A new chairman has been named to head Community Board 2, the official citizen advisory board that represents Hunts Point and Longwood.
Dr. Ian Amritt will replace Orlando Marin who served as chair for a little over a year before being tabbed by Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. this summer to serve as the Bronx representative on the city’s powerful City Planning Commission.
Amritt, 49, is the executive director of UNITAS, the non-profit organization located in The Point CDC building on Garrison Ave. that provides counseling to area high school students, and prepares students to counsel their own peers.
A psychiatrist with a specialty in forensics, Amritt has increasingly focused on issues concerning young people over the course of his career. He began his work in Hunts Point in 1986 as part of a consulting team counseling students, then after leaving to work nearer to his Brooklyn home in the 1990s, returned to the neighborhood to head up UNITAS in 2000. He has run the organization ever since.
Amritt has contributed to education, health and youth committees in his six years on the volunteer board, and, most recently, as first vice chair. He says he will emphasize youth and educational initiatives during his time as board chair, and will work toward establishing a Hunts Point/Longwood pilot program in which businesses can sponsor local schools and improve academic outcomes by investing part of their profits in the schools.
“We’re here for service and serve we shall,” Amritt says of committing extensive time to working on the board.
Amritt ran unopposed for the chairmanship. He will serve the rest of Orlando Marin’s original two-year term, to end in June of next year, when another election will be held.
Robert Crespo, who serves on the Economic Development Committee, was elected to take Amritt’s place as vice chair.