Generally Speaking: Borough history chief elected society president

Brooklyn’s official historian Ronald Schweiger was just elected as the 48th

president of the Society of Old Brooklynites, which dates back to when Brooklyn was an independent city and the third largest in the nation.

Schweiger, who is also the president of the Brooklyn College Alumni Association, joins a long list of distinguished Brooklynites who have served at the helm of the borough-wide civic organization. They have included former Brooklyn city mayors, members of Congress, state senators, banking and business executives, attorneys, newspaper publishers, military leaders and writers. Among their ranks are two highly regarded women, one a DAR regent and the other an ASCAP song writer and civic leader.

Schweiger, a retired school teacher, has been a life member of the society and a past member of the board of directors. He succeeds Ralph PerfettoBetsy Gotbaum. Back in 2001, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz appointed Schweiger to the non-salaried position of borough historian.

Other officers re-elected for another term were Michael SpinnerTed GeneralSherman SilvermanHolly FuchsLinda Orlando

Additionally, re-elected for three year terms on the society’s Board of Directors were Robert DanielsEllen HaywoodSylvia JordanWilhelmena KellyRalph PerfettoPeter Spanakos and James Tillmon.


The Battle of the Blondes! Two area high schools produced the musical play, Legally Blonde, on the same dates this past week. Both Shore Road schools, less than 15 blocks apart, had productions of the zany Broadway comedy based on the original movie starring Reese Witherspoon as Ellie Wood. At Fort Hamilton High School, it was directed and produced by English-drama teacher William Coulter and at Fontbonne Academy, it was directed by Susan Huizinga and produced by Sister Dolores Crepeau.

I’m simply amazed that Music Theater International — which issues permits, collects royalties and grants rights to schools for Broadway productions — would agree to allow two schools in the same neighborhood to hold the same play on the same dates.

What I think is that schools in this area should consider doing is setting up an informal clearing house so that similar conflicts don’t occur in the future. Nonetheless, both schools had marvelous renditions of the hit play, with sophomore Ashley Kelly playing the lead at Fontbonne, and senior Elizabeth Mulligan at Fort Hamilton.


Brooklyn Democrats for Change held its seventh annual dinner at the Dyker Beach Golf Course, 86th Street and Seventh Avenue. Club President Jonathan Yedin gave the opening remarks, and 64th AD Democratic Leader Kevin Peter Carroll emceed the program.

Honorees were Community Education Council 20 President and Community Board 11 Committee Chair Laurie WindsorJane Kelly and City Councilmember Vincent Gentile.

Among the VIPs on hand for the occasion were City Council Speaker and mayoral candidate Christine QuinnFrank SeddioScott StringerDomenic RecchiaDilia Schack and Mark DavidovichReshma Saujani, former State Senate candidate Andrew Gounardes and former Assembly candidate John Mancuso.


John Heyer IIJoseph Campo. He is the president and CEO of Grassroots Films, Inc., and executive producer of the documentary film, “The Human Experience.” His subject for the members’ only event will be Sharing Our Faith.


Author and webmaster for the website Forgotten New York Kevin Walsh was the guest speaker at the past monthly meeting of the Bay Ridge Historical Society.


A right, smart salute and congratulations to Chief Thomas Chan, who was recently promoted by Police Commissioner Ray Kelly from assistant chief of NYPD’s Brooklyn South command to head the NYPD’s Community Affairs Unit. He is the first Asian-American to reach the department’s two star rank.


To reach Ted General via the Internet, his e-mail address is:

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