‘I tend to question everything’ – River Journal Online – News for Tarrytown, Sleepy Hollow, Irvington, Ossining, Briarcliff Manor, Croton-on-Hudson, Cortlandt and Peekskill
Ossiningnew member of the city council Jennifer Fields-Tawil brings political, government and investigative training to his new position.
Fields-Tawil, a member of the Ossining City Democratic Committee, is currently the director of the state district office MP Sandy Galef. She previously worked as an investigator for government agencies and private companies.
His appointment runs until the end of 2022; the remaining three years of the four-year term will be voted on in November. She has already received her party’s endorsement to run for the rest of the term. City council members receive $12,206 per year.
Here’s a Q&A with the new member of city council – the only one of five officials who lives outside of Ossining village.
river log: Tell me a bit about your background.
Jennifer Fields-Tawil: I moved from New York to Ossining in 2003. I am married with two teenagers. I graduated from Bayside High School in Queens, earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and completed three years of study toward a master’s degree in public administration at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
RJ: You were named precisely because you live outside the village of Ossining. As the sole representative of the unincorporated part of the city, what will be your priorities?
Jennifer Fields-Tawil: In addition to residing in the unincorporated area, I own a condominium and intend to represent both constituencies. My initial focus will be to ensure that any future development is appropriate for the location and that area residents have a say in decision-making.
RJ: What led you to step away from your career as an investigator to join MP Galef’s team?
Champs-Tawil: At the time, I was in the process of closing my own investigative business, Synergy Investigative Solutions, LLC. I was having difficulty finding another local investigator position that would meet my family’s needs. As a result of my activity with the Democratic Committee of the town of Ossining, I learned that the position was vacant and I applied. It has been a wonderful experience for over seven years.
RJ: Can you briefly describe your experience as an investigator?
Champs-Tawil: It was an incredible and exciting time in my life that challenged everything one would think a 5ft tall Jewish woman should do in her career. I even had the opportunity to go undercover and do an early morning raid with the FBI. A big part of my job was to regulate certain industries to prevent the influence of organized crime. Thanks to the New York City Investigative Department, I was trained as a peace officer and carried a gun.
RJ: How will your experience as an investigator benefit city ratepayers now that you are on city council?
Champs-Tawil: I tend to question everything and don’t make decisions without careful thought and full consideration of all the facts.
RJ: What are your plans after Galef retires at the end of the year? Would you like to join Dana Levenbergshould she be elected to take Galef’s place?
Champs-Tawil: The future is full of possibilities.
RJ: Name one thing in particular that you like about living in Ossining.
Champs-Tawil: I love the Friday night concerts at Louis Engel Park.