Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan has named a new member of the common council. Sonia Frederick will be the youngest member of the legislative body.
The shuffling on the city’s legislative body goes back to City Auditor Sue Rizzo, who is taking over as Albany County Comptroller. Democratic Mayor Kathy Sheehan tapped First Ward Common Councilor Dorcey Applyrs to be the new city auditor. That left her council seat open until the next election in 2021.
Monday at City Hall, Sheehan introduced Applyrs’ successor: 25-year-old Sonia Frederick.
“I reached out to the leadership in the First Ward to discuss their views with respect to a replacement to fill Dorcey’s First Ward seat, and there was sort of a unanimous chorus of voices who were very excited,” Sheehan said.
Sheehan said Frederick will be the second Latinx common councilor and is also a volunteer EMT.
Asked how many people she considered for the seat, Sheehan reiterated that she relied on local leaders for a recommendation.
“I really wanted to have that structure within the First Ward help to determine who was the best candidate,” Sheehan said.
Frederick, who works on government risk compliance for KPMG, came to the city to attend the University at Albany in 2012. A member of the city’s Democratic Committee, Frederick says she got involved in local politics after purchasing a house in the First Ward and learning more about her local representatives.
A native of Waterloo in the Finger Lakes region, Frederick was joined at the press conference by her parents and long-term partner Antonio, with whom she lives on Sparkill Ave.
She identified two priorities:
“I particularly want to focus on the food desert occurring in the South End. That is truly a public health crisis. I want to make sure I can help that as much as I can. In addition, I do want to bring up our youth here in the community. I think having some more youth initiatives to provide them opportunities to succeed and grow into successful adulthoods within the city would be very beneficial to our ward,” Frederick said.
Officially taking office January 1, Frederick is already looking beyond 2020.
“Yes. I absolutely will look to run,” Frederick said.
Albany Common Councilors make about $20,000 a year in the part-time role.