On January 1, all New Yorkers of note in politics, government, business, and entertainment could be seen on Ellis Island where they gathered for two historic inaugurations: Andrew Cuomo’s third as Governor, matching his father’s record, and Letitia James’s first as Attorney General. The newly sworn in James also made history as the first woman and first African-American to hold this third most powerful post in NYS. As a longtime supporter and friend of Tish James, MedReview’s CEO and President Joseph Stamm had a prime seat at the event.
The inaugural setting of Ellis Island was the Governor’s personal choice. Calling New York “the laboratory for the American experiment in democracy,” Cuomo told the crowds, “It all started here. We are 19 million people from every spot on the globe.” Washington’s “divide and conquer” approach to government is “not just anti-New York. This is anti-American.” Repeating the words inscribed on this country’s seal—E Pluribus Unum; Out of Many, One—Cuomo said, “That’s the concept that founded this nation. Bring all these different faces and people from all these different places together as one. I did my inaugural at Ellis Island just to make this point.”
“It was thrilling to be there not only as Tish James’s friend, but also as a New Yorker and the son of immigrants,” Stamm said. He had a second opportunity to celebrate with James at her private inauguration party held at John Jay College on January 6.