What it means to be a “Pioneer” at Rochdale Village


What you missed at the Pioneers Dance

What you missed at the Pioneers Dance

As part of the 50th Anniversary celebration events at Rochdale Village, a “pre-gala” recognition ceremony was held on behalf of the “Pioneers” of the community.

Pioneers are considered to be those residents that moved into the cooperative anywhere between December 1963 and December 1964, which is the first official year that the complex was open for occupancy.

The night’s celebration had 60’s and 70’s theme to reflect the time period.  A room of over 300 revelers packed the grand ballroom and enjoyed refreshments, entertainment and more.

Speakers included Congressman Gregory Meeks, Councilpersons Ruben Wills and Letitia James who is also in the race for the Democratic Public Advocate’s office in November.

New York State Comptroller John Liu bestowed a commemoration to the community’s senior citizen center and Assemblywoman Vivian Cook was the evening’s keynote speaker.

The Master of Ceremony was none other than Rochdale Village board member, Talib Bey.  President Janine Cross opened the affair with an address of recognition and achievement to the remaining pioneers that created a civil rights legacy when they were the first people to enter this now historic complex in 1963 and 1964.

Board members Gary Hawkins and Jean Castro are also the co-chairs for the Senior Citizens’ Committee which organized the event.

The highlight of the evening was the awarding of the 50th anniversary watches to the remaining first-move-ins of the cooperative. The well-appointed time piece is designed with a gold “twin pines” logo and roman numeral bezel.  The twin pines is the logo of cooperative housing used around the world.    Longstanding resident, Millie Bain, turned 95 this month and will celebrate 50 years of cooperative living at Rochdale Village on December 10, 2013.

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