Incumbents sweep in Freeport Village election


Mayor Robert Kennedy was re-elected along with fellow incumbents Carmen Piñeyro and Ronald Ellerbe.

Challenger Andrew Hardwick ran with trustee candidates Juana Prado and Frank Grossman, while challenger Stephen Drummond was with trustee candidates Phillip Prestamo and Angel Vargas.

Here are biographies of the winners:

Robert Kennedy

Robert Kennedy has served as the Village of Freeport mayor since March 2013. He decided to get into politics after a long career in the private sector in 2009 when he was elected trustee of the Village of Freeport and promptly appointed deputy mayor, he said.

Kennedy served in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Vulcan in the early 1970s, spending time in Guantanamo Bay; Norfolk, Va., and various other ports of call.

After his service in the Navy, Kennedy was appointed the vice president of technical services for Starrett Property Services Inc., where was responsible for maintaining hundreds of residential and commercial high-rise buildings and supervising several thousand employees. During his tenure at Starrett Property services, Kennedy learned the importance of maintaining a fiscally responsible budget, he said. In 1984, Kennedy decided to leave Starrett Property Services to open up his own business.

Kennedy is a licensed FAA pilot, licensed U.S. Coast Guard captain and a certified SCUBA diver. In addition, he is a member of the NAACP, American Legion, U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary (division chief), Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, the United States Conference of Mayors, the Nassau County Village Officials Association (first vice president and the New York Conference of Mayors Executive Committee.

Carmen Piñeyro

Born in the Dominican Republic, Carmen Piñeyro and her family immigrated to the United States, settling in Freeport when she was younger. Piñeyro, 40, received a bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from Loyola College in Maryland in 1998 and a post-baccalaureate certificate in paralegal studies and micro- and macro-economics from Hofstra University in 1999 and 2000, respectively.

She became the youngest member of the Freeport Board of Education in 2002, and served three terms, including as board president. In 2009, Piñeyro became the first Latina elected as a Freeport Village trustee and was re-elected in 2013. Piñeyro is chief compliance officer of United Northern Mortgage Bankers in Levittown.

Ronald Ellerbe

Ronald Ellerbe was elected to the Nassau Board of Cooperative Educational Services by local school districts in September 2007.

Ellerbe has been a member of the Freeport School District Board of Education since 1996, serving as vice president since 2006; president from 2000 to 2001; and chairman of the legislative, safety and budget committees. He is active in the New York State School Boards Association, the resolutions and state legislative network committees.

Ellerbe is also vice president of the Nassau-Suffolk School Boards Association's executive board and has served on several committees, including the legislative and finance committees. He currently chairs the nominating committee and serves as the association's representative to the Nassau BOCES Career and Technical Education committee.