Lee Zeldin – In the race for governor of New York in 2022, Kathleen Courtney Hochul, an American lawyer and politician who has been in office since August 24, 2021, will face Lee Zeldin.
She is a Democrat and the first female governor of New York since the 1930s, as well as the first from upstate New York.
Hochul was born Kathleen Courtney in Buffalo, New York, the second of six children of Patricia Ann “Pat” (Rochford) Courtney, a homemaker, and John P. “Jack” Courtney, a college student and office worker at the time.
During her time as a student at Syracuse University, Hochul developed a political activism. She is renowned for organizing a boycott of the university’s bookstore due to exorbitant prices and for trying unsuccessfully to have the school’s stadium named after former running back, National Football League draft pick, and cancer patient Ernie Davis.
The student publication The Daily Orange gave her a “A” in the spring of 1979, citing the campus modifications as proof of her achievement in convincing the institution to withdraw from apartheid South Africa.
In 1980, she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in political science from Syracuse University’s Maxwell School, and in 1984, she earned her Juris Doctor from the Catholic University Columbus School of Law.
Hochul started working for a Washington, D.C. law firm after graduating from law school, but she didn’t enjoy the work.
She consequently worked for the New York State Assembly and the offices of U.S. Representative John LaFalce and U.S. Senator Daniel Moynihan before running for office.
She was appointed by the Hamburg Town Board on January 3, 1994, to fill the vacancy left by Patrick H. Hoak’s resignation to assume the position of town supervisor. In November 1994, she was elected to a full term on the Democratic and Conservative party lines. In 1998, 2002, and 2006, she won reelection.
She did, however, quit on April 10, 2007, and Richard A. Smith, a former state assemblyman, took her place. She spearheaded attempts to get toll booths removed from some of the New York State Thruway system while serving on the board.