Correction: Originally, this story did not include the endorsement of Cortland County Legislator Sandy Price. It has been corrected to include her endorsement of Leslie Danks Burke.

ITHACA, N.Y.—Ithaca Acting Mayor Laura Lewis has endorsed Leslie Danks Burke as the latter pursues the Democratic nomination for New York State Senate District 53.

Lewis said she was “thrilled” to endorse Danks Burke. It’s a departure from Lewis’ predecessor, Svante Myrick, who endorsed Danks Burke’s opponent Lea Webb in the race.

Webb and Danks Burke are the only two Democrats currently running for the nomination after Dr. Ammitai Worob dropped out of the race last month. Endorsements have been pouring in for both candidates—among them, Danks Burke has received support from New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli.

“I have known Leslie for years, and she always shows up, from her advocacy for reproductive healthcare to volunteering in areas as diverse as PTAs, regional economic development boards, the library, and Tompkins Cortland Community College,” Lewis said. “Even when no one’s watching, Leslie is there to share strength on a picket line, talk with a Girl Scout troop, or help out a food bank, and no one works harder than Leslie to make our communities inclusive, accessible, and economically vibrant.”

Lewis went on to say that she “deeply admires” Danks Burke’s work with the Trailblazers PAC, which endorsed and supported candidates across the political spectrum. Danks Burke also received support from five other Democratic officials this week: Cortland County legislator Sandy Price; Richard Driscoll, former Town of Newfield Supervisor; Pat Leary, former Ithaca Town Board member; Mark Robinson, former candidate for Groton Town Board; and Linda Woodard, Village of Cayuga Heights Mayor.

“Mayor Laura Lewis’s endorsement is a true honor, because she’s a 40-year Ithaca resident who understands the diverse community that Ithaca is, from the vibrant city to Cornell, from Fall Creek to Cayuga Lake, to the Southside and West Hill,” said Danks Burke. “I admire Laura’s nonstop work ethic and her deep care for this city, and I’m proud that she stands with our regional coalition for a new voice on the State Senate floor.”

Matt Butler

Matt Butler is the Managing Editor at the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached by email at