by Bill Batson
Former South Nyack Mayor Patricia “Tish” DuBow was honored by residents and local elected officials at a community celebration in Franklin Street Park on Friday May 9. After nine years in the Mayor’s office, DuBow chose not to run for another term. However, DuBow’s 23 years of public service are not over. She has been appointed to complete the un-expired Trustee term of Bonnie Christian, who was elected Mayor on March 19th. This week’s sketch log is dedicated to DuBow’s service to the citizens of South Nyack.
Before her formal role in government, DuBow was a long time activist serving on the boards of Planned Parenthood and Friends of the Nyacks. DuBow began her public service in 1990 as a member of South Nyack’s Zoning Board of Appeals. She was elected a Trustee in 1994 and 12 years later, she became Mayor.
During her tenure, she was active with the Rockland County Conference of Mayors, and a zealous advocate for and protector of her village. As Trustee DuBow can continue to insist that the concerns for the village are incorporated into the planning and implementation of the new Tappan Zee Bridge.
Tish DuBow was not interviewed for today’s column, so this Nyack Sketch Log will be a surprise to her. The reflections and well wishes that follow are from her colleagues in local government. To paraphrase a show from the golden age of television, Tish DuBow, this is your public life!
Assemblymember Ellen Jaffee
In working with Tish DuBow, I’ve witnessed firsthand her tireless commitment and dedicated service to the Village of South Nyack. Throughout the many years of discussion and planning for a new Tappan Zee Bridge, Tish has been a vocal advocate for the village and its residents, determined to ensure that they receive maximum protection and benefits during and after construction. Tish has made her mark on the Village of South Nyack, improving the quality of life and enhancing her community. I have no doubt as Trustee she will continue in that role.
Undersheriff Robert Van Cura also Honored
After a 32 year career in law enforcement in South Nyack, retiring Chief Bob Van Cura has been appointed Undersheriff for the County of Rockland. Van Cura was honored and thanked by South Nyack residents and local elected officials at the community celebration on May 9. In addition to his service as a law enforcement officer, Van Cura has held the position of Rockland County Police Benevolent Association President and has served on the New York State Executive Committee on Counter Terrorism.
Orangetown Supervisor Andy Stewart
When I think of Tish DuBow, on the occasion of her retirement from service as Mayor of South Nyack, I remember walking door-to-door in South Nyack with her, doing the essential political work of democracy – collecting signatures, activating voters, answering questions about local government and listening to peoples’ concerns.
I remember standing side by side with Tish at so many Tappan Zee Bridge and Thruway meetings, nudging each other with our elbows to register our frustration with the usual formulaic responses of bureaucrats putting on a show of gathering public input when they are already convinced they have the right answer. Supporting her calls for a redesigned Thruway exit 10 with allocation of vacant land to community benefit, whether as open space, commercial development or “lid park.”
I think of sitting at her kitchen table talking with Gene DuBow, whose mighty pen has made the letters to the editor page of local papers much more interesting to read so many times. Tish has served well, she will continue to inspire and lead and I’m looking forward to working together during the year to come! Thank you Tish for all you have done for South Nyack, and for Orangetown!
Rockland Legislature Chairwoman Harriet Cornell
South Nyack is known for its extraordinary vistas, its diverse lively population, and the indomitable spirit of Patricia DuBow. As a long-time mayor and village leader, Tish never stops fighting for the interests of the people. Her voice has been heard loud and clear for over a decade protecting the land and residents of South Nyack from adverse impacts of a new Tappan Zee Bridge. As a leader of Friends of the Nyacks, she helped develop the concert series in Memorial Park and much more. Thankfully, Tish will remain in Village government continuing to champion causes that enhance the quality of life for all residents.
Former Rockland County Legislator, midwife Connie Coker
When I was running for Rockland County Legislature in 2006, Tish DuBow was very involved in helping me to get elected. Ever since, I have appreciated just how effective she is as a campaigner for Democratic Party candidates. I would jokingly call her the “ward boss of South Nyack”. But most importantly she would still work graciously and cooperatively with elected officials from other political parties. She is an inspiring role model in how to put party differences aside to work for the good of all residents.
Village of Nyack Mayor Jen Laird-White
Tish DuBow is one of the kindest most respectful and respected public servants I have ever met. Her decency, quiet intelligence and her quick bursts of humor and enrich the world of Rockland politics. Her dedication to both her community of South Nyack and to the greater good of all of Rockland is impressive and forced her to take complicated and difficult positions when faced with the enormity of the Tappan Zee Bridge project. It was her vision that imagined that the unwieldy Exit 10 loop could be put to greater and more beneficial use. She and I schemed on all sorts of projects, from recreation and parks to shared community and commercial services.
One incredibly great thing about Tish was she always saw the possibility in any idea and was quick to say “yes, let’s explore it” rather than succumb to the “no’s”. She has been an excellent Mayor for her village. Boy will she be missed. And her earmuffs too!
Community celebration photos: Nicole DuBow
Tappan Zee Bridge photo: Alison Perry
Special thanks to South Nyack Mayor Bonnie Christian, South Nyack Village Clerk Sally Seiler and Deputy Village Clerk Denise Mishkel
Bill Batson is an activist, artist and writer who lives and sketches in Nyack, NY. Nyack Sketch Log Honors Outgoing South Nyack Mayor Tish DuBow” ©: 2013 Bill Batson.