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Meet Seth Ross, Candidate for Village Trustee

rossSeth Ross was one of the three candidates selected by the Citizens Nominating Committee to serve a two-year term as Village Trustee. The Village election will be held on Tuesday March 21 at Scarsdale Library.

In order to help you get to know him better, we asked him a few questions – and here are his responses.

(Q) Why are stepping up to serve the Village? What in your past civic activities prepares you for the position?

I'll answer these questions together because the answers are really intertwined. I've always believed that it's important to participate actively in one's community. Government "by the people" is meaningless if the people don't participate, and it's only as good as the character and the efforts of the people who are willing to step up.

Accordingly, since I moved to Scarsdale over 20 years ago I have done quite a bit of civic work. Scarsdale was a good fit for me in that the community as a whole works so hard to keep politics and partisanship out of local government. So I joined the TVCC (most of the functions of which have now been assumed by the Scarsdale Forum) and became a member of its board of directors, volunteered as a firefighter, and served on a number of committees, including the CNC and the Procedure Committee (which I chaired about ten years ago). I also served on and chaired the Zoning Board and the Planning Board.

In all of these roles I had the opportunity to participate and to learn about the community and some opportunity to influence outcomes. The work I was doing frequently required me to give a lot of thought to what I believed was best for the community. I also served on the Scarsdale Bowl Committee and chaired that committee in 2010. That was (maybe unexpectedly) one of the most important experiences I've had as a local volunteer because it exposed me to the examples of people who had done really outstanding service to the community, had made Scarsdale a better place, and took tremendous satisfaction in what they had accomplished. These people were great role models, and the satisfaction they got from their community service was contagious.

I am currently a trustee of the Scarsdale Foundation, a local charity that helps Scarsdale residents (as well as others) in a variety of ways and, again, exposes me to people (my fellow trustees) who do a great deal of good in the community. My 20 plus years of service in all these capacities has helped me to understand how Scarsdale functions and to develop the skill set I think is necessary for successful service on the Board of Trustees, and I think that service as a Village trustee is a logical next step.

(Q) What do you think are the key challenges facing Scarsdale today?

As always, the overriding challenge is to provide the government the Village needs, including the services and amenities that our residents expect, and to do so in a fiscally responsible manner. This has become increasingly difficult as it becomes more and more expensive for municipalities even to sustain current levels of service, not to mention upgrading services and facilities to keep pace with residents' changing needs.

This year, of course, there is an additional set of challenges. Both the second reval and the diminution of confidence in our local government that resulted from it must be dealt with. All of this is happening in an environment in which government in general has come to be widely perceived as, at best, a necessary evil rather than a really positive force.

Nevertheless, I think it's important that all of us, particularly those serving or seeking to serve as public officials, appreciate the issues we face as a community and a society and the ability of government to address those issues. Of course, those issues change and evolve over time, as do the tools available to government to tackle them, and one of the fundamental challenges of government at all levels is to evolve accordingly.

The many current threats to the quality of our physical environment comprise one such issue, and a very urgent one. The Village's food compost drop-off (the first of its kind in Westchester County) and the textile recycling bin, both at the Village's Secor Road facility, as well as the pilot LED streetlight program, are among the Village's efforts to combat some of those threats.

In response to concerns about the quality of communications between our local government and our residents, the Village's Ad Hoc Committee on Communications was formed and a new website (which is a big improvement over the previous one) was launched.

These are just a few of the efforts on the part of the Village to address changing needs and priorities. These efforts will be built upon and new ones will be launched as needed so that our local government can fulfill both its mandate and its potential as a positive force.

Photo Opps: Emily Hirsh Honored, Scarsdale Boys Excel at Ski Race

Here are few photos from this week in Scarsdale.

candyncardsprocOn Thursday, January 19, 2017, County Legislator Ben Boykin honored Emily Hirsch, owner of Candy ‘N Cards, with a special proclamation from Westchester County. After 50 years, Ms. Hirsch’s doors will be closing at the end of the month, so Boykin wanted to do something to honor her on the occasion. He visited the store and presented her with a framed proclamation, which declared January 31, 2017 “Emily Hirsch Day” in the County of Westchester.

ski race 2On Saturday, January 21, 2017, Heathcote fourth grader William Lemerond and second grader Charles Lemerond competed in a ski race, the Giant Slalom at Ski Sundown. Over 40 U10 boys competed in the race. William came in third, and Charles came in 4th.

Scarsdale Varsity Players Compete at the Disney Girl's Soccer Showcase

staffordNayumi Parente, Carly Rubin and Allison Stafford, all on the Varsity A soccer team at Scarsdale High School, are also members of a club soccer team that competed at the Disney Girls Soccer Showcase in Orlando over New Year's weekend and won a championship in their age group. The team, New York Soccer Club Elite 2000 Sapphire, won its U-17 bracket against top teams from Colorado, Kentucky and Florida and then, in a thrilling contest prevailed over the winner of the other U-17 bracket, New Jersey-based STA Morris United, by a score of 1-0.

A total of 346 girls teams from throughout the United States competed in the 2016-2017 Disney Girls Soccer Showcase at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando. This year's event featured teams from 36 states, in age groups ranging from U-15 to U-19, representing the highest level of girls' soccer in the country. More than 200 college soccer coaches attended the tournament and watched the games to identify and observe potential talent for their programs.

Parente, a striker, Rubin, a mid-fielder, and Stafford, a defender, are each key members of NYSC Elite 2000 Sapphire, which won its first game against a team from Kentucky 2-1, tied its second game against a very physical opponent from Colorado 1-1 and won its bracket with a convincing 4-0 win over a team from Jacksonville, Florida. Taken together with their 1-0 victory in the championship game, the team collectively outscored its opponents by 8-2 over the course of four games. The fact that they surrendered a total of only two goals was especially noteworthy.

The experience was a memorable one for all three girls and the closeness and camaraderie among all the players was great to see. Each of the girls is looking forward to continuing the season during the spring of 2017, which will include a trip to Richmond, Virginia in March to compete in the Jefferson Cup, another high profile national girls soccer tournament. And when the 2017-2018 school year begins in September, they each expect to continue their soccer career at Scarsdale High School, hoping to carry over some of the magic they brought to the 2016-2017 Disney Girls Soccer Showcase toward their goal of a third straight section championship for the Raiders.

Kathy and Bob Steves to Receive the 2017 Scarsdale Bowl

DSC04899Kathy and Bob Steves, an extraordinary couple with over 30 years of dedicated volunteerism to Scarsdale, will be the 2017 joint recipients of the community's highest award, the Scarsdale Bowl. The Scarsdale Bowl is awarded annually to "one who has given unselfishly of time, energy, and effort to the civic welfare of the community," according to the Bowl founding documents.
David Lee, Chair of the Scarsdale Bowl Committee, said "Kathy and Bob have been immersed in the civic life of Scarsdale for decades; their outstanding and generous contributions to the community epitomizes the meaning of the Scarsdale Bowl."

Kathy and Bob will be honored at the Scarsdale Bowl dinner on Wednesday evening, April 26th, at The Fountainhead in New Rochelle. Lee encourages all members of the community to attend: "It is an incredibly uplifting evening to celebrate the spirit of volunteerism that permeates and propels our Village." The Bowl Committee will send out invitations March 1st .
"The Scarsdale Bowl was initiated in 1943 to recognize an individual's outstanding contributions to the civic life of this community," said Lee. The Bowl Committee, a diverse group of 16 community volunteers, selects the recipient after reviewing many worthy candidates who are nominated by the community.

Twice before, the Bowl was awarded to a husband and wife: Esther and Robert Shay in 1994, and Eleanor and Robert November in 2001, in recognition that each "set an example of civic responsibility toward the betterment of the community."DSC07908

Last Sunday evening, the Committee voted to honor Kathy and Bob Steves. Delegates from the Bowl Committee including Lee, Scarsdale Foundation President Emily Sherwood, Foundation Liaison to the Committee Evelyn Stock, Committee Secretary/Treasurer Robert Jeremiah and Committee members Norman Alterman, Mona Longman and Suzanne Seiden arrived at the Steves' home on Sunday evening to announce their selection. Kathy and Bob were completely surprised. They appeared "stunned, overwhelmed, humbled and very appreciative," Lee said. Bob opened the door after feeling disappointed that the NY Giants lost to the Green Bay Packers. Bob said "I was almost speechless—very hard for me –when the Committee showed up at the house. To say I was deeply moved would be an understatement. Volunteerism is the heart and soul of Scarsdale and it has been its own reward. I'm especially pleased to share this honor with my wife. I've looked to past Bowl recipients as role models and look forward to serving that same role." And Kathy said, "I am thrilled to be honored as a Scarsdale Bowl recipient, an honor I truly never expected. To be included with my husband is extraordinary. Volunteerism has always been an important part of our lives in Scarsdale."

steves2Kathy and Bob Steves have a long distinguished record of service to Scarsdale. They manage to answer the call to service in addition to both working at full time jobs. Kathy is the library Director at Cardinal Spellman High School in the Bronx and Bob is the Assistant Treasurer at Fordham University. "They have dedicated themselves to making Scarsdale a better community for all of its residents. I salute and appreciate those efforts," said Evelyn Stock.

Bob is currently the Co-Chair of the Public Library Capital Campaign Committee and has been involved in numerous major organizations of the community, including the school board and Village government, serving as both President of the Scarsdale Board of Education, and the Mayor of the Village of Scarsdale in 2015-2016. Among his long list of past civic activities, Bob has also Co-Chaired the Student Transfer Education Plan (STEP), served as a member of the School Board Nominating Committee, President and Treasurer for the Scarsdale Edgemont Family Counseling Service, and Chair of the Scarsdale Bowl Committee. Outside of Scarsdale, Bob was a Board member and President of the New York Epilepsy Institute. Bob is universally respected as a leader and selfless volunteer in the community.

Kathy is currently the Board President of Scarsdale Edgemont Family Counseling Service and a Board Member of the Greenacres Neighborhood Association and STEP.

Kathy has served continuously on community boards and has repeatedly taken on leadership positions such as: Scarsdale Neighborhood Association (SNAP) President for multiple terms, President of the Greenacres Neighborhood Association, STEP Board Co- Chair and has Chaired the Friends of the Scarsdale Public Library Book Fair for the past 10 years. She was also a member of the School Board Nominating Committee, Citizens Nominating Committee, and Chair of the Educational Advisory Board of the Scarsdale Historical Society.

The Steves' support each other's work in a low-key, behind the scenes way. For example, when Kathy is running the book fair, Bob is there working as a cashier or hauling books. When Bob was running a STEP event, Kathy set it up. Their partnership is dedicated to the best interest of the community. The Steves summed up their emotions, "We are truly delighted and honored to be this year's Bowl recipients. We share a strong belief that service is an essential part of being a member of a community. We have benefitted greatly from working with so many great people who also share that belief."

Kathy and Bob's greatest joy is their family; they have been married for 46 years. They have three children: Karen lives in Mansfield, Massachusetts and administers a program for autistic children; Matthew works with book dealers and lives in Scarsdale; and Michael, owns a marketing company and lives in China.

Please join the Bowl Committee on April 26th at the Fountainhead to honor Scarsdale's spirit of volunteerism and Kathy and Bob Steves.

A Near Win for the Scarsdale Girls Varsity Basketball Team

steckelOn Monday night 12-19 the Girls Varsity basketball team faced off against Our Lady of Lourdes school. Although official rankings are not out yet, Lourdes is projected to be ranked within the top 15 teams in the state. With a 0-3 record thus far, the Scarsdale Raiders were eager to prove that their new team is a force to be reckoned with. The team came out strong, leading by 5 after the first quarter. By the end of the half, the score was tied 25-25. The third and fourth quarters were back and fourth, Scarsdale ultimately losing by 9 due to bonus foul shots. Although a loss, the Raiders showed their tenacity on the floor and their ability to compete with strong teams. Junior Guard Lily Steckel had a breakout game, scoring 13 points. The team is starting to play as a unified group, utilizing the strengths of their diverse roster. The Raiders will play against Ursuline after the break at home on January 4th.barletta

Photos by Jon Thaler. See more here!coleman