ASTORIA — Change is on the way for Queens Community Board 1 — which covers Astoria and parts of Woodside and Long Island City — as both its longtime district manager and its chairman are stepping down.
District Manager Lucille Hartmann and Chairman Vinicio Donato presided over their last monthly board meeting Tuesday night, when the pair was honored with plaques and accolades by several local elected officials.
Hartmann, who's held her post since 2008 and was involved with the board for decades before that, will work her last day in July. The board is currently interviewing candidates to replace her.
Donato, a former teacher who joined CB1 in 1972 and became its chairman in 1976, will be replaced in the interim by fellow board member George Stamatiades. Nominations and a vote for a new chairperson will take place in September, he said.
"I'm 81, and it's time to give someone else a chance," said Donato, whose other stints in public service included serving on the board of the Museum of the Moving Image, Elmhurst Hospital Center and the Queens Museum, among other institutions.
Hartmann joined CB1 in 1978, she said, taking a brief hiatus in 1985 to work for the Mayor's Office. She returned to the board in 1988 and became district manager seven years ago.
"It's time to do different things in my life," she said of her decision to move on from the post. Her favorite part of the gig was being able to make a difference, no matter how small, she said.
"Usually it's the little things, when somebody calls and says, 'Thank you so much for helping me,'" she said. "It's the people who call and you're able to help them, you know, get through the system."