I’m a teacher and former diplomat who served with distinction in Iraq, and my family has had a farm in the Hudson Valley since I was a boy.
We the people of New York’s 19th District are in the fight of our lives. We’ve formed a grassroots uprising that has shaken the powers that be. After organizing and rallying in our movement, I’m leading a people’s campaign to win us back our voice in Congress. This is not my first fight or my first turn to government service. I’ve been fighting for our country and what I believe in all my life.
I served in America’s most embattled outposts in the Middle East under both Democratic and Republican administrations. After beginning my career as a CIA intelligence officer, I joined the State Department and pushed for peace in the West Bank and Gaza Strip alongside my close friend Ambassador Chris Stevens, whom we lost in Benghazi. I answered the call to help our country in Iraq in 2004 and became one of the longest serving U.S. diplomats of the Iraq War. Fluent in Arabic, I faced down insurgents to set up the first diplomatic talks between our ambassador, our generals and the insurgency. I helped bring warring factions together to create a constitution for Iraq and was decorated by both the U.S. Army and the State Department.
After my service overseas, I returned to my family’s farm here in the Hudson Valley to raise my family, raise livestock and answer a call to teach. Today I live in Woodstock where my wife Suhayr and I both teach and our two sons attend school.
From here in our home in the Hudson Valley – and in homes with supporters around the district – we are putting together a people’s campaign to unite our community and take our fight to the Capitol. We’re doing it because we refuse to stand by while the America we were raised to believe in is weakened by incompetence and dishonesty at the top. The very wealthiest in our country are manipulating our system to steal from the rest of us and hollow out the American Dream. We won’t give up on that dream. It’s the dream of equal opportunity for ourselves, a good education for our children, a living wage for our workers, a clean environment, and health care for our sick and our elderly.
I used to believe democracy was something we fight for overseas. Today, I believe we have to fight for our democracy here at home. We’re uniting for that fight now. I hope you’ll join us.
Campaign Kickoff: June 16, 2017
Thank you one and all for joining us at our kick-off! The event was a powerful demonstration of our unity across the entire district. Activists and leaders from as far as Otsego, Schoharie, Greene, Delaware, Dutchess, Columbia and Ulster showed our strength and resolve.
THE #UNITENY19 FORUMS
Uniting for Change in New York’s 19th Congressional District
Our Health Care
AUGUST 2, 2017 FORUM:
We believe that we have the leaders and expertise here in the 19th Congressional district to address the challenges we face. Our representative isn’t doing his job, so we’re uniting to tell our stories, bring together our best minds and build a movement for change. We held our first forum on health care with guests from all over the district. Many more are to come on a host of topics. We’ll be holding them in locations throughout our district. Please reach out to us if you have a story to tell, policy expertise to deliver or want to help us in running a forum on the challenges we face.
Our Opioid Epidemic
Our Environment & Climate Change
Our Security & Terrorism
Our Jobs & Businesses
Our Voting Rights & Democracy
Our Children and Education
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