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    Melissa Mark-Viverito

    Speaker of the New York City Council
    New York City Council
    250 Broadway Suite 1856
    New York, NY 10007

    Melissa Mark-Viverito has been the speaker of the New York City Council since early January 2013, making her one of the most powerful people in city government.

    She rose through the ranks of the council beginning with her election in 2005 to represent parts of East Harlem, Randall and Ward islands, and the South Bronx. Before that, she was active in local labor unions and on Community Board 11 in East Harlem, where Mark-Viverito lives.

    An outspoken liberal generally allied with Mayor Bill de Blasio, Mark-Viverito tends to favor the views of tenants and local activists when it comes to real estate issues in New York. She has called, for instance, for a ban on repeated buyout offers to tenants from landlords, labelling it a form of harassment. She has also clashed with de Blasio over rezonings in predominantly manufacturing areas.

    Mark-Viverito was born in 1969 in Puerto Rico, and came to New York for college at Columbia and a masters in public administration from Baruch College.