Zeldin for New York Launches Lieutenant Governor Search Committee

NEW YORK – Today, Zeldin for New York launched its Lieutenant Governor Search Committee. The diverse, bipartisan committee is comprised of New Yorkers from all walks of life and every corner of our state. The committee will be chaired by Congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis who represents New York’s 11th Congressional District.

Congressman Zeldin said, “We must restore a balance of power in Albany, both geographic and political, and the diversity of this committee underscores that in a Zeldin Administration everyone will have a seat at the table. I have the utmost confidence that the incredibly qualified members of this committee will bring expertise from each of their unique walks of life to put forward the best choice to join me on the ticket in 2022.”

Chair of the Zeldin for New York Lieutenant Governor Search Committee Congresswoman Malliotakis said,“It’s an honor to chair Congressman Zeldin’s Lieutenant Governor Search Committee and help determine the ticket that will restore common sense in Albany. Lee has continued to express that his ticket will be one that represents all New Yorkers and will fight for the everyday people that Albany has turned its back on. I’m confident that this incredibly qualified and diverse committee will find the right person to help Congressman Zeldin Save Our State and restore New York to glory.”

Members of the Zeldin for New York Lieutenant Governor Search Committee and their respective biographies can be found below in alphabetical order:

Will Barclay, Minority Leader of the New York State Assembly

Born in Syracuse, Leader Barclay is a lifelong resident of Central New York and represents the eighth generation of his family living in Pulaski, New York. A graduate of St. Lawrence University and Syracuse University College of Law, Leader Barclay was first elected to the State Assembly in 2002. During his tenure he has held several leadership positions within the Republican Conference, including Deputy Minority Leader, Chairman of the Republican Assembly Campaign Committee and Ranking Member on the Assembly Way & Means Committee. An attorney and businessman, Leader Barclay was unanimously elected as Assembly Minority Leader in January 2020.

Joe Borelli, New York City Councilman, District 51

Beginning a lifetime of service to Staten Island right out of college, Councilman Borelli ran the successful campaign of first time candidate Vincent Ignizio, who was elected to the New York State Assembly. He served as Chief of Staff to then-Assemblyman Ignizio and continued to serve in that office when Ignizio was elected to the New York City Council in 2007. Councilman Borelli ran for office of his own not long after, winning a seat in the State Assembly before going on to succeed Ignizio’s seat on the City Council in 2015 where he serves as the Council’s Minority Whip and Chair of the Council’s Committee on Fire and Emergency Management. He is also an adjunct professor of Political Science.

John Burnett, Executive Vice Chairman of the New York State Republican Party

A natural entrepreneur with an innate business sense, John began his career passing out flyers for a Queens Village Jewelry store in eighth grade, of which he was promoted to manager of after a year. This ambition drove John to begin his 20-year Wall Street career at 19 years old as a margin analyst on Wall Street, where he climbed the corporate ladder at the world’s most prestigious financial institutions. John is a former candidate for New York City Comptroller and currently works as an independent business consultant. His input on political issues has been featured countless times in print and broadcast news.

Richard David, Mayor of Binghamton, President of the New York State Conference of Mayors

Beginning his career in journalism, Mayor David moved to Binghamton where he became a general assignment reporter for CBS and CW affiliate station WBNG-TV. During his time covering local politics, he became interested in public service and was appointed Binghamton City Hall’s Director of Community Relations where he managed public outreach, media relations, and constituent communications. He was later appointed Deputy Mayor by former Mayor Richard Bucci before being elected Mayor of Binghamton himself in 2013. As mayor, he has fought to revitalize the city’s infrastructure, provide more support to law enforcement, and cut taxes.

Sylvia Diaz, Executive Director of the Suffolk County Community College Foundation

Dr. Diaz is a licensed social worker who received her doctorate in Social Welfare and Masters of Social Work from Stony Brook University. As Executive Director of the Suffolk County Community College Foundation, she oversees the foundation’s internal and external operations. She also served as Regional Vice President for the American Cancer Society of Suffolk County and is an adjunct professor in the Master of Science Program in Human Services Leadership at St. Joseph’s College.

Andrea Dumas, Mayor of Malone, Franklin County Legislator

With a passion for local government service, Mayor Dumas started as a Village Trustee of Malone, New York in 2014. Two years later, she was elected as a Franklin County Legislator. In 2019, she was elected Mayor of the Village of Malone and currently serves in both positions. Additionally, she serves as a Community Liaison for New York State Senator Dan Stec.

Mike Finnegan, Former General Counsel to Governor George Pataki

After graduating college in 1978, Mike began his career in the offices of State Assembly Minority Leader James Emery and Westchester County Executive Andrew O’Rourke while attending law school. He managed former Governor Pataki’s successful campaigns for mayor, State Assembly and State Senate. After Pataki’s election as governor, Mike was the governor’s first appointment, serving as general counsel to the governor. In public office, he helped the administration lower income taxes, brokered the New York City Watershed agreement to protect the city’s drinking water supply, and negotiated the governor’s $1.75 billion Clean Water Clean Air Bond Act legislation. Today, he is the managing director of investment banking for JPMorgan Chase.

Dov Hikind, Former New York State Assemblyman, Founder of Americans Against Antisemitism

A lifelong Brooklynite, Assemblyman Hikind served the 48th Assembly District for 35 years beginning in 1982. During his time in office, he was instrumental in expanding security measures in subway stations across Brooklyn neighborhoods and was a stalwart defender of Israel and Jewish American communities. Assemblyman Hikind fought against discrimination of all kinds, chairing the Assembly’s Subcommittee on Human Rights where he published an in-depth study of the effects of the quota system and reverse discrimination on education, business and the civil service. From 2013 to 2019, he served as Assistant Majority Leader in the Assembly.

Gerard Kassar, Chair of the New York State Conservative Party

A lifelong Brooklynite, Chairman Kassar started his political career as a college student on the staff of former Bay Ridge Assemblywoman Florence Sullivan. Throughout his 40-year career, Chairman Kassar held a number of senior staff positions within the New York State Assembly before being appointed to former State Senator Martin Golden’s Chief of Staff. Within the New York State Conservative Party, he has served as a district leader, state committee member and Brooklyn County Executive Director. In 2019, he was unanimously elected to serve as the State Party Chair.

Brittany Kolbe. Montgomery County Clerk

Brittany started her political career as an intern for George Amedore for State Senate in 2014 and turned her passion for politics and public service into a career as Senator George Amedore’s Constituent Services Coordinator in 2015. Three years later, she ran for her current position of Montgomery County Clerk, successfully defeating a 28-year incumbent. She is the founder and two time past President of the Montgomery County Women’s Republican Club, former Capital Region Vice-Chair, current Mohawk Valley Region Vice-Chair of the NYS Young Republicans and current Vice-Chair of the Montgomery County Republican Committee. As her work continues, she strives to inspire young Republican women everywhere to run for office.

Nick Langworthy, Chair of the New York State Republican Party

Dating back to his college years, Chairman Langworthy’s reputation as a GOP leader began at Niagara University where he established the university’s branch of the College Republicans before becoming state president of the organization. His career in politics officially began with an internship at former Governor Pataki’s office and running a congressional campaign at just 21 years old. Chairman Langworthy then served in the offices of former Congressmen Thomas Reynolds and Chris Lee until 2010, when he was unanimously elected Chair of the Erie County Republican Party. He served as Erie County Republican Party Chair until elected Chair of the New York Republican Party in 2019.

Eric Levine, Head of the Litigation and Bankruptcy Department of Eiseman Levine

Mr. Levine is an accomplished litigator. He graduated from Union College in 1980 and Hofstra Law School in 1986 and received a Master Degree in Middle Eastern Politics from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies in 1981. After four years in private practice, Mr. Levine joined the U.S. Department of Treasury, Office of Thrift Supervision, where he prosecuted Savings and Loan fraud from 1990-1992. While at OTS, Mr. Levine worked closely with various U.S. Attorneys’ offices around the country, as well as other regulatory agencies including the Office of the Comptroller of the currency and the Securities and Exchange Commission in connection with bank fraud prosecutions. A large portion of his practice relates to white collar civil defense work on behalf of individuals and corporations against the SEC, FINRA and other governmental agencies. Eric also has significant experience defending against civil RICO claims as well as general corporate litigations involving financial institutions, partnerships and LLCs. He has counseled and advised boards of directors and individual board members of both publicly traded companies and not-for-profit foundations and trusts. Currently, Mr. Levine is currently the head of the Litigation and Bankruptcy Department of Eiseman Levine and currently resides in Westchester County.

Nicole Malliotakis, Congresswoman, New York’s 11th Congressional District

Born and raised in New York City, Congresswoman Malliotakis started her career in politics working as a community liaison for former State Senator John Marchi and former Governor George Pataki before being elected to the New York State Assembly in 2010. While in the Assembly, she fought successfully for elder rights and prevented the closure of a Staten Island senior center and brought significant relief for New Yorkers in the fight against toll increases. In 2017, she ran for mayor of New York City, garnering 316,947 votes, before going on to defeat a Democrat incumbent Congressman in 2020.

Reverend Jason McGuire, Executive Director of New Yorker’s Family Research Foundation and New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms.

Rev. Jason J. McGuire works to educate social conservatives and other concerned New Yorkers on matters of public policy, enabling grassroots conservatives to engage the legislative and political process. Previously, Rev. McGuire served as a pastor in the Finger Lakes region. He attended Davis College and holds a Bachelor of Theology Degree from Andersonville Theological Seminary. A gifted and accomplished public speaker, McGuire preaches and teaches at churches and conferences across the state and the nation; also, he is frequently called upon by state and national media outlets for his expertise regarding New York state government and public policy. McGuire’s broadcasts can be heard on faith-based stations throughout New York, and his emails inform tens of thousands of grassroots activists in the Empire State. He currently serves as the Executive Director of New Yorker’s Family Research Foundation and its affiliated organization, New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms (organizations listed for identification purposes only). He is the Chairman of the Livingston County Conservative Party, the party’s Regional Vice Chairman of the Western Region of New York and sits on the state party’s Executive Committee.

Steve Neuhaus, Orange County Executive, County Executives of America Board Member

A life-long Orange County resident and the son of immigrants, County Executive Neuhaus and his two sisters were raised on a working farm in Southern Orange County that is still operational today. A Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Navy Reserve, he currently is assigned to a Naval Special Warfare team. After serving as Town of Chester’s Supervisor for six years, Neuhaus became Orange County Executive in 2014 and he currently serves on the County Executives of America (CEA) Board of Directors.

Rob Ortt, Minority Leader of the New York State Senate

Leader Ortt began his lifetime of service in October 2001, when he enlisted in the New York Army National Guard in response to the attacks on September 11th. In 2008, he served in Afghanistan where he was awarded a Bronze Star, Army Commendation Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, and achieved the rank of First Lieutenant. Upon returning home, he became Mayor of North Tonawanda, where he served until 2014 when he was elected to the New York State Senate. In 2020, he was named Senate Minority Leader.

Jeff Sperber, Owner of Huck Finn’s Warehouse

President and CEO of Huck Finn’s Warehouse and More, Jeff Sperber is a Capital Region business owner and job creator who is committed to giving back to his community.

Chloe Sun

Chloe Sun resides in New York City where she has become a leader in the Asian-American community and influential member of the Republican Party.

Holly Tanner, Columbia County Clerk

Tanner was first elected as Columbia County Clerk in 2002. During her time in office she has strived to improve the Clerk’s office and Columbia County by computerizing records, implementing an Inactive Records Center, launching the FAVOR Program for veterans discounts at local businesses, and the KISS Program – a free document destruction program for seniors. She currently serves as the Membership Chairman of the Hudson Lions Club, is past Chairperson of the Advisory Committee for the Retired Senior Volunteer Program, past Chairperson of the United Way of Columbia and Greene Counties and past Chairperson of the Columbia County Honor a Veteran Committee.

Trisha Turner, Victor Central School Board Member

Turner began her career of service not in politics, but as a Special Education teacher in the city of New Haven. She has also served as Community Liaison for Assembly Leader Brian Kolb and Regional Director of the Finger Lakes Region for the NYS Assembly. In addition to currently serving as President of the National Federation of Republican Women and Chairwoman of the Ontario County GOP Committee, she serves on the Victor Central School District Board, fighting for a quality education for students of all ages in her community.

Dennis Vacco, Former New York Attorney General

A lifelong public servant, Vacco became an Assistant District Attorney of Erie County in 1978, where he served until becoming United States Attorney for the Western District of New York. In 1994, he was elected to serve as Attorney General of the state of New York, along with Governor George Pataki. While serving as Attorney General, he gained national attention through a series of successful prosecutions brought against internet service providers distributing child pornography, brought up anti-trust charges against telecommunications companies, and argued the landmark assisted suicide case Vacco v. Quill before the United States Supreme Court, winning the case by a 9-0 vote. Today, he practices law in Buffalo, New York.


About Lee Zeldin
Lee Zeldin was born and raised on Long Island. He grew up in Suffolk County and graduated from William Floyd High School in Mastic Beach, where his identical twin daughters attend school today. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York at Albany and then his law degree from Albany Law School, becoming New York’s youngest attorney at the time at the age of 23.
Lee spent four years on Active Duty with the U.S. Army after completing ROTC and served in different capacities, including as a Military Intelligence Officer, Prosecutor, and Military Magistrate. In the summer of 2006, while assigned to the Army’s elite 82nd Airborne Division, Lee deployed to Iraq with an infantry battalion of fellow paratroopers in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
In 2007, Lee returned to Suffolk County with his family. It was at this time that Lee transitioned from Active Duty to the Army Reserve, where he currently serves with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.
In 2008, Lee established a successful law practice in Smithtown, NY. Elected to the New York State Senate two years later, in 2010, Lee’s been working hard every day since to keep the promises he made to the hard-working families he represents.
In the State Senate, Lee successfully fought to repeal the MTA Payroll Tax for 80 percent of employers, a job killing tax that was hurting small businesses. Lee led the successful efforts to repeal the Saltwater Fishing License Fee and create the PFC Joseph Dwyer Program, a statewide program in New York to help our returning veterans cope with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). Lee also wrote the law that protects our fallen veterans and their families from protests at military burials. 
Lee was then elected to the United States Congress in 2014, representing New York’s First Congressional District, and quickly became a leading voice in America on top local, domestic and foreign policy issues.
Lee has secured many key victories for Long Island, which have included among many other successes:
Saving Plum Island, by securing the repeal of a 2008 federal law requiring the island to be sold off to the highest bidder. He also secured funding to repair the historic Plum Island Lighthouse and funding necessary to remediate environmental concerns on the island. 
  • Delivering a $2 billion Electron Ion Collider project to Brookhaven National Lab.
  • Securing $8.3 billion in much needed funding to support treatment, enforcement, and prevention for those affected by the heroin and opioid abuse crisis.
  • Working with the Army Corps of Engineers to protect our coastlines, advancing the ambitious $1.5 billion Fire Island to Montauk Point project, in addition to several other vital projects on the north and south shores of Long Island.
  • Co-Chairing the Long Island Sound Caucus and delivering vast quantities of funding for the Long Island Sound Program, National Estuary Program and SeaGrant.
  • Introducing and passing into law his Adult Day Health Care legislation for disabled veterans and opening a new health care clinic for East End veterans.
  • Co-authoring a bipartisan resolution (H.Res. 246) that passed the House opposing the anti-Israel and anti-Semitic Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement.
  • Successfully resolving over 17,000 constituent cases in favor of NY-1 residents.
One of only two Jewish Republicans in Congress, Lee co-chairs the House Republican Israel Caucus, and serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Financial Services Committee. He also serves on four House Subcommittees.
Lee and his wife, Diana, reside in Shirley with their twin fifteen-year old daughters, Mikayla and Arianna.