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'Mayor Of Harlem' Crowned By Neighborhood Ice Cream Shop

Patch logo Patch 4/20/2021 Nick Garber
a man and a woman standing in front of a building: Louis Johnson (right) was named Mayor of Harlem, while Amir Figueroa (left) will hold the title of Honorary Mayor. © Courtesy of Sugar Hill Creamery Louis Johnson (right) was named Mayor of Harlem, while Amir Figueroa (left) will hold the title of Honorary Mayor.

HARLEM, NY — A neighborhood ice cream shop's effort to name a "Mayor of Harlem" has come to an end, with one winner being crowned and another person being given an honorary title.

Amir Figueroa, co-leader of the free-running collective Harlem Run, won the competition after weeks of voting at Sugar Hill Creamery's two shops in Hamilton Heights and Central Harlem.

Because Figueroa recently moved to Seattle for work, however, he is instead being named Honorary Mayor of Harlem, the shop announced. He will pass the title on to Louis Johnson, proprietor of the boutique Harlem Haberdashery on Lenox Avenue.

The family-run Sugar Hill Creamery launched the contest in February after hatching the idea to bring back the symbolic position, which has been given to so many Harlemites over the years that it has its own Wikipedia page.

"It's an unofficial title that I don't think any other neighborhood can boast about," co-owner Petrushka Bazin Larsen told Patch in February.

Harlemites could vote in the contest between Feb. 14 and March 14 by making any purchase at Sugar Hill's shops. Both winners received hand-drawn portraits by the artist Audrey Moffitt that hang on the shop's walls.

Johnson, in addition to his role at the haberdashery, is the co-founder of the nonprofit The League: A Distinguished Gentlemen Movement, Inc., which intends to "empower young men from all backgrounds and cultures, catapulting them to perform and live to their highest potential," the shop said.

Figueroa also serves as a deacon at First Corinthian Baptist Church and a youth mentor to young Black and brown boys in Harlem.

The four other finalists were: Yvonne Jewell, co-founder of Harlem Fashion Week; Damany Mathis, a musician and educator; Tammeca Rochester, founder and owner of Harlem Cycle; and Lashon Ruth Kempson, a community health advocate and entrepreneur.

Previous coverage: Who's The 'Mayor Of Harlem'? A Neighborhood Shop Wants To Know

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