Hochul names state senator from NYC as new lieutenant governor
Press Release, Gov. Kathy Hochul’s Office
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the selection of Brian Benjamin for Lieutenant Governor. Senator Benjamin and Governor Hochul have previously worked together on several key issues, including fighting the opioid epidemic and boosting addiction recovery programs, supporting MWBE business owners and making it easier for New Yorkers to vote.
Senator Benjamin previously served as the New York State Senator for District 30, a district that encompasses Harlem, East Harlem, and the Upper West Side. He served as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Revenue and Budget and Senior Assistant Majority Leader, where he distinguished himself as a leader in criminal justice reform and affordable housing. Senator Benjamin remains heavily involved in his community in Harlem.
“I believe that governing is about working together. Teamwork is the essence of effective leadership, and it is more important than ever as we confront the urgent problems facing the state,” Governor Hochul said. “My administration is going to attract the best and the brightest – people who share my values of working hard for the people of this state and who will get the job done – and that includes the newest member Senator Brian Benjamin who has agreed to serve as my Lieutenant Governor. There is so much work to do, and I am grateful to have him by my side as we implement our vision for a safer, healthier and fairer New York.”
Senator Benjamin was born in Harlem to a Caribbean mother who came to this country seeking new opportunities. Though they didn’t have a college education, his parents were fortunate enough to find well-paying union jobs, which allowed them to provide Senator Benjamin and his siblings with a middle class upbringing. After graduating from high school in New York City, Senator Benjamin sought the quality education his parents had dreamed of providing him with, earning his undergraduate degree in Public Policy from Brown University and his MBA from Harvard Business School.
After school, Senator Benjamin returned to Harlem to build affordable housing, creating over a thousand units of environmentally sustainable, affordable housing at an MWBE while helping young people develop work skills and secure good construction jobs through community youth programs
“I want to thank Governor Hochul for trusting me with the incredible honor of serving alongside her as Lieutenant Governor,” said Senator Benjamin. “Governor Hochul is a collaborator who makes sure everyone has a seat at the table, and, like me, is laser focused on listening to the needs of New Yorkers and empowering local leaders. We have a strong history of collaboration that will help us to hit the ground running immediately as we help guide New York through this challenging moment in history.”