A lifelong New Yorker, who now lives full-time in Palm Beach County, Richard was raised in Mount Vernon, New York and he was educated in the Mount Vernon public schools He graduated from Boston University with a BA in American History.
After spending a year on Wall Street as a research analyst with Bache & Co., he joined a manufacturing and importing firm, where over the next twenty-five years he rose to the position of chief operating officer. After the sale of that business, Richard entered into the financial services field with Metropolitan Life and is a Registered Representative, who has been associated with Acorn Financial Services which is affiliated with John Hancock Life Insurance Company of Boston, Ma. Today, he is a retired broker who had specialized in long-term care insurance and financial planning. One of Richard’s recent activities was to advise and encourage communities to seek ways to incorporate “sustainability and resiliency” into their future infrastructure planning.
After a lifetime in politics, with many years working as a district leader, which involved party organizational work, campaign chair activity and numerous other political tasks, Richard has been involved with numerous civic and social causes. In recent years, Richard served in 2005 as the campaign coordinator of the Re-Elect Paul Feiner Campaign in Greenburgh, NY and he again chaired Supervisor Feiner’s successful landslide victory in 2007. Over the next few years, he advised a number of political candidates.
He has served as an appointed Deputy Supervisor of the Town of Greenburgh, with responsibilities regarding the town’s “liaison program.” He was a member of the Parks and Recreation Advisory Board of the Town of Greenburgh, NY. Richard has lectured on FDR, The New Deal and 20th century American history in the Mount Vernon schools, at the Westchester Council of Social Studies annual conference in White Plains, and at many senior citizen groups, which include appearances at the Old Guard of White Plains, the Rotary Clubs of Elmsford and White Plains, and various synagogue groups around Westchester. In the winter of 2006 Richard was the leader of the VOCAL forum, sponsored by the Westchester County Office of Aging, which addresses the concerns of Westchester County’s Intergenerational Advocacy Educational Speak-out forums for senior citizens. Richard has given lectures for the Active Retirement Project, which is co-sponsored by the Jewish Community Center on the Hudson, the Greenburgh Hebrew Center, and other groups around Westchester County.
Richard also is the founder and Chairperson of the Jon Breen Memorial Fund, that judges and grants annual prizes to students at Mount Vernon High School who submit essays on public policy themes. He also sponsors the Henry M. Littlefield History Prize for the leading MVHS history student. Richard serves on the Student College Scholarship Committee of Mount Vernon High School. In past years Richard chaired and moderated the Jon Breen Fund Award’s cablecast program with the Mayor and local and school officials. Richard has been a member of Blythedale Children’s Hospital’s Planned Giving Professional Advisory Board, and was a founding member of the committee to re-new the FDR Birthday Balls of the 1930’s and 1940’s with the March of Dimes’ effort to eliminate birth defects. Their renewal dinner was held at Hyde Park on January 30, 2003. Richard is currently an active contributor to the Roosevelt Institute, which is involved in many pursuits which included the opening of the Henry A. Wallace Center at Hyde Park, and the Eleanor Roosevelt – Val-Kill Foundation. In 2007, he proposed to the City of Mount Vernon an effort to develop an arts, educational, and cultural center as part of a downtown re-development effort. Richard was a team partner with the Infrastructure & Energy Solutions Group. IEFG which has developed innovative strategies for the 21st Century.
Richard hosted a weekly program on WVOX-1460 AM radio, called “The Advocates,” which was concerned with “public policy” issues. The show, which was aired from 2007 until May 15, 2013, has had amongst its guests; Representative Charles Rangel, Chairperson of the House Ways and Means Committee, Mr. Jonathan Alter of Newsweek, along with hundreds of others. All the 300 shows are archived at http://advocates-wvox.com. Richard currently gives lectures on Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, FDR and the Jewish Community, The New Deal, FDR and Douglas MacArthur, 20th Century American Foreign Policy Resulting in Conflict, and Israel’s Right to Exist.
Richard lives in Boynton Beach, Fl, with his wife Linda of 44 years. They have two married children. Their daughter Dana is a Rutgers College graduate, with a MS from Boston University, and is the Assistant Director of Recruitment at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Their son Jon is an electrical engineering graduate of Princeton University and a senior software architect at NY/Mellon Bank in NYC.
Richard J. Garfunkel
KTI Synagogue, Rye Brook, NY- Long Term Care & Estate Conservation-
Anshe Shalom Synagogue, New Rochelle, NY- Long Term Care-
American Legion Post, Valhalla, NY- Long Term Care and Asset Protection-
Doyle Senior Ctr, New Rochelle, NY-Long Term Care and Asset Protection-
AME Methodist Ministers, New Rochelle, NY, LTC and Charitable Giving-
Profession Women in Construction, Elmsford, NY, LTC and Business Benefits-
Kol Ami Synagogue- White Plains, NY, Long Term Care and Disability -
Beth El Men's Club-New Rochelle, NY-Long Term Care-Is it Necessary-
Greater NY Dental Meeting Javits Ctr, NY, NY- LTC and Disability-
IBEW Local #3 , White Plains, NY, Long Term Care and Asset Protection,
Health Fair -Bethel Synagogue, New Rochelle, NY-LTC and Disability,
Heath Fair- Riverdale Mens Club CSAIR- Riverdale, NY- LTC- Life
Weight Watchers of Westchester and the Bronx-LTC and Tax Implications
Sunrise Assisted Living of Fleetwood, Mount Vernon, NY-LTC
Sprain Brook Manor of Scarsdale-LTC- November 15, 2001
Sunrise Assisted Living of Stamford, Connecticut, February 2002
Kol Ami Synagogue, White Plains, NY, February, 2002
The Old Guard Society of White Plains, NY, April, 2002
The Westchester Meadows, Valhalla, NY August, 2002
Kol Ami Synagogue, White Plains, NY, October, 2002
JCC of Scarsdale, Scarsdale, NY, November, 2002
The Westchester Meadows, Valhalla, NY, January, 2003
The Rotary Club of White Plains, NY January, 2003
The Westchester Meadows, Valhalla, NY April, 2003
Westchester Reform Temple, Scarsdale, NY January, 2004
Mount Vernon High School, Mount Vernon, NY March 2004
Kol Ami/JCC of White Plains, NY November, 2004
The Westchester Reform Temple, Scarsdale, January 2005
The Sunrise of Fleetwood, Mount Vernon, April, 2005
The Woodlands of Ardsley, assisted living, November, 2005
The Woodlands of Ardsley, assisted living, December, 2005
The Woodlands of Ardsley, assisted living, January, 2005
Rotary Club of Elmsford, April, 2006
Kiwanis Club of Yonkers, June, 2006
Greenburgh Jewish Center, November, 2006
Temple Kol Ami, White Plains, February, 2007
Hebrew Institute, White Plains, March, 2007
Temple Kol Ami, White Plains, NY, April, 2007
Westchester Meadows. Valhalla, November, 2007
Hebrew Institute. White Plains, November, 2007
Art Zuckerman Radio Show- January, 2008
JCC of the Hudson, Tarrytown, February, 2008
Matt O’Shaughnessy Radio Show, March, 2008
WVOX –Election Night Coverage, November, 2008
WVOX – Inaugural Coverage, January 20, 2009
The Advocates-host of the WVOX Radio Show, 2007- 2010
Rotary Club of Pleasantville, February, 2009
Hebrew Institute of White Plains, May, 2009
JCC Hudson, Tarrytown, December, 2009-10-11-12
Brandeis Club, Yonkers, March 25, 2010