Democrat Amber Adler to Challenge for Inna Vernikov’s Council Seat

By Reuvain Borchardt

BROOKLYN — Democrat Amber Adler announced her candidacy Monday for the 48th City Council District, becoming an early 2023 challenger for the seat held by Republican Inna Vernikov, almost a year before primaries will be held next June.

“I am running for City Council to deliver the measurable results that our community needs,” Adler told Hamodia,  saying her platform is based on “safety, unity and prosperity.”

“To support my plan, I will allocate funding that precisely matches these goals and will generate the greatest return on investment,” Adler said. “I will extend my base of existing partnerships to bring new resources and careers into the community. In addition to this, I will strategically develop opportunities by introducing new legislation that can protect and truly serve residents, such as a pilot program that will pay for qualifying homeowners to make security upgrades and additional policy that will begin to uplift the struggling working class.”

A native Ohioan, Adler began her career in politics while in Ohio University, and worked on projects for three mayors in the Buckeye State.

Adler was raised in an irreligious home, but she moved to New York City 20 years ago, and became Orthodox. She has lived in the Midwood area for the past 15 years.

Adler has not had a government job in New York, though she was a paid staffer on Councilman Chaim Deutsch’s 2017 reelection campaign. She has also worked as chief of staff for the International Center for Autism Research and Education, director of communications for Friends of Ariel University, and founded the non-profit Our Life in 2017, which has offered product giveaways and held community based seasonal events such as a Chanukah Celebration and an Autumn Festival. She also chairs Neighborhood Advisory Board 15.

Adler is perhaps best-known in the neighborhood for attending community and political events with her two sons, 10 and 8 years old, holding colorful homemade posters, advocating for their positions on the issue of the day.

“I teach my children the concept of tikkun olam through civic engagement,” says the candidate. “My children carried their first homemade signs at a rally — years ago — as they sat in their double stroller. Through this experience-based learning, my children understand that they have the power to make a positive impact.”

Adler, 38, will offer what she refers to as a “middle of the road Democrat” alternative to Vernikov, 37, a conservative Republican.

Adler was one of five Democrats to vie for the 48th Council seat in 2021, finishing third in that primary. Vernikov, the sole Republican in the race, dominated in the general election, winning around 64% of the vote over conservative Democrat Steven Saperstein.

The district currently includes neighborhoods such as Midwood, Homecrest, Sheepshead Bay and Coney Island, though the new district lines won’t be finalized for another few months.  

Political insiders who spoke with Hamodia believe that regardless of the final lines, Vernikov will be the strong favorite in this heavily conservative, pro-Trump district. Adler is the first Democrat to declare for the district, and the race is not expected to attract the fierce interest and competition from Democrats that the 2021 race did.

But Adler believes she can prevail.

“I am the only candidate who can beat the incumbent,” she said. “I have steady support throughout the district and additional support from community leaders and other residents in the areas surrounding it.”

Adler is endorsed by Democratic Assemblywoman Mathylde Frontus, and Democratic District Leaders Melissa Skarlz and Jacqui Painter.

“Amber is a tireless fighter for our communities and believes in bringing people together,” said Frontus. “I trust her leadership to address the many issues facing southern Brooklyn families during these uncertain times.” 

The primary election is June 27, 2023. The general election is November 7, 2023.

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