Biography

New York City Council Member Mark Levine represents the 7th District in Upper Manhattan. Serving as the Chair of the Committee on Parks and Recreation and as a member of the Progressive Caucus, he is a leader on many issues including housing, education, economic justice, transportation, environmentalism, and more. He is also Chair of the Council’s Jewish Caucus. 

As a community leader, Council Member Levine has been a strong advocate for addressing inequality in New York City, and a leading voice on affordable housing issues. Council Member Levine spearheaded the initiative to increase City funding for free or low-cost legal assistance to $62 million in 2017, resulting in a 24% decrease in the number of evictions for tenants in housing court.

ML_ATC_Announcement_(p_4_bottom_third).jpgBuilding on that success, Council Member Levine recently declared victory in his years long campaign to guarantee legal access for low income tenants in housing court, an idea praised by the New York Times as both “the just and fiscally smart thing to do.” He was joined by City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Mayor Bill de Blasio to announce that New York City would become the first place in America to guarantee such a right. For decades, low-income tenants facing eviction have had nowhere to turn for legal counsel, despite nearly 100% of landlords being represented. Leveling the playing field in housing court is an historic game changing policy shift for New York City, and will significantly reduce the number of families evicted from their homes, reducing the homeless population and preserving countless affordable housing units.

Council Member Levine has also sponsored legislation that would prevent landlords from checking the credit scores of would-be tenants in rent-regulated apartments, in addition to shining a light on unscrupulous landlords.

Among his most significant legislative accomplishments is the establishment of an Office of Civil Justice tasked with coordinating city resources related to civil court proceedings, especially with regard to legal representation for low-income New Yorkers in immigration and housing courts.

As Parks Chair Council Member Levine has successfully prioritized pushing for greater equity for parks in New York’s low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. And as Chair of the City Council’s Jewish Caucus, he has focused on combating Jewish poverty in New York through the creation of the Elie Wiesel Holocaust Survivors Initiative and fostering inter-group relations.

Other issues Mark has fought for include the expansion and reform of New York’s street vending industry, which he advocated for in the New York Daily News opinion piece, and the expansion of car-share services on city-owned streets to alleviate traffic congestion. Speaking three languages himself, Mark has also advocated strongly for the inclusion of foreign language instruction in City schools, and in 2015 published a White Paper on the state of world language education in NYC.

In the 7th Council District Mark has fought tirelessly to improve the community safer and cleaner streets,faster bus service,cleaner parks,more affordable housing, and development appropriate to the scale and context of the neighborhood.

Mark began his career as a bilingual math and science teacher at Junior High School 149 in the South Bronx.  He went on to found the Neighborhood Trust Federal Credit Union, which helps low-income families in Upper Manhattan gain access to financial services including more than $25 million in microloans. In the years before he entered the City Council, Mark served as Executive Director of Teach For America-New York and as Executive Director of the Center for After-School Excellence at TASC. He has been recognized nationally for his work as a social entrepreneur.

Mark has long taken a leading role in his community. Elected as a Democratic District Leader in 2007, in 2009 he then founded the Barack Obama Democratic Club of Upper Manhattan, a diverse grassroots organization focused on progressive activism and political reform. He also served as chair of the Traffic and Transportation Committee on Manhattan Community Board 12 where he called for improved subway and bus service, and championed the cause of making streets safer for bicyclists.

Mark is a long time Washington Heights resident with his wife and their two sons. He graduated from Haverford College with a B.A. in physics and holds a Masters in Public Policy from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.


Mark Levine comenzó su carrera profesional como maestro de bilingüe de ciencias y matemáticas en la escuela JHS 149 en el sur del Bronx.  Después el sirvió come Director Ejecutivo de Teach for América de Nueva York. En este puesto el supervisó la colocación y entrenamiento de cientos de maestro  con alto rendimiento en escuelas en alto Manhattan y el Bronx.  El continuó como un líder de educación como director Ejecutivo del Centro para Excelencia de Extraescolar, una iniciativa sin fines de lucro apoyando programas extraescolares por todo los cinco condados. 

Durante el tiempo que Mark fue maestro el vio como las familias de sus estudiantes faltaban servicios básicos financieros, incluyendo cuentas de bancos. El inicio  Neighborhood Trust, la primera cooperativa de crédito para el desarrollo de la comunidad en el alto Manhattan.  La cooperativa de crédito ha ayudado miles de residentes de bajo ingreso obtener prestamos para iniciar negocios, pagar para educación, y hasta han logrado ser dueños de casas. La cooperativa continua ser una roca de la comunidad.


En 2007 , Mark fue elegido a servir como líder Distrito Democrático del alto Manhattan.  Durante la elección presidencial del 2008 el honradamente estaba en la lista de candidatos elegido para apoyar el presidente Obama.  En enero 2009 el inicio el club de Demócratas de Barack Obama en el alto Manhattan. El club de demócratas ha sido una fuerza para los residentes de la comunidad convertirse en una voz política. Mark también sirvió como el presidente del comité de Trafico y Transportación. En este puesto el llamo a atención para mejorar el servicio en los trenes y los autobuses, y  defendió la causa de asegurar las calles para los ciclistas.  

Como miembro de concejal de la ciudad, Mark vas a continuar a abogar para que Nueva York sea una ciudad para todos. Adonde gente de todos ingresos tengan una vivienda  económica, escuelas buenas para mandar sus hijos, y un trabajo que paga sueldos justos para vivir cómodo.

Mark es un residente de Washington Heights y es fluyente en Español.  El vive con su esposa Ivelisse y sus dos hijos, quien atienden escuelas publicas localmente.  El es un miembro activo de la sinagoga Tabernáculo Hebreo.  Mark obtuvo su licenciatura en Físicas de la universidad de Haverford y completo su Maestría en Policía Publica de la universidad de Harvard. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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