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Bill de Blasio, mayor-elect of New York City, has Cambridge roots

Posted by Roy Greene  November 6, 2013 12:32 PM

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By Globe Staff

Bill de Blasio, who was elected mayor of New York City on Tuesday, spent his formative years in Cambridge and attended Cambridge Rindge and Latin School. And he's an unabashed Red Sox fan.

In a profile last month, the Globe recounted how de Blasio showed flashes of leadership even at a young age.

Here is an excerpt from the story, by Michael Levenson:

In an interview, de Blasio, 52, said growing up in Cambridge gave him a “very progressive grounding” that continues to guide him in New York. “There was an atmosphere of social consciousness,” he said.

But in high school, de Blasio’s obsession with student government could elicit eye-rolling from other students.

One teacher recalled that students hummed “Hail to the Chief” when de Blasio walked into class. He was nicknamed “Senator Provolone,” in a nod to the generous Italian sandwiches he would bring to lunch and to his “overweening investment in political life,” said Gerry Speca, who was de Blasio’s drama teacher. In the high school yearbook, he was labeled “future president of the U.S.A. — the Untied Sneakers Association.”

His overloaded résumé of student government activities landed him a profile in the Globe when he was 17. The paper interviewed him while he was leaning on his desk at the state Department of Education, where he was the coordinator of the Student Services Center.

The story described the teenage de Blasio as a “students’ rights advocate” whose interest in politics began in the sixth grade when he started talking back to the television as he watched President Nixon speak about “his economic and Vietnam policies and all the inequalities happening to people.”

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