has prepared you for a role on the Town Board?
I have a BFA in Theater with a minor in Theater Management. I am also an ordained interfaith minister and certified yoga teacher. Professionally, I am an event planner, and I have a company, Events That Matter. Currently, I am the director of operations for High Meadow School. I pride myself on my problem-solving and communication skills.
I have not held public office before. In college, however, I was the president of the Musical Theater Society and vice president of Student Government. As a volunteer in Rosendale, I have worked with the Rosendale Theatre since the beginning of the Collective, and am currently the vice president of the Board. I am also the co- chair of the Rosendale Street Festival. Volunteering is a family value for us, and we have been involved as well with the Rondout Valley Growers’ Association, UlsterCorps, the Center for Creative Education and many election campaigns.
What local issues do you see as highest priority during the term that you would be serving on the Board?
This term (it is one year) for me will be, first and foremost, a time of learning. I look forward to understanding all of the committees/commissions that I will serve as liaison for. I also look forward to learning more about the ins and outs of how our town runs. As well, I look forward to helping the community to know how the town runs and where they can get involved. Also, in this time of Covid and political unrest, I feel it is of the utmost importance for the community to come together safely to rebuild and assist each other as neighbors.
What’s your vision for how Rosendale could be a better place by the end of your term?
Well, as I said, this term is only one year long, but I hope it is not my only one! I would hope that I can assist the growth of the great sense of community that I feel is the spirit of Rosendale. How can all of us work together to help our neighbors and our town? I feel many people in town and beyond want to get involved in democracy and local issues, and many times they do not know how they can do so. I am hoping I can help with this!
Which liaison positions do you see as the best fit for your skill set, experience and interests?
I am honored to be the liaison for the Planning Board, Economic Development, the Zoning Board of Appeals, the Rondout Municipal Center, the Rosendale Community Police Reform Committee and our historian. I feel thrilled to be working with and learning from all of the citizens and town employees who are working for the betterment of Rosendale.
I have been a small-business owner for years, and again, have been involved with running the Rosendale Theatre for over a decade, so Economic Development was something I have always been interested in. I am also honored to be working with the Rosendale Community Police Reform Committee as we learn about how our Police Department runs and really explore what the priorities of our community members are when it comes to the police; and I look forward to developing some online programs with our fantastic historian, Bill Brooks.