Electeds come out to support ceremonial Ulrich swearing−in

By Dee Richard

Another interesting week has gone by. On Tuesday, Peter Koo, former Republican state Senate candidate, hosted an intimate cocktail party at the Sheraton LaGuardia East in Flushing.

The party was in honor of state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo. Is it possible Cuomo is testing the waters for a possible gubernatorial run in 2010? It sort of looks that way, and he did sound good. He was rather charming and affable and he circulated among the guests displaying the sort of polished perfectionism one usually encounters in someone running for higher office, but then again, he may well be content as attorney general. Time will tell.

Among the guests was old friend Thomas Chen. It was good to see him again, as he is truly an American success story and living proof that hard work and dedication can achieve the American dream.

The interesting fact was that Koo hosted Democrat Cuomo at an event. Hmm ….

On Saturday evening, St. Andrew Avalino held its annual St. Patrick’s Day dinner. It just didn’t seem the same without Monsignor James Grace. Judge Lawrence Cullen was there with his 13−year−old daughter, Anya Sinead, who has become quite an accomplished Irish step dancer.

We sat at quite an interesting table comprised of state Sen. Frank Padavan, City Council candidates Dan Halloran and Debbie Markell, followed by Janet Malone, Tony Ramos, Mary Conoty and yours truly.

After that event, our table traipsed over to 149th Street and 20th Avenue to attend what was left of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Annual St. Patrick’s Day dinner. All in all, it was a fun evening.

The big event of the week, of course, was the ceremonial swearing−in of Councilman−elect Eric Ulrich. Eric won state Sen. Joe Addabbo’s seat in a special election when Addabbo took Serf Maltese’s Senate seat. Eric will fill the remainder of Addabbo’s unexpired term and will have to run again this November, which will be for a full four−year term.

The swearing−in was ceremonial and performed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The day’s master of ceremonies was former city Public Schools Chancellor Dr. Frank J. Macchiarola.

The invocation was conducted by the Rev. Francis Colamaria and the closing prayer and benediction by Rabbi Tzvi Berkowitz. Boy Scout Troop No. 588 conducted the presentation of the flag and the national anthem was sung by Ed Deacy.

There were so many elected officials and dignitaries present it was a virtual who’s who in politics.

To list a few, there were state Sen. Dean Skelos, the Senate minority leader; state Sen. Marty Golden; Queens County Republican Chairman Phil Ragusa, Queens County Conservative Party Chairman Tom Long; former Council Minority Leader Tom Ognibene; former Councilman Al Stabile; Republican District Leader Jane Deacy, Eric’s co−leader; and one of my all−time favorite judges, Justice Augustus Agate of the Supreme Court.

The event was held at PS 207, the Rockwood Park School, in Howard Beach with a reception immediately afterward in the school cafeteria, where the councilman−elect greeted constituents and guests.

Bloomberg sounded great and was greeted with resounding applause. Could it be Eric was sworn in by a third−term mayor, Michael Bloomberg? It sure looked and sounded that way. What an interesting afternoon.

Condolences to Joan Vogt on the death of her son Alfred, known to all as “Butch.” He was 50. You can pay your respects at Stouts on College Point Boulevard on Thursday.

That’s it for this week.

I look forward to hearing from you with information on people, parties and politics or gossip.

I like receiving your voice mails at 718−767−6484, faxes at 718−746−0066 and e−mails at [email protected].

Don’t forget to check out the Focus on Queens page.

Till next week, Dee.