Sportspark Ribbon-Cutting: RIOC Divisiveness Strikes Again


No matter who gets kicked out, the scourge stays. RIOC divisiveness strikes another sour note, much like they did with the Hope Memorial in 2021. Sewing seeds of elitism, they invited only “…valued representatives of our community.” All Roosevelt Islanders contributed cash, but only a select few are welcome to “…an opening ceremony and ribbon cutting.”

by David Stone

The Roosevelt Island Daily News

“I guess I’m on a list,” one Roosevelt Islander who got the privileged email said. But who else is on it? Who gets to decide which “valued” individuals get blessed by RIOC?

After over two years of waiting and many more of paying RIOC’s bills, why are most residents snubbed by Team Haynes/Hochul?

If you didn’t get this, guess what… RIOC does not value you.

Full Disclosure: We did not get an invitation from Team RIOC.

On a funny note, one observer noted, “Whoever wrote this thinks Sportspark is IN RI, not ON RI…”

“We are pleased to announce the Grand Re-Opening of the renovated Sportspark here in Roosevelt Island!” the invitation reads.

The author is Akeem H. Jamal, Assistant Vice President, Communications & Public Affairs, who now lists his address as Blackwell House alongside his boss, Seldom Seen Shelton.

And this makes sense because the highly-paid rookie is just finding his way around the community and literacy.

  • Republished with Permission: The Roosevelt Island Daily News

  • RIOC Divisiveness Repeats Itself

    The state agency that never gets it wrong tried this before. When the Hope Memorial opened in July 2021, they limited invitations to an exclusive group. But, after anger flared, Team RIOC opened it up to everyone – but only if you sat on the grass.

    When Disabled Association president Wendy Hersh cut the ribbon for the Hope Memorial, Seldom Seen Shelton poked his head in from behind. He was valued by Team RIOC.

    They were more successful in keeping out “those people” when they opened the refurbished Youth Center. Not only did they exclude Residents Association President Rossana Ceruzzi, but they also rejected her at the door.

    Needless to say, all local media representatives were similarly banned.

    This may be Governor Hochul’s and Shelton Haynes’s preferred vision for RIOC, but it’s divisive. And it must stop.

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