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Editorial: Should You Choose to Become Involved … and Run for Office …

Great Neck just saw six villages hold elections, with two villages facing contested elections. In both of those cases the incumbents were returned to office. Elections can be exciting and invigorating, and contested elections are a vital part of a healthy democratic process. We support our local governments and work hard to bring all elections and all candidates to the forefront. We respect all candidates’ decisions to run for office. The Great Neck Record does not endorse any candidates, but we do endorse honest, fair elections, and we urge all prospective candidates to think hard, and work hard, before they announce their intentions to run.

If you find one form of local government or one particular local organization of especial interest, should you decide that your contribution to your community would best be offered through some form of elected office, we say “go ahead … but stop and think first.” Think how involved you would like to become and if you have the tremendous energy and available time that might be necessary. And, very important, do you know about this village or organization, do you know the history and do you know how it’s run?

Before you even entertain one thought about elected office, be sure to research that government body or that group. Be sure to get to know the officers and other community members involved. And be very sure to attend meetings and sub-committee meetings for at least a year or more before you think you know how to “run the show.” Once you know your government body or organization, once you have been around and met those involved, a committee position might just become available. Jump at this opportunity! Let yourself learn how things work from the inside out. Having served such a term or two of office, then you might consider a run for office, should the opportunity present itself. With a wealth of specific knowledge and experience you could well be the candidate best able to do the job.

When elections, any elections, come around again, please stop, look and listen. If you are the one running for office, be sure that you have equipped yourself with all of the tools necessary to do the outstanding job that this community deserves. And if you are a member of the public so fortunate to live in this free society, be sure that you exercise your precious right to vote and be absolutely certain that you vote for the one person who knows what he or she is doing and can actually serve the best interest of the public.

Experience really does count!

– Wendy Karpel Kreitzman