Thanksgiving is a time for family and friends to gather together and express gratitude for all that we have been given, the freedoms we enjoy and the loved ones who enrich our lives each day. Nearly 400 years after the Pilgrims came to America in search of a better life, we should acknowledge the simple things that we often take for granted: the freedom to speak our mind, to select our leadership with our own vote and to worship where and how we please.
We are blessed in Rockland County. Thinking back over the last year, I am personally thankful for the trust placed in me by the residents of our multi-faceted towns and villages. As we continue to move toward better fiscal times, I am thankful for a dedicated county workforce. I am humbled by the great steps we’ve taken in just eleven months. And though we have a long way to go, I know we will continue to build a better Rockland County for our children and grandchildren, prioritizing essential services and making ends meet without major tax hikes.
I am thankful to the current generation of Rockland County residents who continue to care for others. Working with groups like JAWONIO, the Rockland Independent Living Center and Helen Hayes Hospital offers insight into the big hearts in our communities. I pay tribute to all compassionate citizens who reach out a helping hand and serve a cause larger than themselves.
This season – as a military father – I am thankful for the small victories in fighting ISIS. I hope the sacrifices being made by our soldiers and their families bring a greater future for all people across the globe. Threats of terrorism only serve to highlight the greatness of our nation to absorb so many different cultures, different religions and different ideas.
In Rockland County, I believe we have been richly blessed with prosperity and peace. Take a moment this holiday to thank your family and friends for the little things. Happy Thanksgiving.