Former Governor David Paterson to Visit Scarsdale April 18th
- On Our Radar
- Published on Tuesday, 04 April 2017 17:54
- Jill Serling
I began the new year with a lofty resolution – to meet one new person every day for the entire year. I labeled my goal – The Hello Stranger Project. I chronicle my meetings on Instagram and Facebook and seem to have developed a following. To date, I have met 93 'new friends'. I document each meeting with a photo of myself and my new friend – selfie style. I try to learn as much as possible about the person in five minutes or less, but many of my interactions are more than a half hour. Every stranger I have met has an interesting, unique story. I have discovered that people like to talk about themselves and like to share their information. I have been hugged and blessed by many, and shaken hands with most that I meet. I have met men and women from different countries and states other than New York. There was one week where I met several strangers who had been born in Colombia. My new friends hail from countries that include China, Haiti, Bangladesh, Dominican Republic, South Korea, to name just a few. It has been really nice to meet the people who comprise my greater-Westchester neighborhood.
Last week, I was fortunate to meet the former Governor of the State of New York, David Paterson. David will be speaking locally for the Scarsdale Adult School on Tuesday, April 18 at Scarsdale High School so my meeting with him was for professional purposes. David was Day 89 of the Hello Stranger Project.
Here's what I said in my posting:
"Hello David Paterson. David is the former Governor of the State of New York. David grew up in Hempstead, NY - an idyllic town to grow up in according to David. David attended public school and was in the mainstream classroom, although he became legally blind at a young age. His mother felt it was important for David to be in a classroom with children with whom he would socialize, and work with in the future. David graduated high school a year early and earned his undergraduate degree from Columbia University and his law degree from Hofstra.
David believes in the importance of special education in public schools. He values education – he believes life is all about education. His mother, not surprisingly, was an educator. Many of his teachers and professors made a lasting impact on his life and career choices. In fact, his sixth grade teacher was the keynote speaker at his inauguration as Lieutenant Governor.
David has a strong moral and spiritual compass. He believes we don't listen to our intuition enough. He is presently writing a book that includes that subject. David is exceptionally proud of his work and support of the establishment of the Four Freedoms Park on Roosevelt Island. He sees the parallels of one disabled leader supporting the vision of another disabled leader. An interesting statistic that David shared with me twice while we chatted was that 66% of blind people don't work, but have a greater higher education graduation rate than the average American."
David is engaging and charismatic. I could have spent an entire day chatting with him. When I left our meeting, I was very excited to share my 'new friend' with the Scarsdale Adult School community. David has compelling stories to share about being legally blind, the first African American Governor of the State of New York, and his time spent as a public servant. He will also share his observations about and interactions with President Trump, and other key figures he met while serving the State of New York. He will reflect on the roles that race, disability, and scandal played in his political career and provide a unique perspective on the behind-the-scenes interactions between politicians, appointed staff members, and the press. The presentation will include ample time for "no holds barred" questions and answers as David provides insights and predictions for New York State and the country. The evening will be moderated by Len Tallevi, a former Social Studies Department Chair and Teacher at Scarsdale Middle School.
Details about the event include: $20 admission fee. Free for High School Students. The conversation begins at 6:30 pm at Scarsdale High School. Registration at www.ScarsdaleAdultSchool.org. Questions? 723-2325.