Letter to Mayor Ernest Davis of Mount Vernon 6-6-03

Hon. Ernest Davis

Mayor of Mount Vernon, NY

Office of the Mayor

Mount Vernon, NY, 10550



June 6, 2003


Dear Mayor Davis,


I was sorry that you were unable to participate with our Jon Breen Memorial Fund Assembly this year. I understood from Leslie Alpert that you had other pressing obligations. We had a marvelous turnout and the four finalists handled themselves with considerable grace and aplomb in the midst of a difficult and demanding venue. As you well know, it is never easy to be judged by one’s peers, especially when difficult and thought provoking questions are asked and excellent answers are expected.


Meanwhile, please find a copy of the winning essay submitted by Ms. Alyson C. Baker, who happens to be the number one ranking student in the MVHS Class of 2003. I have also selected for the annual Henry M. Littlefield History Award, Ms. Oluwakemi Soyeju, a Nigerian immigrant. Ms. Soyeju, who ranks second in her class, and achieved a 750 in her History SAT II national exam, has accomplished much in her outstanding high school career. Coming to a new country and undergoing the great challenge of assimilation regarding language and culture makes her effort even more remarkable. I have therefore enclosed an essay that she composed regarding her early experience in coming to America.


Thank you very much, and I look forward to seeing you soon.





Richard J. Garfunkel




1 thought on “Letter to Mayor Ernest Davis of Mount Vernon 6-6-03

  1. Yesterday my husband I met with Therese Baumgart in New Haven , Conn. We were vacationing in Maine and I wanted to connect again with her , after not seeing her for 11 yrs.We were close friends in H.S. We had a great reunion at a Turkish restaurant . The next day , on our way home to Philadelphia we stopped in Mt. Vernon for the first time in 50 yrs. What a treat, a shock to see how different it was, and a relief to see it handn’t changed completely.

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