The Business of the City: Miscellaneous

Sunday, May 16, 2010

A Letter from Dorothy Henry, Today's Guest Blogger

Mrs. Dorothy Henry, retired principal of Woodland Elementary School, also serves as 2-7 Committeewoman of the Plainfield Democratic City Committee. As an active, healthy senior with a daily walking regimen, she won her committee race as an "off the line" New Democrat for Plainfield candidate.  

Dear Plainfield Neighbor,

I have been an active member of the Plainfield community for over 60 years, as an educator and as a longtime community activist. Today, I am proud to endorse Democrat Rebecca Williams for the 2nd and 3rd Ward At-large seat on the Plainfield City Council.

I have known Rebecca for many years, and many of you do, too. As a college professor, she taught American Literature and African American culture, politics, and literary thought at the Plainfield Senior Citizens Center, a vibrant, exciting course that was the most popular one among all the Union County College L.I.F.E. programs at the time.

I also served with Rebecca for several years on the Plainfield Adult School Advisory Board and on the Plainfield Cultural and Heritage Commission--her volunteer service was outstanding. 

Through her many volunteer activities, Rebecca has shown that she is dedicated to Plainfield--in addition, her commitment to improving the quality of your life as a senior citizen speaks for itself. This is why I am serving as one of her Campaign Chairs this year, along with Mr. Donald Van Blake and Dr. Inez P. Durham. 

I feel that Rebecca best represents the hope and promise of her generation--she is highly educated, personable, and passionate about our city. Her work in getting young people to vote, her teaching, and her volunteer service to Plainfield have made her a wonderful role model for our children and granchildren. Her intellect, independence, and analytical mind are greatly needed on the Plainfield City Council during this critical time.

But more than that, I want you to know that I support Rebecca because her vision includes ways to serve and assist the seniors here in Plainfield. Here's a question for you: Are you better off today than you were 4 years ago?

We, as seniors, are hurting. Rebecca is dedicated to making sure that every senior who qualifies is aware of the programs available to help freeze property tax rates for senior citizens, even as she works to stabilize our taxes.

We, as seniors, are concerned about our rising PMUA rates. Rebecca is determined to gain support for her PMUA proposal for once a week pickups to reduce your PMUA service bill and to make the PMUA Commission a voluntary one.

We, as seniors, now live active and healthy lives--we walk, play golf and tennis, and spend time with our energetic grandchildren. Rebecca's plan to upgrade Cedar Brook Park for more recreational use by seniors will promote active and healthy senior lifestyles.

Rebecca is decisive in her ability to make a reality of a proposal she has developed with Donald Van Blake to build a Civic Sports and Educational Complex here in Plainfield using President Obama's federal stimulus dollars at no cost to us.

Rebecca is certainly dedicated, determined, and decisive--she fulfills the promise of the civil rights generation that came before her--the "dream" of Dr. King, and now the "hope" also represented by Barack Obama's election to the highest office in the land. 

Rebecca is the best hope we have right now for Plainfield. I hope you will join me and the rest of our community in voting for her on Tuesday, June 8th to be elected as our New Democratic councilwoman.
Yours truly,

Mrs. Dorothy Henry     

Rebecca! Endorsed by Councilors 
Cory Storch (Ward 2) and Adrian Mapp (Ward 3)

Rebecca Williams, City Council Candidate
New Democrats for Plainfield


Column D
Vote Tuesday, June 8


  1. I love Mrs. Henry! I am a teacher and I find read Mr. Burney's blog post which seems to demean teachers, or college professors, in your case. He says that while you are studying and teaching "English literature," he has "solid business experience and now management experience." What would make him think that his expertise is superior to yours? What part of his experience has benefited Plainfield. It is ironic that he demeans those who teach and yet has rented out his manor house to a group that is honoring Dr. Cornel West, a foremost African American college professor and intellectual. I have read all Dr. West's books, and he certainly would disagree with Mr. Burney's disparaging assessment of the value of your bringing your wealth of experience to bear on a municipal council. We need fresh and active voices like yours. I would have posted this comment on Mr. Burney's blog but there is no comment function.

  2. Hi, 10:36,

    I am proud to study and teach literature. I teach at a public institution, a "community" college, which I view as an extension of the community activism to which I have dedicated my life. You mention Cornel West, a public-minded intellectual if there ever was one! He, along with others (bell hooks, Michele Wallace, Robert Reid-Pharr, Audre Lorde, Cheryl Wall, etc.)whose works I teach in my African American literature courses, is one of my heroes. For anyone to suggest that teaching precludes one from being able to analyze and develop legislative policies is unfortunate and short-sighted. I know that the voters in the 2nd and 3rd wards will read my proposals and decide for themselves whether they think I will be an effective advocate. I will bring my analytical and research experience to the council table and actually get things done. Thanks for your comment.