Lawrence election trustee candidate Steven Gottesman, Mayoral Candidate Sam Nahmias, and trustee candidate Aaron Felder

On Tuesday, June 18 there will be an election for mayor of the Village of Lawrence here in Nassau County.

In the context of what is going on nationally—with an historic election looming in November—there is a tremendous urgency to this election, and what may be more important than who you vote for is the fact that you actually make the effort to vote.

We are a relatively small village on the edge of Long Island and will be selecting new leadership on Election Day. For the several decades I have lived in Lawrence, most of the time Election Day came and went with most residents and voters not bothering to show up and cast their vote.

This year is different. This year Lawrence is not just having an election for new leadership but is about to experience a generational change that will lead our community into the future.

I’ve carefully considered our options and believe that when setting aside a few minutes to vote on June 18, you should cast your ballot for Sam Nahmias for mayor and Aaron Felder and Shlomo Gottesman for Village trustees. If they are victorious, they will join existing trustees Aroni Parnes and Tammy Roz, who will represent the full complement of the government of Lawrence.

Felder and Gottesman are running unopposed, but Mr. Nahmias is being challenged by long-time community activist and Lawrence Deputy Mayor, Paris Popack.

Lawrence Deputy Mayor Paris Popack and Cedarhurst Village Trustee Myrna Zisman at the 2024 L-C Memorial Day Parade

Ms. Popack has been a highly involved community leader. From her service as a trustee, to heading up the Lawrence Association for many years, to organizing the community Memorial Day parade, there is always a place for this level of community involvement, whether in elected office or not.

The Nahmias-Felder-Gottesman ticket, along with trustees Parnes and Roz, who have been in office for about a year, will bring a fresh, new outlook to Lawrence Village, and will set new priorities that are so vitally required as our Village continues to grow and expand.

Sam Nahmias and his wife Monica are philanthropists who are connected to the community on various levels. Paris Popack and her husband Joe (who I knew as Yossy for many years), are equally involved in the community and indeed Jewish community causes worldwide, just as Sam and his wife are.

So, as the poet W.H. Auden once said, “We are free to choose our paths, but choose we must.” And indeed, there are many additional choices that our elected leaders will have to deliberate on during the coming months and years.

The reality is there is an increasing demand for housing in Lawrence as well as the rest of the Five Towns that will only continue to grow as we move forward. At the same time, our streets in the Five Towns are jammed with traffic on the main arteries on a daily basis. We will have to deal with this increasing traffic headache in the near future. At the same time, our local government leaders will have to effectively interface with the leaders of the other towns and villages that border our community as traffic from one jurisdiction spills over to the next.

And then there is the all-important matter of getting out the vote. We have thousands of registered voters in Lawrence, but in recent elections, only a fraction of those people made the effort to come out and vote. It’s vital that everyone considers how much is at stake here and please cast their ballot.

This election is being watched in Nassau County, in Albany, as well as on the national level. The information that is being scrutinized by bureaucrats and politicians is whether or not our residents care enough about their representatives to cast their votes. They are watching us in both Albany and Washington, and the manner in which we and our institutions are treated in the future will largely depend on whether or not we make the effort to vote.

On that count, it may be a good thing this year that we have a contested mayoral election. This will hopefully motivate our residents to come out and vote on June 18 for the candidate they believe can best lead our Village into the future.

Our choice is Sam Nahmias for mayor and Aaron Felder and Shlomo Gottesman for trustees.

Trustee candidates Gottesman and Felder have deep roots in our community and a tradition of public service in their families. Aaron Felder’s father, Shimon, is a former mayor and a long-time trustee of the village. Shlomo Gottesman’s father, Moshe, a’h, was dean of the Hebrew Academy of Nassau County (HANC), and also the director of Camp Sdei Chemed International in Israel for 35 years.

Sam Nahmias, aside from running for mayor of Lawrence, is also the chairman of the Nassau County Bridge Authority, and a very active political activist who recently met with President Donald Trump at Mar-a-Lago in Florida.

A vote for these candidates will demonstrate your desire for a fresh start for Lawrence and a great future for all of us. Just as important as the candidate you vote for is the fact that you make the effort to come out and vote.

A Great Day in New York

It was a great day for a parade in New York City. Sunday was the Israel Day Parade and tens of thousands of people came out in full force to show their solidarity with the Jewish state.

First and foremost, the New York City Police Department did an extraordinary job keeping everyone safe and secure. The slow shuffling through a plethora of metal detectors was annoying, but apparently necessary considering the global circumstances.

It was a festive celebratory day with marching, singing, and dancing, led by a contingent of over 70 family members of the hostages still being held in Gaza for over eight months. Many of the marching groups, which included Jewish day schools, wore “Bring Them Home Now” dog tag necklaces and led calls for the release of the hostages. Yet, we are saddened by the slow but sure discovery of the bodies of many hostages as the IDF plumbs their way through Rafah.


Sunday was a day of mixed emotions while at the same time it was bright and sunny with adults and children coming together to enjoy a day while demonstrating our unity and support for Israel.

Our good friend, Harley Lippman, was Grand Marshal of the parade. We met Harley several times over the last year at Israel Heritage Foundation events and spent a week together with him recently in Israel. Harley is a fascinating man with great and important insight. He is a supporter and fighter for Israel and uses his extensive political connections to advocate for Israel, especially during these difficult and challenging times.

Great friends of Israel were there either on the reviewing stand or marching up 5th Avenue in the parade. They included Mayor Eric Adams marching with Eden Golan, who sang “October Rain,” Israel’s submission to the Eurovision Song Contest. Hers was by far a first-place caliber song though she finished in fifth place.

Also marching was WABC radio host Sid Rosenberg along with Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman, Lawrence mayoral candidate Sam Nahmias, and New York State Assemblyman Eric “Ari” Brown.

It was a beautiful, bright, sunny day tinged with sadness and poignancy as the families of the hostages marched with the hope that soon their personal and our national nightmare will come to an end.


Read more of Larry Gordon’s articles at Follow 5 Towns Jewish Times on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for updates and live videos. Comments, questions, and suggestions are welcome at and on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.


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