was elected New York’s lieutenant governor on November 7, 2006.
Elected to represent Harlem in the New York State Senate in 1985, David Paterson has demanded and achieved change at every level, not simply by what he stands for but by who he is.
In 2002, David Paterson was elected minority leader of the New York
State Senate, the first non-white legislative leader in New York’s
history. In 2004 in Boston, he became the first visually impaired
person to address a Democratic National Convention. And 2006 saw Mr.
Paterson make history again by being elected New York’s first
African-American lieutenant governor.
As New York State Senate minority leader, David Paterson led the charge on several crucial issues for New York’s future, proposing legislation for a $1 billion voter-approved stem cell research initiative, demanding a statewide alternative energy strategy, insisting on strong action to fight against domestic violence, and serving as the primary champion for minority- and women-owned businesses in New York. As a result, Governor Spitzer asked Mr. Paterson to continue to lead New York State on these issues as lieutenant governor.
Lt. Governor Paterson, who is legally blind, is also nationally recognized as a leading advocate for the visually and physically impaired. A graduate of Columbia University and Hofstra Law School, Mr. Paterson also currently serves as an adjunct professor at Columbia’s School for International and Public Affairs. David Paterson lives in Harlem with his wife, Michelle, and their two children, Ashley and Alex, and he is the son of Basil Paterson, the first non-white secretary of state of New York and the first African-American vice-chair of the national Democratic Party.