Claire Cousin

Claire Cousin

State House, District 106, NY

2024 Endorsement

Claire, the daughter of a taxi driver and a speech pathologist, comes from a working-class background. As a single mother at the age of seventeen, she faced numerous challenges, including dropping out of high school and relocating to public housing in Hudson. To support herself and provide for her family, Claire took on various odd jobs such as afterschool programs, domestic violence services, and home healthcare. Despite these obstacles, she managed to obtain her GED and an AmeriCorps fellowship. Balancing community college alongside her responsibilities as a full-time worker and mother proved to be a difficult juggling act.

Claire's life took a significant turn during a Hudson Common Council meeting in 2013. On this night, she passionately spoke against reducing basketball court hours for teenagers, which led to her crossing paths with members from a local organization focused on assisting Hudson's Black youth. Recognizing her dedication and drive, they swiftly welcomed her as one of their most active leaders. Inspired to tackle the housing crisis in her community, Claire co-founded the Hudson/Catskill Housing Coalition. Serving as its executive director, she tirelessly advocates for affordable and stable housing options for all residents.

Currently, Claire is proudly serving her second term in the Columbia County Board of Supervisors, a monumental achievement as the first Black woman to be elected to the body. In this role, she has successfully secured additional funding for affordable housing initiatives and played a pivotal role in passing crucial criminal justice legislation. Claire's unwavering commitment to her community and her tenacity in the pursuit of equitable opportunities make her an inspiring and influential figure within Columbia County.