Borough President Vito Fossella Empanels S.I. Committee to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the United States
Borough President Vito J. Fossella announced today that he is empaneling a committee of Staten Islanders to help begin planning for our borough’s celebration of the 250th anniversary of the United States. Staten Island will join many counties across America that have already started planning for this milestone event, commemorating the signing of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. There is in fact a United States Semiquincentennial Commission helping to raise awareness about the anniversary which will officially be celebrated on July 4, 2026.
He has named Jessica B. Phillips, CEO of Historic Richmond Town, as Chairperson of the committee. He has asked that an executive committee be established followed by a larger committee enveloping a mosaic of opinions from elected officials, history teachers, civic leaders and historians.
“Staten Island is a patriotic community with deep roots in our nation’s history,” said Borough President Fossella. “We remember that it was here, on September 11, 1776, that John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and Edward Rutledge met and negotiated with British Admiral Lord Howe, in a failed effort to stop the Revolutionary War. The Conference House is now one of the most celebrated historic sites in the United States. I am sure our borough will eagerly come together to plan ahead for celebrating this momentous and historic anniversary of our Nation’s birth.”
“In 2026, the United States will see the 250th year of its founding. This anniversary will be celebrated around the country,” said Jessica B. Phillips, CEO of Historic Richmond Town. “Over a third of the battles of the American Revolution were fought in New York State. Staten Island was a key instrument in the fight for independence. Staten Island will build a historic commemoration and celebration for this milestone in American democracy. It's an honor and privilege to chair this committee.”
Those who wish to submit comments and ideas to this committee can do so at America250SI@historicrichmondtown.org.
"As the author of two history books on Staten Island, I am excited for this commemoration,” said Councilman Joseph Borelli. “Few Staten Islanders are aware that our borough served as the front line of the conflict from 1776 to 1783, as was the settling of an intense political drama during its buildup. It is a story I enjoy telling, and a worthy milestone to celebrate."
“I applaud Borough President Fossella for organizing the committee celebrating the United States Semiquincentennial,” said Councilman David Carr. “Staten Island played an integral role during the Revolutionary War. Our Borough is deserving of having festivities commemorating the Declaration of Independence.”
"Love of country is at the very core of our borough and our great City,” said Councilwoman Kamillah Hanks. “I commend Borough President Fossella for taking charge in the commemoration of the 250th Anniversary of the United States and I am confident that Jessica B. Phillips will lead the Committee successfully to celebrate this significant occasion."
“Staten Island is a microcosm of America in so many ways. We are a diverse borough, with people from across the globe calling Staten Island home. We have urban centers and we have rural landscapes. We are a borough of tradition and also a borough where new cultures and celebrations pop up each year,” said District Attorney Michael McMahon. “Yet perhaps most importantly, we are a borough of patriots, who have an unbridled passion for all that America has been, continues to be, and for the promises still unfulfilled. From the infancy of our nation, Staten Island has played a role in shaping America into what it is today, and I could not be more proud that our ever-spirited borough is embarking on a mission to make sure we celebrate a quarter millennium of the United States of America in true Staten Island fashion.”
“I am excited for the formation of this committee as we prepare for this momentous anniversary,” said Assemblyman Michael Cusick. In a quarter of a millennium, the United States of America has become a global leader and a symbol of the free world. I look forward to celebrating both our past and our future as a nation.”
“Staten Island is rich with Revolutionary War history, from its British occupation to the American patriots who worshipped at the Reformed Protestant Dutch Church of Port Richmond, to the peace talks that occurred at the Conference House in Tottenville,” said Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis. “Staten Island is a deeply patriotic community with a strong love for America. I can think of no better place, or people, to help commemorate the 250th Anniversary of our nation’s independence, celebrate the present day, and look forward to a more prosperous future."
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