Community Board 12 chooses Adams as its new chairwoman

City Councilman Ruben Wills (r.-l.) stands next to state Sen. Shirley Huntley as he swears in Adrienne Adams, Yolanda Thompkins, C. Princess Thorps and Renee Hill as new Community Board 12 officers. Photo by Rich Bockmann
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Community Board 12 elected Education Committee head Adrienne Adams as its new chairwoman during last month’s meeting in St. Albans.

Adams, who has served on the board since 2009, won by a margin of 23-15 over former Chairwoman Jacqueline Boyce, who just barely edged her out during last year’s election.

“My vision for our board is one of information and of cohesion,” Adams told board members prior to the voting. “At the board I’d like for us to have inter-committee partnerships working together to have a stronger coalition for our community. That means from time to time Health Committee members sit in on Sanitation Committee meetings, Public Safety and Education committee members sit in on Public Services Committee meetings ... and so on.”

Adams has a professional background in education management and has strongly opposed Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s school-closure policies. She said she would focus on concerns such as the absence of a hospital within the confines of the community board— covering the neighborhoods of Jamaica, Hollis, St. Albans and Springfield Gardens — and the fact that institutions such as York College and Hillcrest High School had to close in order to serve as shelters in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Boyce, a district leader who has been a member of the board for 18 years, had been appointed interim chairwoman by City Councilman Leroy Comrie (D-St. Albans) in May 2011 after he removed the former chairwoman from the position.

“This is something I did not aspire to, that was not on my agenda, but for some reason the door opened and I was here to do this job,” she said.

Under her leadership the board adopted the slogan “Unity in the Community.”

“I have done this over the past 20 years that I’ve worked in the community,” she said. “I’ve been able to build the relationships that we need, to communicate with the people that we need so that we can really have a good working community board and that the community board can be respected.”

Board members also elected the Rev. Princess Thorps to the position of second vice chair, Yolanda Thompkins as parliamentarian, Benjamin Wright Jr. as treasurer and Renee Hill as secretary, all of whom ran unopposed.

Board member Billy Mitchell had been nominated to run for the second vice chair position at the previous meeting, but Tyquana Henderson, head of the nominating committee, said Mitchell did not meet the 70-percent-attendance requirement necessary to run for the position.

Mitchell had missed one meeting since he was appointed to the board in April and Henderson said, according to the interpretation she got from Borough Hall, he was required to log 70 percent attendance for the year, not simply for the period of time he was a board member.

Reach reporter Rich Bockmann by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4574.

Posted 8:07 pm, December 19, 2012
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