Referred to by most as “Betty,” Hulsen has lived in the Brooklyn neighborhood for nearly all her life. Now at 77 years old, she’s serving her community as the president of the 94th Precinct Community Council.
“I’ve lived here all my life, then I got married, moved out for one year, I didn’t like it and I moved right back,” she said. “I moved to Jackson Heights, and I was there for a year and I moved right back.
“I’ve been living in the apartment I’m in now for like 54 years,” she added.
In her role as president of the council, Hulsen connects her local neighbors with local law enforcement. During National Night Out Against Crime, an annual event introducing cops to community members, Hulsen received wide praise for her work.
As Greenpoint continues to change, especially with the influx of younger residents moving in, Hulsen said the safety of the neighborhood has actually improved.
“It’s more lively now,” Hulsen said. “When you walk down the street at 2 o’clock in the morning, you see a lot of people. It wasn’t like that back in the day.”
Although many longtime residents have not meshed well with the new, younger population, Hulsen said she thinks they’re nice, especially the millennials who live on her block.
“We sit on the stoop in the nice weather and they’ll pass by and say hi,” she said. “They say hi, so you say hi.”
As far as her work bridging community and police relations, she said anybody is welcome to attend their monthly meetings, including the newer arrivals to the neighborhood.
She said they meet on the first Wednesday of every month, except for July and August, at Church of the Ascension at 122 Java Street.
“I think it’s a good thing, I really do,” Hulsen said. “It brings the community closer together.”