Rita Joseph is a Brooklyn public school teacher and proud UFT member with a rich background in service, advocacy, and activism.
Her grandparents shaped much of her childhood, raising her on the importance of education. Her grandmother was a caretaker of local children for many years while her grandfather was a tailor. While her grandparents overcame many obstacles to provide for her, they pushed her to do better for herself. This led to Rita getting two master’s degrees and committing her life to educate the next generation of leaders to pass on the lessons of her grandparents.
Rita has deep roots in the community she is now running to represent in the 40th City Council District. She is an active member of the Holy Innocent Catholic Church and has created a partnership to put on a coat drive and annual Thanksgiving dinner for struggling families in the neighborhood. She has also led the way on numerous community events like toy drives, community street fairs, and after school programs with the support of local elected officials like Council Member Mathieu Eugene, Assembly Member Rodneyse Bichotte, and State Senator Kevin Parker.
In addition to community events, Rita has been a part of many important initiatives that help shape our district. She was appointed by State Senator Kevin Parker to serve as Chair of the Neighborhood Advisory Board and has been a part of the Citywide Participatory Budgeting Committee for the last 2 years, thanks to an appointment by Council Speaker Corey Johnson.
As an educator, Rita has seen the struggles and triumphs of her students and their families. She’s been able to support them by serving on the school leadership team as a COB Liaison and hosting an annual legislative breakfast at PS6. She’s also been able to provide for her school financially, securing hundreds of thousands of dollars each year for technological improvements that help thousands of children receive a better education, including capital funding from Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.
She is a proud public school graduate of the now-closed Sarah J. Hale High School. She holds a BS in Liberal Arts from St. Francis College and a dual Master’s in General and Special Education from Touro College. She currently lives in Prospect Lefferts Gardens raising her 4 children.
While Rita has been able to accomplish many things in a volunteer capacity, she believes she has even more to offer the district she calls home. Her experience has given her a unique perspective and taught her valuable lessons about what is needed for the future of the district. She’s ready to lead District 40 into the future.