By Ruben Avxhiu
A fundraising for Mark Gjonaj, the first Albanian-American to have been elected in the New York State Assembly, drew dozens of supporters, friends, relatives and local star politicians, Beqir Sina reported from the scene.
The event took place at the Light House Restaurant in City Island, in The Bronx (Mark Gjonaj represents the 80th district, most of which situated in The Bronx).
The most prominent guest of the evening was Ruben Diaz Jr, the President of The Bronx Borough. Diaz Jr sided with Gjonaj’s opponent in last fall elections as did the Democratic Party machine in the borough. That seems water the bridge now that the immigrants’ son won convincingly and has already become a very active and vocal assemblyman. He was honored as “Padrino” during this year Porto Rican Parade and pleased Albanian-Americans by organizing Kosova Day in Albany. Meanwhile, Diaz Jr is preparing for an election test of his own as he is looking forward to keep the Borough President’s position.
It is an election year all over New York City and Beqir Sina reports that Gjonaj took advantage of the event to express his support in favor of Bill Thompson, who is running again for Mayor. The African-American leader, who lost against Michael Bloomberg in 2009, faces a tougher crowd this time around in the Democratic Party primaries.
The fundraising seems to have been a success.
Mark Gjonaj thanked all the participants with a message on his Facebook wall: “I would like to thank you all for your support at my fundraiser last night. After all an elected official is nothing without the support of the community. I am delighted to share in the following posts, our planned events for the month of August!”
From a “fun-filled day” for local seniors, with a picnic in Pomona, to the International Family Day, followed by the 6th Annual Allerton Avenue Festival and the Mother Teresa Food Drive, this certainly going to be a busy month. Just like Mark Gjonaj loves it.