Astoria, N.Y. – Addressing a packed auditorium at the newly renovated Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens last Thursday, New York State Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas vowed to work towards restoring faith in government, bolstering New York’s economy, and addressing lingering social inequalities in the state. The speech, delivered at the joint inauguration ceremony of Simotas, Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney, and State Senator Michael N. Gianaris, came on the heels of a busy first few weeks in office in which Simotas was assigned to several key committees in the Assembly.
While acknowledging the significant challenges facing New York and the skepticism towards state government among its residents, Simotas cited her Greek immigrant parents’ hard work and sacrifice and Astoria’s rich civic and cultural heritage as her inspiration for entering public service.
“For me, serving our community is a natural calling and fighting for this district is a privilege,” she told the audience. “While it’s true that politics is too often driven by bitter partisanship and gridlock, I still believe that government can work for working people again.”
Simotas, who invoked the New York State motto of “Excelsior” – meaning “ever upward” – will immediately have the opportunity to build on her vision of a more effective and accountable government. Assigned to the Energy, Judiciary, Small Business, Banks, and Consumer Affairs and Protection Committees, Simotas will draw on her experience as an attorney and her background in economics as she confronts issues vital to both her district and New York as a whole.
“Serving on the Energy Committee will allow me to lend my voice towards protecting the interests of western Queens, which provides 60 percent of New York City’s power,” Simotas said. “I’m also looking forward to using my other assignments to work on revitalizing our state’s economy and ensuring that our legal system protects working people.”