Skip To Main

Congresswoman Clarke’s Statement on the Passing of Basil Paterson

Brooklyn, N.Y. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement on the passing of the Honorable Basil Paterson, a leader in in the politics of New York City and New York State whose son, David Paterson, was the first African-American Governor of New York State.

“Basil Paterson was a trailblazer, and a proud son of a father from Carriacou in the Grenadines and a mother from Kingston, Jamaica. His contributions to the civil society we share today were considerable – as a civil rights activist, an attorney supporting the rights of workers, as a member of the New York State Senate, and as Deputy Mayor for Labor Relations, in which position he provided critical assistance in negotiating contracts that allowed New York City to avoid bankruptcy. As a member of the ‘Gang of Four’ with Manhattan Borough President Percy Sutton, Mayor David Dinkins, and Congressman Charles Rangel, he allowed African-Americans to become full participants in the politics of our city and state. 

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Basil Paterson. His legacy will remain a part of New York for the generations that will follow us. He will be deeply missed.”

U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke is a member of the House Committee on Small Business, Ethics, and Homeland Security, where she is the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies. She represents many neighborhoods in central and southern Brooklyn, NY which include Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, parts of Park Slope and Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.