Laura Ryder’s volunteerism as trustee is over, but her passion to help others just intensified as she takes a seat on the board of the biggest town on Long Island.
Ryder, who was appointed a month ago to represent the 4th Councilmanic District, is well known in the Lynbrook community. Many will remember her humanitarian efforts in Lynbrook, which she will continue as councilwoman. As a lifelong Lynbrook resident, Ryder knows what it is like to be part of a close-knit community and provide help wherever she can.
“I am extremely motivated to take on my new responsibilities as councilwoman and to give the time and attention needed to handle the needs of my constituents in the 4th district,” Ryder said.
Ryder, 54, remembers being involved in the Lynbrook community most of her life. “When I was a little girl, for many years I was a girl scout,” she said. “I have vivid memories of visiting local nursing homes and bringing seniors handmade cards and cookies.”
The happiness and joy that flowed through Ryder after doing these selfless acts as a child fueled her to continue to help others as she got older. “I will never forget the happiness and joy it brought to them,” she said. “And it made me feel wonderful to bring others joy.
“Throughout my entire adult life, I have dedicated myself to volunteering with many different organizations and committees within the Village. Serving others has always been extremely satisfying and it brings me so much joy into my life.”
Ryder is honored to have been able to serve with Lynbrook Mayor Alan Beach. “Working with his team as a trustee has afforded me an opportunity to enhance Lynbrook and improve local services,” she said. Some of these enhancements were projects that she was “100 percent” committed to.
“There is one project in particular that I hold dearest to my heart,” Ryder said. “Lynbrook’s 9/11 Memorial.” A committee of Lynbrook residents who lost their loved ones on 9/11 created this memorial.
“The committee’s goal was to create a beautiful, serene place, surrounded by nature, honoring those Lynbrook residents lost on 9/11,” Ryder explained. “A special place where Lynbrook families could sit and reflect.”
This project was completed with the help of several local contractors and businesses. According to Ryder, they “sponsored certain elements” of the project, such as the water fountain, benches, and a flagpole.
“Lynbrook’s hardworking and talented Department of Public Works employees constructed the Memorial Garden and continue to maintain the Memorial in impeccable condition,” Ryder said. “Flowers and shrubs are added yearly, resulting in a Memorial Garden that continues to grow and expand.”
The 9/11 Memorial is a reflection of one of her greatest attributes. “One of my strengths, perhaps my strongest, is my work ethic,” Ryder said. “This was instilled in me, and all of my siblings, from our loving parents Peter and Susan.”
With her strong work ethic, Ryder vows to “work tirelessly for the residents of the Town of Hempstead.” As councilwoman, Ryder says she “would like to enhance intergovernmental collaboration between the Town of Hempstead and local villages.” With the background of being a village trustee, Ryder believes there are “synergies that can be realized to more cost-effective and efficient operations in both the town and villages.”
Going from village trustee to filling a seat in the biggest town on Long Island is a big leap, but Ryder said she has “always been wiling to take on additional responsibilities” and she is confident in her “ability to handle new challenges effectively.”
She has started working on various issues.
“I am already working with Supervisor Don Clavin on crafting a tax freeze budget for 2024,” Ryder said. “What’s more, I am working with Don Clavin, opposing the Governor’s Urban Housing Plan, which would dump tens of thousands of high-density housing units in our communities.”
Ryder said that her goal is to “build upon” her “strong working relationships with all of the residents of the Council District” that she has the “honor of serving.” She also looks forward to “holding the line on taxes and enhancing services for the residents of the Town of Hempstead.”
Some ways that Ryder says she wants to improve the 4th district is repaving roads, upgrading parks, and enhancing services to senior citizens. “Further, I will aggressively improve grant monies to minimize the cost of Town projects on our taxpayers,” she said.
As Ryder moves on, she said she will miss her fellow Lynbrook Village board members.
“Each of them are incredible people and dear friends,” she said. “I have a deep love for our Village and its success and I look forward to continuing to serve Lynbrook residents, but now in a different capacity.”