Carroll Gardens

Brooklyn’s CB6 bouncing back after District Manager Hammerman takes a leave

Board considers repercussions in perplexing case

May 12, 2017 By Mary Frost Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Community Board 6 District Manager Craig Hammerman. File photo by Mary Frost

Long-time Community Board 6 District Manager Craig Hammerman will be taking a medical leave for 60 days, beginning on May 17th, CB6 Chair Sayar Lonial told the Brooklyn Eagle.

Hammerman, the mainstay of CB6 for more than 20 years, was arrested two times about a month ago on charges of stalking and harassing an ex-girlfriend.

As district manager, Hammerman has represented the neighborhoods of Carroll Gardens, Cobble Hill, Gowanus, Park Slope and Red Hook since 1990, and has been honored by various civic and charitable organizations.

“The Finance, Personnel and Law committee has held three meetings and we have spoken to the New York City Law Department,” Lonial said at the general board meeting Wednesday evening. “As a committee we are considering what, if any, actions should be taken and, of course, we are working to ensure that the day to day operations of Brooklyn Community Board 6 are being performed. The FPL committee is reviewing all issues with regards to the district manager of BKCB6, including how these incidents have affected job performance, in addition to reviewing job performance in general.”

Lonial said that CB6 has a long history of thoughtfully representing the community and much of that is due to the hard work of board members and staff, including Hammerman.

“We must let the legal process take its course,” he said.

Lonial added that he was “very appreciative of our district manager’s request for a leave of absence during this undoubtedly stressful time for him.” (See his full statement below.)

According to court papers, Hammerman was arrested on March 26 and charged with stalking and harassment after downloading his ex-girlfriend’s Uber account onto his phone and using this information to locate her at a Brooklyn hotel He allegedly asked for her room number and tried to speak with her.

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He was also arrested in early April after allegedly violating an order of protection by sitting next to the woman in a Park Slope bar and telling her he had been following her for her own safety.

Hammerman’s attorney Joyce David told the Eagle that Hammerman says he is not guilty of the charges.

David claimed that the ex-girlfriend, whose name was redacted in court papers, was erratic and was “playing” Hammerman.

“We will be fighting these charges vigorously,” she said.

Hammerman will be appearing in court on June 9.

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Full statement by CB6 Board Chair Sayar Lonial to members regarding Hammerman’s leave:

“I would like to take a moment to update you on the statement I made last month regarding our District Manager.  The Finance, Personnel and Law committee has held 3 meetings and we have spoken to the New York City Law Department.  As a committee we are considering what, if any, actions should be taken and, of course , we are working to ensure that the day to day operations of Brooklyn Community Board 6 are being performed.  The FPL committee is reviewing all issues with regards to the District Manager of BKCB6, including how these incidents have affected job performance, in addition to reviewing job performance in general.

Brooklyn Community Board 6 has a long history of thoughtfully representing our community and much of that is due to the hard work of each of you, your predecessors and of course the Board staff, including our District Manager.  Let me remind each of you, as I stated last month, we must let the legal process take its course.

With all of that said, our Board is a public forum and we are at our strongest when we have the trust of the community.  Although the FPL committee can recommend a range of disciplinary actions, any such action would require a motion that would have to come to the Full Board for a vote.

I am very appreciative of our District Manager’s request for a leave of absence during this undoubtedly stressful time for him.  During this time, I am asking that all members and especially committee chairs pitch in to support Liza, Sarah, Ty and others that help out in the office.  Over the last few months, I have requested that our motions and resolutions take on a much more descriptive nature than our reliance on letters previously written that presented the Boards position/vote to City agencies.  Community Board 6 letters to the appropriate City agencies informing them of CB6 decisions are significant as they represent the hard work of Board members and should, in truth, reflect the discussion and votes that take place at committee and at the full board.  I am once again asking that those who take minutes at the committee meetings and committee chairs to be extremely clear in motions and resolutions.

The FPL committee will continue to meet, and either Jerry Armer, the committee chair, or I will continue to report on our work.  This will be the only public statement that I will make on this topic at this time and I urge each of you to do whatever you think is right for not only yourself but the Board at large.”

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