Councilman Robert Holden has secured the endorsement of the United Federation of Teachers (UFT), the influential teachers union announced on Jan. 26.
Holden, who currently represents City Council District 30, is up for re-election.
“Robert Holden’s dedication to his community has been proven throughout his career. He is a staunch advocate for children and has earned our endorsement because of his commitment to public education,” said Michael Mulgrew, UFT’s president.
Holden said he’s “honored” to receive the endorsement from UFT.
“Our city’s educators have the most vital responsibility for New York’s most precious resource: our young people. We have always asked so much from our educators, but this pandemic has been especially trying. Despite these new challenges, they have never given up on our students,” Holden said. “I appreciate the hard work of educators more than ever, including the many teachers who live in this district.”
The former professor is an advocate of education issues in the district and the whole city. He’s a supporter of the Specialized High School Admissions Test (SHSAT) as well as the city’s Gifted and Talented program. Holden has also positioned himself as a vocal critic of Mayor Bill de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza’s education policies.
“As a retired educator, I know the importance of quality education in a young person’s life and have always made it a point to regularly visit all the schools in my district,” Holden said. “In my second term, I will continue to provide funding to enhance education and work with the UFT to ensure that our schools are places where both our educators and our students can succeed.”
Holden has represented District 30 since 2018, after he beat former Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley in the general election where he ran in various GOP party lines. Holden is a registered Democrat and will run in this year’s Democratic primary in June.
There is one other Democrat vying for Holden’s seat: Juan Ardila, a Maspeth native who’s received endorsements from the Working Families Party, state Senators Jessica Ramos and Michael Gianaris, Brooklyn City Councilman Brad Lander, among others.
City Council District 30 encompasses the Queens neighborhoods of Ridgewood, Glendale, Maspeth, Middle Village, Woodhaven and Woodside.
UFT also endorsed a slate of candidates for some other 2021 primary elections in Queens, including Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Sandra Ung for City Council District 20, Councilman Francisco Moya for City Council District 21, Shekar Krishnan for City Council District 25 and Adrienne Adams for City Council District 28.