Mr. President, Secretary Clinton, friends and neighbors, Varda has been a merchant in Chappaqua for 40 years and together we have raised our children from early childhood to become the purposeful accomplished adults they are.
President and Secretary Clinton I speak in praise of both of you for all that you have both done as examplars and residents over the past 15 years and before, to center the present generation of Chappaqua residents and indeed all Americans on the obligations of family and community toward our children. Hillary Clinton as first lady in 1996, 5 years before you moved to Chappaqua, you drew on your own and your husband’s experience in the small towns from which you came, to author , “It Takes a Village and Other Lessons Children Teach Us. This book has been the most important and widely read volume by the spouse of a president in our lifetimes.
Madame Secretary you distilled the essence of what a child needs to reach his or her potential through the ennobling efforts of not family alone but the inclusive input of all in a town or village. Your identification of the many salutary influences on life in Chappaqua may have led you and your family, exiting the White House years after the publication of your book, consciously or unconsciously, to settle in Chappaqua. We are proud to say the nurturing input in the children of this town is alive and well. And we are delighted that the education we afford our children, and our local high school, Horace Greeley, from which both of my children graduated, has been recognized as the best public high school our nation has to offer.
During this holiday season, amidst the gift giving and the parties, we hope that we all take a moment to reflect upon the real gifts that we impart to our children – the small town values from communities like this one that cultivate our children and enable them to grow into purposeful and caring citizens. Secretary Clinton your vision for the children continues to be taken to heart. You know that what a community puts into its children and that all they will give back to their town and country is a legacy from one generation to another. And we thank you for your contributions to the nation, to the state of New York, and to this small village.
Remarks by Dr. Roy Singer