Robert E. Cornegy, Jr. represents the 36th District, including the vibrant Brooklyn communities of Bedford Stuyvesant and northern Crown Heights in the New York City Council. He chairs the Council’s Committee on Small Business and was the lead sponsor of Avonte’s Law, a bill designed to improve school safety by increasing the number of audible alarms on public school doors.
In his role as Small Business Committee Chair, Council Member Cornegy has fought for the success of the industrial and manufacturing businesses and the “mom & pops” the city’s economy and communities rely on. His vision and advocacy led to the creation of Chamber on the Go, a City Council funded program, now housed in the Department of Small Business Services, which takes services to small businesses in all five boroughs. In addition, he was instrumental to expanding the City Council’s Industrial and Business Zones (IBZ) initiative, during a time when the essential funding was threatened and to ensuring that small businesses would have six months to adjust to the requirements of the city’s new Paid Sick Leave law. Council Member is the lead sponsor of Intro. 851-2015, a bill that aims to address the impact of gentrification by extending anti-harassment protections to commercial tenants.
Council Member Cornegy attended St John’s University, playing backup center for their historic 1984-5 Final Four team, and graduated from the University of Alabama, Birmingham. After college, Cornegy honed his personal value system of discipline, inclusion and teamwork across cultural lines while playing professional basketball in Israel and Turkey. After returning to the U.S., he earned a Master’s Degree in Organizational Management and became a credentialed alcoholism and substance abuse counselor, opening a residential treatment center for chemically dependent men. His work leading this service agency propelled him further into a community organizing role.
Immediately prior to being elected, Cornegy worked as a legislative policy analyst for the New York City Council. His work supported the Aging and Veterans committees and contributed to progressive initiatives, such as the creation of the Gun Violence Task Force. Cornegy was also an adjunct professor of marketing at Brooklyn College.
Cornegy also serves central Brooklyn as the District Leader of the 56th Assembly District and president of the Vanguard Independent Democratic Association (V.I.D.A.). In the City Council, Cornegy is a member of the Committees on Civil Service & Labor, Finance, Health, Housing & Buildings, and Public Safety and the Co-Chair of the Black, Latino and Asian Caucus.
Cornegy is the son of the late Reverend Dr. Robert E. Cornegy, Sr., pastor of Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Bedford Stuyvesant. He lives in Bedford Stuyvesant with his wife, Michelle. They are the proud parents of six children.