Hempstead Town Councilman Gary Hudes of Levittown was re-elected to represent the Town of Hempstead's Sixth Councilmanic District in November 2009, where he has served since his election in 2000. He also served as a council member from July 1999 to December 1999.
Long committed to community improvement, Mr. Hudes serves as the Revitalization Coordinator for the Levittown-Island Trees Turnpike Revitalization Project, a $12 million construction and beautification program of Hempstead Turnpike, involving the joint efforts of NY State, Nassau County and the Town of Hempstead.
Deeply committed to quality of life issues, Mr. Hudes has spearheaded legislation to increase fines imposed upon graffiti vandals, shorten the time it takes to get high grass cut on residential properties and increased options for legal two family dwellings from mother/daughter to joint sibling occupancy.
He initiated the S.L.O.W (Speed Limit Odometer Warning) Program which helps to reduce the amount of cars speeding down our local streets. He also initiated "Operation Wheelchair" which is a program that collects and distributes gently used wheelchairs to needy seniors and disabled individuals. Also, he introduced the Town of Hempstead Community Presentation Program entitled "The Town of Hempstead and You" which informs community groups about the many services available to the residents of the community from the Town of Hempstead. In his efforts to really bring government to the people in their own neighborhoods, Mr. Hudes initiated "GARY On The Go" meetings to give residents a chance to meet one on one in his mobile community office that travels from neighborhood to neighborhood in his councilmanic district.
As part of the Councilman's commitment to the environment, he has assisted in bringing recycling programs to the Levittown, Island Trees and East Meadow School Districts. In addition, he has personally delivered more than 10,000 bins to residents to save them from having to pick one up at the Sanitation facilities in Merrick, only open during business hours, when most people work.
With his long standing commitment to young people, Mr. Hudes has assisted and mentored dozens of young men working on Eagle Scout projects, provided classes, workshops and seminars to hundreds of High School and Middle School students on government, business skills and community issues and has worked with students as a youth advisor. As part of his commitment to the overall health and well being of young people, Mr. Hudes was instrumental in bringing the "Check It Out" program to the school districts. This vitally important health education program offered in conjunction with East Meadow Hadassah and LIJ North Shore Hospital was presented to all senior girls and boys to raise their level of awareness regarding breast and testicular cancer.
Owner and president of a jewelry business in Bellmore Village, Councilman Hudes has devoted a great deal of his time to help small businesses grow and prosper. Mr. Hudes recently served as president of Nassau County's largest business organization, The Nassau Council of Chamber of Commerce, which represents the interests of 6,000 small businesses. As president, he instituted a community partnership with Hofstra University that established an education program for small businesses throughout the county. As president of the Bellmore Chamber of Commerce, Hudes spearheaded a pilot program for downtown revitalization, which garnered three national awards and became the catalyst for downtown revitalization projects throughout the region. As a result of his commitment to small business, Mr. Hudes was also selected as the New York State "Small Business Advocate of the Year" by Governor George Pataki.
Presently, he serves as Chairman of the Nassau County Graffiti Task Force, and has directed the cleanup of approximately 4,000 locations. He is an active board member of the Nassau County Firefighters Museum at Mitchel Field and serves on the Levittown School District's PTA Nutrition Committee for Children. He is also a member of LIPA's Clean Energy Advisory Panel. In addition, Mr. Hudes, is a member of Kiwanis and Lions Clubs, and has served as publicity director for the "Nassau County Strawberry Festival for Charity" Committee since 1991, and chairman of the Bellmore Lions Club's "Comedy for Charity".
Councilman Hudes' efforts on behalf of the community have been recognized with numerous awards and honors, including being named Year 2000 "Small Businessperson of the Year" by the Nassau Council of Chambers of Commerce; "Man of the Year" and then Honorary Life Member by the Nassau County Shields; "Man of the Year" by the School for Language and Communication Development; "Citizen of the Year" by the Bellmore Knights of Columbus; and "Small Businessman of the Year" by the Chamber of Commerce of the Bellmores. In addition, Mr. Hudes has received awards from the Vietnam Veterans of America, Nassau County PBA, New York State Police PBA, the Nassau Police Conference, Nassau County Detectives Association and the Bellmore Kiwanis Club. He is an "Honorary Life Member" of the Levittown PTA, an "Honorary Member" of Levittown Fire Department and "Honorary Member" of the Nassau County Detectives Association. Other honors include receiving the Nassau County Police Commissioner's Award for Outstanding Contributions to Community Safety. Councilman Hudes was named a 2002 honoree by the State of Israel Bonds. In November 2004 he was selected by the LI Works Coalition for the Workforce Builders Award in recognition of his efforts with schools to provide students with outstanding school to career experience. In April 2005, Councilman Hudes was honored by the Community Reform Temple of Westbury for his contributions to the betterment of the Temple and the community. In August 2008, Councilman Hudes was selected as an honoree by the New York State Trooper PBA Signal 30 Benefit Fund. In 2010 Councilman Gary Hudes was selected to be the Grand Marshal for the Levittown L.E.A.D.D. (Levittown Education Against Destructive Decisions) Annual Walk. The Councilman has served as New York State Vice Chairman of the TOYS FOR TOTS program for the last 10 years. Councilman Hudes is the recipient of the 2010 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Chamber of Commerce of the Bellmores for his profound positive effect on the Chamber and the community.
Born in the Bronx, Councilman Hudes is a cum laude graduate of Montclair State University in New Jersey. He and his wife, Sheree, have three children.
Councilman Hudes represents the residents of the Sixth Councilmatic District of the Town of Hempstead which includes Levittown, North Bellmore, North Merrick and North Wantagh; and portions of East Meadow, Bethpage, Merrick, Seaford and Wantagh.