Dina Long, Mayor of Seabright, NJ
As President Obama tours New Jersey today, we also have New Jersey on our minds. This week of Sandy's devastation was notable for us as we watched municipal leaders spring into action all over our nation. We applaud all of them, regardless of party, for their tireless work and their commitment to the safety and well-being of their constituents. But while Mayor Bloomberg was dominating the airwaves and Mayor Booker was dominating on twitter, we were watching for the unsung heroes.
Thanks to Mayor Dina Long's twitter feed @seabrightmayor, and facebook page we know that is not true - - and her constituents know it also. But we also know Sea Bright is a scene of devastation, and that the popular ocean front clubs in this resort community are simply gone.
Today, as residents were trying to return, but were held back because of a dangerous gas leak, Mayor Long posted updates, urged residents to exercise patience, and provided photos of the community. Thanks to her, residents knew that while the clubs are gone, and that damages are "catastrophic", homes are still standing.
Before the storm, the Mayor personally made calls to residents urging them to evacuate. While not all followed her advice, it appears all 1412 residents of Sea Bright survived Sandy's wrath.
Less than a year ago, Mayor Long was photographed in rubber boots outside her flooded home, as she looked ahead to flood mitigation infrastructure work that was proposed for her community. The images of her community today are far more shocking, and the work that she faces, is far greater. But we trust she is up for the challenge.
DMO applauds our DMO of the Month, Mayor Dina Long, and all the elected officials in this country today who are wearing wading boots and gloves, and who are providing care and comfort and much needed information to their constituents.