Monday, November 8, 2010


The election for Mayor and Trustees for the Village of Mastic Beach is coming up, and I have reached out to the many candidates running for various positions. For the next couple of weeks I hope to get responses from them so I could feature them here, and have everyone become familiar with the candidates. This is the third installment of "Meet The Candidate", featuring Grace Ruffo who is running for Village Trustee.

1) Tell us a bit about yourself. How long have you lived in the area?
I am originally from Ridgewood, Queens. My parents purchased their home here in 1972and I spent every weekend and summer out here enjoying the beauty of the suburb and the pristine waters of the south bay. I recall getting ready to come out here every Friday night, stopping at Skippy’s on Montauk Highway to grab a bite to eat and getting a preview of what was playing at the drive in movie theater across the street. Every wonderful memory of my childhood reflects back to my home in Mastic Beach. In 1993, my husband Joseph (a lifelong resident of Shirley & currently Captain of the Neighborhood Watch Team) and I moved out here permanently. I attended St. John’s University and majored in Business & Computer Science. I started my career on Wall Street 24+ years ago and hold a Series 7 & 63 Securities license. I am currently employed with one of the world’s major securities firms in the investment industry.

2) Why did you decide to run and were you for or against the village?
I decided to run for two reasons, first and foremost, my Dad. My dad passed away 18 years ago and I recall how much he loved it out here. As a child one summer I asked him why we don’t go on vacations as all my friends do and his response was “Why pay for Paradise when we have it in our own backyard?”. Those words I have held dear to my heart. By running for Trustee, I can accomplish this by bringing back paradise he once knew and make him proud. In turn, I can also give back to the community that gave me a wonderful and memorable childhood. In regards to whether I was for or against the village, I guess the honest answer would be – I was pro-ish. The explanation of that term is, when the idea of incorporating a village was announced, I was extremely excited that we can finally steer the destiny of this community. But as we neared the election, instead of seeing this community unite, I saw it dividing more and more. I will not say that I was against the village, but I did not like what the “incorporation” was doing to this community.

3) What do you believe your responsibilities are as a trustee?
Unite what has been divided. I want to be the advocate and representative for all residents. Residents have a right to a village that is responsive to and understands their needs. And I can promise that if elected, I will be diligent, creative and thorough in finding and implementing the best possible solutions to the problems and challenges facing Mastic Beach today and in the future by working with my fellow Trustees and Mayor as well as, town, county and state officials to accomplish this. We need to change the perception that people have of Mastic Beach.

4) What outside experience do you bring that can be applicable to the position?
I have 24+ years financial background, I have built successful long term relationships with fortune 500 corporations and high net worth clients. I am also on the Board of Directors as Secretary for the Osprey Park Civic Association. My desires, integrity and commitment to make a difference, for the residents of Mastic Beach Village coupled with my professional experience equips me with what I firmly believe are the necessary skills to meet the challenges of keeping the cost of running a village contained while providing quality essential services.

5) What do you see as the positives of Mastic Beach, and what are the negatives?
Mastic Beach has many positives! We are a waterfront community! We have the Great South Bay surrounding us, the William Floyd Estates and many good hard working people. The negatives are that we do have the blighted homes and code violation issues, but I believe the negative perception everyone has outside of Mastic Beach is overly exaggerated. I feel with the right people elected – we can change all these negatives into positives.

6) How do you envision the Village of Mastic Beach in 5 years?
Call me a dreamer – I envision the Village of Mastic Beach to be a pristine waterfront village. A village with well-kept homes occupied with year round residents as well as summer residents. A downtown area with cafes, quaint shops and nightlife. And most importantly - an area where the north and southend unite and celebrate many village events together with their families. A Village every resident can be proud of.



Anonymous said...

How can Ms Ruffo be a village trustee in a village that she is ashamed to admit she lives in? Her drivers lic. states she lives in Ospery Point, NY.