The New York Republican Party is proud to have so many rising stars for offices throughout the state. Meet some of the 2022 candidates who are making a mark both here in New York and on the national stage.

Lee Zeldin

Candidate for Governor

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 and his wife, Diana, reside in Shirley with their twin fourteen-year old daughters, Mikayla and Arianna.

Alison Esposito

Candidate for Lieutenant Governor

Following in the footsteps of her father, NYPD Chief Michael Esposito, proudly serving New York City, Alison has served in the New York City Police Department since 1997, rising to the rank of Deputy Inspector. Alison joined the NYPD because she believes that New Yorkers, especially those who need help, are in danger, and cannot protect themselves, have the right to be protected.

After joining the NYPD, she started off on patrol in Manhattan’s Midtown South precinct. From there, she went on to join the Anti-Crime team, a plain clothes unit targeting violent street crime, and after taking down some of the worst criminals, she joined the NYPD’s Emergency Services Unit. Alison then served in the Bronx and on the NYPD’s Gang Unit and on many other assignments, which brought her to the 70th precinct in Brooklyn where she served as Deputy Inspector.

For too long, Alison has witnessed the state and city she loves deteriorate in a spiraling decline. Fatally flawed liberal policies like cashless bail, defund the police, the Less is More Act, DAs like Alvin Bragg who won’t enforce the law and so much more have surrendered our streets to criminals. Alison has fought crime her whole adult life and is more than ready to tackle the rampant crime and violence facing our state. Now more than ever, New York needs capable, determined, and courageous leadership that will protect everyday New Yorkers, drive down their cost of living, and restore our state to glory.

Not too long ago, New York had the reputation as the greatest state in the greatest country in the world. It’s about time we get back to acting like it. She is ready to fix Albany alongside Congressman Lee Zeldin on day one.

Raised in Highland Mills, New York, in Orange County, Alison Esposito attended the State University of New York at Delhi, City University of New York’s John Jay College of Criminal Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) National Academy at Quantico.

Joseph Pinion

Candidate for United States Senate

Joe Pinion is an advocate, entrepreneur, and Political News Commentator. Throughout his life, Joe has witnessed both the power of opportunity and the pernicious impact of government driven neglect.

From the faces within his own family to the stories he has helped explore from behind a News Desk, Joe personally understands the realities confronting the everyday people that call New York home.

Joe, born and raised in Yonkers, NY by his mother and grandmother, graduated from Horace Mann High School. A Standout Student-Athlete, he was recruited to play football at Colgate University, where he was a 2 year Varsity Letter winner and a Member of the 2003 team that finished 15-1 and played in the I-AA National Championship.

As a Political News Commentator, Joe has appeared regularly on prominent news networks and talk shows and was most recently the host of his own show “Saturday Agenda” on Newsmax.

As a business professional, Joe has a wealth of experience in the private sector and non-profit space with nearly two decades of expertise in healthcare, media, and renewable energy.

At every stage of his professional life, Joe has effectively leveraged his talents to try and give a voice to the voiceless and to bring attention to issues that often fall through the cracks.

As director of youth development at the Morris Height Health Center located in the nation’s poorest congressional district in the Bronx, Joe helped integrate health services with community engagement to spearhead a bridge grant program designed to provide gap funding for children within the community to improve college accessibility.

As a national spokesman for RePublicEN and a fellow of the non-partisan group DeployUS, Joe has been a champion for real, non-governmental clean energy solutions.

And in his personal life, Joe has fought for community driven solutions to help end the ravages of poverty and despair that afflicts far too many Americans.

Like too many New Yorkers, Joe experienced first-hand the government failing at one of its most fundamental obligations to protect our most vulnerable when he lost his 100-year-old grandmother who died of COVID, alone in a nursing home.

Today, Joe is running for U.S. Senate because our state and our country are in trouble. For too long, career politicians like Chuck Schumer have failed the 99%, choosing instead to serve the political cronies and own self interests. In Chuck Schumer’s rise to power and fame as leader of the Senate, he left the rest of us behind choosing to serve as loyal leader of the extreme radicals in Washington rather than side with us.

It’s time we send regular people with an extraordinary vision to represent our shared values in Washington and look out for our best interests, not the special interests.

Michael Henry

Candidate for Attorney General

The first member of his family to go to college, Michael Henry is a New York-based attorney whose practice focuses primarily on commercial litigation. Michael is admitted to practice in the State of New York, Eastern District of New York, Southern District of New York, United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and has represented numerous asylum seekers from China before the Executive Office of Immigration Review.

In law school, Michael was a judicial intern for The Honorable John M. Czygier, Jr., Suffolk County Surrogate’s Court. Michael has appeared as both a legal and political analyst on local and national television and talk radio programs.

Michael has authored columns on a variety of topics over the years, including immigration, and public policy, and has worked with both political candidates and political organizations throughout the United States. Prior to practicing law, Michael was employed in the mortgage industry, gaining significant management experience. Additionally, Michael spent time abroad while earning his M.A. in International Relations with an additional Graduate Certification in International Law and Diplomacy.

Michael has been an active member of the Federalist Society since law school, holding roles as a law school chapter president and a regional coordinator. Michael is also a member of multiple Italian American Lawyers associations.

Paul Rodriguez

Candidate for Comptroller

Paul Rodriguez is a global financial expert with several decades of experience funding, financing, and investing money at some of the world’s most widely recognized financial institutions. Paul brings to the race a deep background in the world of finance ranging from major multinational corporations to advising small businesses. As a political outsider from the private sector, Paul is running to professionalize the Office of the Comptroller and serve as a much-needed watchdog for New York taxpayers and the state’s $212 billion budget.

Paul served on Wall Street for more than 25 years at various leading firms, including Salomon Brothers, Merrill Lynch, UBS, BBVA, and ANZ. He began his career as an equity research analyst, later transitioning to credit analysis and eventually becoming a global banker working with multinational corporations in the United States and internationally.

Paul was born in Queens to working-class Puerto Rican parents. His father served as a Vietnam-era Marine combat veteran and his mother as an executive assistant. His parents separated when Paul was an infant, and his mother relocated them to Puerto Rico, where he lived for 10 years before moving back to the States. Paul learned Spanish as his first language and has worked and traveled throughout Latin America and Europe during his career.

Like many New Yorkers, Paul experienced the struggles facing single-parent households and learned early on the value of hard work and contributing to the family. During his studies at Northwestern University, he served as a Midshipman in the Naval ROTC program. The grit and determination he developed as a young boy has served him throughout his life, later helping him beat cancer.

Paul has always had a passion for service. He is a past Executive Board member of the Manhattan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Brooklyn-Kings County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. He is also a past president of the New York Young Republican Club. He ran for Congress against Rep. Nydia Velazquez in 2004 in one of the most culturally and ethnically diverse districts in New York City, encompassing Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan. In 2021, Paul was the Conservative Party nominee for New York City Comptroller. He most recently served in the Archdiocese of New York, managing their extensive multi-million dollar fundraising campaigns.

In addition to his studies at Northwestern, Paul earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and a Certificate in Global Policy Studies at the University of Georgia. He also completed a Fellowship in Economics at Stanford University. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife of 17 years (Rocio) and two of his three daughters, aged 10 (Natalia) and 14 (Ana Sofia). His oldest daughter, aged 26 (Gabriela), lives in Puerto Rico.


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