Sleepy Hollow Mayor Ken Wray Announces 2022 Slate For Village Trustee Election

[The information presented here is authored and submitted by the “Unite Sleepy Hollow” campaign, and edited for space by River Journal. – Ed.

Mayor Ken Wray announced today the Unite Sleepy Hollow slate for three open Trustee positions: Sandra Spiro, an incumbent running for her fourth term, and two new candidates, René León and Lauren Connell.

Believing that state and national politics have little in common with the issues facing the local voter, Unite Sleepy Hollow was established to provide voters with the best slate of candidates without regard to national political party affiliation. Since Unite Sleepy Hollow was established in 2015, they have faced minimal opposition signaling strong voter support for how the Village is governed.

In order to be placed on the ballot, Unite Sleepy Hollow must obtain 70 valid signatures by February 8. The petition drive is currently underway.  The General Election is Tuesday, March 15.  Trustees, as well  as the Mayor, are elected to two-year terms. (The next mayoral election is March, 2023.)

Mayor Wray says of the candidates, “I am grateful that Sandra Spiro is committed to continuing her service to the Village. We need her experience on the Board. The Village is literally redefining itself within a very dynamic region on the Hudson River. I have worked with both René León and Lauren Connell on efforts that are significant to the future of our Village. When she arrived in Sleepy Hollow in 2018, Lauren jumped into the public process of how the new DPW facility and the Common would impact the Continental Street neighborhood. She has been a strong voice with an incisive understanding of how complex this entire project is.” Of René León, Wray notes that “René is our first candidate from the immigrant, Hispanic communities. While running his catering business in Sleepy Hollow, he has generously given his time and thoughtful consideration to a number of important initiatives, in particular the multi-year process of drafting the new Comprehensive Plan. He is serving on the NYS mandated Police Reform and Reinvention Committee and he will continue to work on matters of public safety as an elected official.”

Candidate Bios

Sandra Spiro (Incumbent)

Sandra is running for her fourth two-year term as Village Trustee, having been first elected in 2016. Prior to becoming a Trustee, she served on the Village Planning Board. Sandra was tasked with overseeing the development of the new Village comprehensive plan, from public input to the final draft. She has also served on the Police Reform and Reinvention Committee, helped to devise the new strategic plan for the Department of Public Works and continues to work on implementing key provisions in the approved comprehensive plan.

Sandra has lived in Sleepy Hollow since 2004, first in Philipse Manor and now in Webber Park. Her 17-year old daughter attends Sleepy Hollow High School. Sandra’s career is in sales management for Stratas Foods, in the foodservice division of The Archer Daniels Midland Company. Her passion for food and community is seen through her on-going volunteerism with Loaves & Fishes, a local outreach program, where she is one of many cooks that turns food into wonderful meals.

René León

René León immigrated to Sleepy Hollow from Azuay, Ecuador in 1995. He earned his Bachelor Degree in Professional Studies from the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park and has run his off-premise catering company for ten years.

René, his wife Sarah and their three children live on Chestnut Street. They chose Sleepy Hollow as the best place to raise their family and their 6 and 9 year-old attend the TUFSD public schools. René has been an active volunteer on a number of significant efforts in the Village, including the Community Outreach Committee, producing the annual Sleepy Hollow Cultural Festival; the Police Reform and Revisioning Committee; and in the drafting of the 2018 Comprehensive Plan. When he isn’t volunteering in the community, René enjoys woodworking and running.

Lauren Connell

Lauren and her husband chose Sleepy Hollow to raise their young family, two children because “it is  more than just a place to live – it is a diverse, vibrant community full of green spaces with a rich historic past.” As an attorney focused on compliance, she has interpreted and analyzed laws and regulations for companies around the world. She received her B.A. at Georgetown University, attended law school at Wake Forest University and received a Masters of Law from Fordham University. She is currently the Head of Compliance & Integrity at Nielsen.

Lauren notes, “I have watched Unite Sleepy Hollow do great work to improve our Village since moving here and I will work to continue this legacy of success as part of the team. My priority is to see that the development of The Common is done in a way that builds and benefits our entire community.”

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