Four years after he left Bill Thompson hanging, in favor of Mayor Bloomberg, Hank Sheinkopf is back in the car with Bill Thompson. In key move, the Thompson campaign announced the hiring of Sheinkopf, 63 (now Rabbi Sheinkopf, after he received his ordination from Rabbi Yaroslavsky of Kfar Chabad), as a senior strategist, working together with team Thompson’s chief strategist Jonathan Prince.
“There was a time when he certainly was not happy with me, but there’s a larger issue involved, and the larger issue is getting him to Gracie Mansion,” Sheinkopf told The Daily News. “I’m emotionally very moved that he would want me back and working with him, and I hope that I can help to make him the next mayor of the city of New York.
In a Jewish Week interview with Adam Dickter, Hank Sheinkopf called himself “a warrior,” saying both his chosen vocations, rabbi and political consultant, required a love of fighting.
The Thompson campaign also announced the hiring of John Collinsr, a former staffer for Anthony Weiner, as Communications Director, and Amber Greene as Policy Director.
Thompson also brought on more Obama veterans, including Senior Advisor Karine Jean-Pierre, who’s worked on both the campaign side—helping run battleground state ops— and in the White House. Another ex-Obama staffer, Will Leaverton, who ran GOTV ops, will serve as Thompson’s field director. Deputy Campaign Manager Frank Thomas, who managed Rep. Kathy Hochul’s re-election bid last year, and Political Director Kim Ramos, a strategist and lawyer with a network of contacts particularly among elected Latinos in the city and state Legislatures.
“We are proud to be building an experienced team that will aggressively campaign in every community in every corner of the city,” said Prince. “New Yorkers have benefited from Bill’s career in public service, including his leadership of the Board of Education and his successful tenure as the City Comptroller. As Mayor he will use his experience and leadership to deliver for all New Yorkers.”
Incidentally, Rabbi Yaroslavsky, who gave Rabbi Sheinkopf his smicha, speaks no English, and so Sheinkopf completed his exam in Hebrew, which he has been studying at home on the Upper West Side.
“I studied very hard,” Sheinkopf told Adam Dickter, “I had to learn the four portions of the Shulchan Orach.”
So now you can ask Rabbi Sheinkopf which candidate to vote for and whether or not you can eat your chicken.
Yori Yanover contributed to this report.