I was born and raised in NYC, though most of my adult life I’ve been a Colorado resident.
I was raised in a diverse community that valued and encouraged critical thinking, curiosity, social and political activism, fairness and opportunity for all, and a reverence for history. I was always a very serious kid.
My appetite for math and science was insatiable, and I expressed my creativity largely through music.
I played in the school orchestra, the jazz ensemble, and in a lot of school theater
productions. My mother was a public school teacher in Queens, and my father was a WWII vet - a Normandy medic. We owned a small neighborhood pharmacy in Brooklyn. They were hardworking, serious people who installed in me a hardworking, serious ethos. I’ve carried that and the other core tenants with me my entire life, and if elected will apply them to my work as Commissioner.
After graduating Martin Van Buren High School in Queens, NY, I enrolled at the
State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook. It was at Stony Brook that I first discovered sports - fencing and rugby. Rugby and I had a future destiny, but I’ll come back to that. The university environment didn’t suit me. I didn’t have any patience or appetite for it. I wanted to grow up immediately and I knew I needed a radical change to make it happen. In 1986 I joined the US Army.