Photo by Max Parrott/QNS
City Councilman Donovan Richards picks up a big labor endorsement in the race for Queens borough president.

A week after he was endorsed by the Queens County Democratic Party, City Councilman Donovan Richards picked up another endorsement in his run for Queens Borough President.

District Council 37, New York City’s largest municipal public employee union, will turn out an army of supporters for Donovan from its nearly 46,000 members and retirees who call Queens home.

“For nearly seven years now, Donovan Richards has served the people of the 31st District of the City Council in southeast Queens and the Rockaways with distinction,” DC 37 Executive Director Henry Garrido said. “He has labored tirelessly for improved public safety and more affordable housing in his district. We believe that he will take this level of energy and commitment to Queens Borough Hall. Our support is going to make a significant difference in this race.”

DC 37 members care for the sick and the elderly and serve as interpreters and reporters in courthouses. They maintain bridges, parks, roads and subways, and staff hospitals, schools, libraries, social service centers and city colleges.

“For many of our families, labor unions are the path to the middle class and the dream of home ownership,” Richards said. “I know how hard DC 37 works to protect their members and advocate for the rights of workers. That’s why I’m proud to have their support in this race. As Queens Borough President I’ll always ensure that the issues of organized labor and the concerns of working men and women as part and parcel to ur comprehensive solutions.”

City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer picked up a celebrity endorsement of actor Kal Penn, who starred in the cancelled NBC sitcom “Sunnyside,” and Penn joined him in that neighborhood as well as Jackson Heights Monday evening canvassing for signatures.

Former City Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley was the first candidate to file the requisite 2,000 valid signatures to get on the ballot for the March 24 special election.

“I’m thrilled that our campaign was the first to file signatures with the Board of Elections,” Crowley said. “This was an outstanding achievement, fueled by grassroots energy and incredible support by members of organized labor, friends, and family. There’s no doubt about it: our campaign feels the momentum. While we might not have the machine on our side, this early victory can be attributed to the fact that there’s strong enthusiasm for our fight to get Queens its fair share of city funding and to completely reimagine and revamp our borough transit system.”

The six candidates need to gather the necessary signatures by Jan. 14. City Councilman Costa Constantinides, police reform advocate Anthony Miranda, and James Quinn, a veteran prosecutor who worked in the Queens District Attorney’s office round out the field.

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