PEEKSKILL— In a special convention held Wednesday evening, the Peekskill Democratic City Committee nominated Peekskill native Vivian Cyndi McKenzie to run for the seat vacated by Don Bennett who resigned earlier this month, according to a press release from committee chairwoman Marina Ciotti.
McKenzie was born in Peekskill to Walter and Lula Bridgewater. She attended Peekskill city schools and graduated from the State University of New York at Binghamton with a bachelor’s degree in management. She worked in the insurance industry for 27 years as a claims adjuster, fraud adjuster, special investigator and territory sales manager for corporations including Hanover Insurance, GMAC and Allstate.
She was one of the founding partners of Bridge E’s Place, a soul food tak- out restaurant she owned with her sisters. After closing the restaurant she continued in the food service industry with her Soul Food Mobile Food Truck. In 2010 she purchased the popular Kathleen’s Tea Room, an English-style tea room on Main St. in Peekskill. In 2012 she left the insurance industry to run her business full time.
McKenzie serves on the board of the Business Improvement District, was a Girl Scout troop leader for more than eight years and participates in the P.I.E.S Program at Peekskill High School. She is a member of Park Street A.M.E. Zion Church and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.
She is married to Eric McKenzie; they have three children and one grandchild.