I’m a family guy. Not “the Family Guy” but a family guy. Deb and I were married in Skaneateles 30 years ago; she’s a graduate of Fayetteville-Manlius. We have three wonderful kids; one is an ER nurse, her sister is in technology, and our son is a senior at SU finishing his last lacrosse season.
I’m a Syracuse guy. I bleed orange, and have since the day in 1976 when I walked into the Syracuse University Crew Room to try out for freshman crew. I met Coach Bill Sanford. He was hard to miss – as he’s a foot taller than I am. Coach thought I was a cox’n – the little person who steers the boat, but I was there to pull an oar. I was the smallest guy at that first meeting, and most other coaches would’ve cut me right then and right there. Coach Sanford gave me an opportunity, and for that I am forever grateful. Through a ton of really, really hard work, a lot of focus, and with terrific teammates, I was part of an SU team that won many races over four years, including the national championship.
Coach Sanford gave us the opportunity, the coaching, the equipment, but it was up to my teammates and me to deliver. I’ve never forgotten that lesson – we were responsible for our own individual performance, and that drove the success of the team. And we were very accountable – every day, every practice, and in every race, you either performed or you didn’t. No excuses, no whining, no finger-pointing.
That’s how I’ve approached my career in business. I’ve worked in healthcare for 30 years, most of that as an independent consultant. I’ve helped build companies, design new products, enter new markets, devise new business processes, create new jobs. I’ve worked to help turn around struggling businesses that lost their way, had poor leadership, no discipline or focus. And I’ve done well; thanks to hard work, Deb and I were able to move back here several years ago, buy property and build our home in Skaneateles.
Why Onondaga County? I could work anywhere, we could live anywhere. But here’s why: Deb’s an upstater, we love the beauty, the history, the people here; there’s so much to do and so many wonderful people doing interesting work. We have excellent schools, good roads, clean water, fresh air, lots of outdoors activities, andthe fun winters we all enjoy.
We live here because we love it here.
- I see the history here- a community that created an entire industry and supplied the entire country with a critical resource – salt.
- A community where innovation and creativity built a hugely successful foundry – Crucible.
- A community where workers and entrepreneurs worked together to grow successful businesses employing thousands in well-paying jobs in autos, electronics, chemicals, heavy industry here – in Onondaga County – because we had committed workers, robust infrastructure, and can-do government.
- We have one of the world’s leading research universities, and in our community we have businesses like Tessy Plastics and Welch-Allyn two innovative, successful businesses that prove you can prosper here.
But Tessy and Welch Allyn are the exceptions, not the rule.
Onondaga County can – must – get back to what it was – a high-energy, powerful, creative and can-do community.
And that’s why I am running for office in Onondaga County – I want to participate and help foster that progress. Expect more.