SCHENECTADY — Former Schenectady City Council leader Margaret “Peggy” King will be named to the Schenectady County Legislature seat opened last month by the death of Karen Johnson.
“She has lots of experience in the legislative process and in achieving compromise,” said Legislature Majority Leader Gary Hughes, D-Schenectady.
The Legislature will hold a caucus to select Johnson’s replacement at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the legislative chambers, and swear-in King ahead of the lLgislature’s monthly meeting, which starts at 7 p.m.
King lives in the city’s historic Stockade neighborhood, as did Johnson, who died June 10 after a long illness. Johnson was also Schenectady’s first female mayor from 1985 to 1992.
“Karen Johnson was a friend and a person for whom I had the greatest respect,” King said. “No one can take her place but I will do my best to be worthy of her seat.”
King is a retired student development administrator at Schenectady County Community College, and remains on the college’s Board of Trustees.
King was involved in the City Council over the course of 20 years, serving on the council from 1996-2002 and again from 2006 to 2015, when she retired. She served as council president for part of that time.
When she retired from the council, King said she had no intention of returning to public office. “However, the loss of Karen, my 16 years of service on the City Council, and my 37 years of living in the Stockade and [County Legislature] District 1 prompted me to rethink that decision and to step forward to serve one more time,” she said.
King, who was born in Gloversville, retired from SCCC in 2010 after working there for 28 years.
Since then, King has remained active in Democratic politics, and has served on many non-profit boards, including Habitat of Schenectady County, the Schenectady Symphony Orchestra, and the Sunnyview Rehabilitation Hospital Foundation.
Under the county’s rules, King must run for the seat she is appointed to in a special election in November. If she wins, she would serve the remaining two years in Johnson’s term.
“Community service has always been important to me and I have served on the boards of many organizations in Schenectady,” King said. “Those years of service can only help me in my role as a county legislator.”
County legislators are part-time, earning $14,093 annually.