County executives across New York elected Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro to serve as president for the New York State County Executive Association (NYSCEA) on Wednesday.

NYSCEA represents 19 counties and 16.7 million New Yorkers.

“These are challenging times for everyone. As county executives, our first responsibility is to serve the public, keep our citizens safe and help our communities thrive. But in this environment, we cannot do this by ourselves. We all need to work together, and we need a strong partnership with the federal, state, and local governments on behalf of all New Yorkers,” said Molinaro in a statement. “I look forward to working with county leaders from across the state and building the necessary partnerships we all need to battle this pandemic and save our economy.”

Molinaro was the Republican gubernatorial candidate in 2018. He was the youngest county executive in Dutchess County history when he took office in 2011. Molinaro is also second vice president of the New York State Association of Counties.

The last NYSCEA president, Albany County Executive Dan McCoy, wrote, “It has been an honor for me to serve as president and I am looking forward to working with Marc and all of New York’s county executives as we lead the local response to the global pandemic.”