Queens Borough President Melinda Katz was officially sworn into office Thursday in a star-studded political gathering.
“It’s an exciting time for me,” said Katz, in front of hundreds of supporters and a lengthy list of dignitaries. “I’m humbled and I’m honored to be the Queens Borough President.”
“I have to tell you that Melinda brings so much to this job,” de Blasio said. “She has a real passion for the people she serves. She loves this borough. I can tell you that because I’ve seen her stand up for Queens many times.”
The mayor said the “exemplary” and diverse borough “epitomizes the American Dream.”
“Melinda Katz gets to be the person who brings all those beautiful strengths together and makes this borough work for the people,” de Blasio said.
The newly elected borough president, dedicating the night to her parents, took her oath of office with her hand upon her father’s copy of the Old Testament.
Crowley, citing Biblical figures, said he hoped for Katz “the wisdom of Moses, the leadership of Joshua and the valor and the strength of Esther.”
“She possesses many of those qualities and more,” Crowley said. “We’re going to have the opportunity to see her grow.”
The standing-room-only ceremony at Queens College’s Lefrak Concert Hall also featured U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, Public Advocate Letitia James, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli and dozens of Queens legislators.
Katz’s partner, Curtis Sliwa, and the couple’s two sons, Carter and Hunter, watched from the audience.
Katz, a former member of the City Council and state Assembly, was elected Nov. 5 to be the 19th borough president of Queens. She succeeds Helen Marshall, who held the seat since 2001.
Her plans for the borough include making the Rockaway ferry permanent and pushing for more primary and urgent care facilities.
“Let’s move it forward,” Katz said. “Let’s make it a place for families to have everything they need right here in the borough of Queens.”
“My only wish is I never let you down,” Katz said.