A City Council candidate in District 19 recently celebrated a fundraising milestone, having raised over $45,000 just three months after launching his campaign.
With the help of 350 campaign donors, Bayside resident and political consultant Austin Shafran was able to reach the full public matching funds threshold in order to qualify for the Democratic primary in District 19, making him the candidate to accomplish this goal in the fastest time.
“I’m sincerely humbled by the outpouring of support for our campaign that will give us the deep resources needed to reach and mobilize voters across the district,” Shafran said. “Every neighborhood has a voice and I’m honored that the support we have built will allow our campaign to be a megaphone for the needs of our communities. This is a strong first step toward the community-driven campaign we are building to help deliver the better schools, safer streets and stronger economy that our families deserve.”
Shafran said that a community-driven campaign is necessary to engage District 19 resident and “build grassroots support.” The candidate told QNS that a strong driving factor for “our campaign” is to help the community become “better, strong and safer” following COVID-19.
“I never say ‘my campaign’ because this is not my campaign, this is our campaign. This is a campaign driven by the ideas and the needs of the community and that will make it a better campaign and hopefully make me a better council member if I’m fortunate enough to be elected to represent this community,” Shafran said.
A diverse group of individuals and organizations in District 19 contributed to Shafran’s campaign, including residents, heads of civic associations, community board members, small business owners, seniors and parents.
Due to the ongoing pandemic, Shafran noted the “different approach” that he took to fundraising this time around compared to when he ran for City Council back in 2013.
“Previously in non-COVID times, you held fundraising events. I didn’t do a single fundraising event. This was all word of mouth, person to person requests and conversations and dialogues,” he said. “This is the kind of personalized campaigning that when I say I really consider this to be ‘our campaign,’ I take a great deal of pride in that because in this moment, we need to build strength in numbers, look at the common challenges and find solutions.”
In addition to Shafran, other District 19 City Council candidates include Tony Avella, Adriana Aviles, Richard Lee, Nabaraj KC and Vickie Paladino.