Shapiro throws hat into Tompkins County Legislature ring

Tompkins Weekly Staff

Another newcomer is throwing their hat into the ring to run for Tompkins County Legislature.

Photo Provided
David Shapiro with his wife, Pamela, and one of his three sons, Jeremiah, at the Women’s March in Ithaca. He has announced his candidacy for the 3rd District seat on the Tompkins County Legislature.

David Shapiro has announced his intention to run for the 3rd District seat currently being served by Legislator Carol Chock; Chock has announced she will not run for re-election to the seat. He will square off in a Democratic primary with Henry Granison, who previously announced his intention to run for the seat.

A husband and father of three sons, Shapiro said his priorities include increased access to affordable and high quality child care, Universal Pre-K, a living wage and pay equity, crime diversion and prevention strategies and a single payer health care option in New York. He added that he wants to work for a government that treats its residents with compassion and supports healthy development of children and economic security for all adults.

“I know all too well the financial stressors that come with raising children and finding affordable care,” Shapiro said in a prepared statement. “I have also come to understand that for many people living and working in Tompkins County – with or without a family – the financial pressure to afford basic needs is overwhelming and it is further compounded by stagnant wages. I want to be part of a solution that helps everyone in Tompkins County to have financial security.”

In addition to serving as president and chief executive officer of Family & Children’s Service of Ithaca, he has been a part of local nonprofit boards and committees, including the Mental Health Association of Tompkins County, the Tompkins County Community Mental Health Services Board, the United Way of Tompkins County and the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce.

Shapiro said he first began considering public service while studying for his master’s degree in Public Administration. Since obtaining his degree, he has overseen a range of social service organizations, and developed skills in fiscal management, program development and strategic planning. Other initiatives Shapiro highlighted his connection to include being a part of the committee work that led to the creation of “The Ithaca Plan: A Public Health and Safety Approach to Drugs and Drug Policy,” and participating in start-up efforts that led to the incorporation of Love Living at Home, a new local nonprofit aimed at supporting older adults so they can continue to live independently in their community.

“I have considered public service for much of my adult life, but I never seemed to have the calling,” he said in a statement. “It wasn’t until I started understanding how that calling can be realized in local politics that I saw the path for how I wanted to be involved.
“My wife and I are raising three sons in the Belle Sherman neighborhood and feel blessed for all this community has offered us. I want to show my boys my passion for public service and teach them the value in building community,” Shapiro added. “The priorities I will have in local government are not for them, but it is because of them that I have made my focus all the children and people of Tompkins County.”

That was when he decided to join the Democratic party after many years without party affiliation.
“I have only ever voted for Democratic, then Working Family, candidates, but my attitude towards party affiliation was shaped by my distaste of the lack of collaboration that takes place when party lines are drawn,” Shapiro said in a statement. “Democrats must convince voters that we are the party for working families and adults. We must convince voters that it is the Democratic Party that has been fighting for equity and inclusion, economic security, environmental protections and a reformed criminal justice system.”

For more information about his campaign, visit Shapiro’s website at or his Facebook page at
– – –
David Shapiro is the latest in a number of Tompkins County residents who have announced their intention to run for the Legislature in the fall. Tompkins Weekly will be presenting their stories in the coming weeks and months to provide voters the opportunity to make the most informed decision when they go to the polls in September and November.