Why I'm Running
This race impacts all of New York
My name is Alessandra Biaggi, and I’m running for the New York State Senate in District 34, where I was born and raised.
I’m running because the people of the Bronx and Westchester deserve better representation than they currently have. The future of the Democratic party is inclusive, diverse and compassionate – it is not backroom deals and four-men in a room. In New York politics, women are underrepresented – only 22% of New York State Senators are women, despite being over 50% of the population.
This race impacts all New Yorkers, because a truly blue State Senate will mean the passage of important legislation that a majority of New Yorker’s have demanded. Closing the loopholes that empower predatory landlords. The Reproductive Health Act. The DREAM Act. Criminal justice reform. Early voting. The Climate Change and Community Protection Act. The list goes on.
There are five times as many Democrats as Republicans in District 34 and yet for seven years, my opponent led the Independent Democratic Conference ("IDC"), a group of 8 New York state senators who ran and were elected as Democrats, but then went to Albany to caucus and vote only with Republicans, handing control of the State Senate to the GOP. They did this out of self-interest.
As State Senator, my priorities will be expanding voting rights, fully funding public schools, access to affordable childcare, healthcare, and eldercare, fighting domestic violence and gun violence, reforming campaign finance, reproductive justice, and making sure that every person in the district has a good, well-paying job. I'll also fight for functioning transit, affordable housing, criminal justice reform, workers’ rights, immigrants’ rights, environmental sustainability, and protections against sexual abuse, assault, and harassment so that every human being has a safe working environment, regardless of what they do for a living.
It has been such a pleasure getting to know so many of you and learning about the issues that matter to you most. If we haven’t met yet, I look forward to it!
Now more than ever, we need real Democrats in office. Let’s shape our future, together.
Alessandra Biaggi is running for New York State Senate in her home district, NY-34.
The granddaughter of Italian immigrants who lived in Hunts Point, Alessandra Biaggi was born in Mount Vernon, raised in Pelham, and came of age in the Bronx. She was baptized on the Grand Concourse in St. Philip Neri Church, where her parents were married.
Alessandra’s family was a guiding force and deep inspiration for her commitment to public service. Her grandmother Marie, was a community leader in the Bronx, serving as the President of the Bedford Park community center, as security patrol for the neighborhood, and as a leading member of the Mother’s Club at Fordham Prep, and the Association of Italian American Women. After serving in WWI, her grandfather, Anthony, joined the Teamsters Union despite only having a second-grade education.
The lessons Alessandra learned around her grandmother’s Sunday dinner table, were simple – that living in America meant the opportunity for a better life and the ability to achieve the four fundamental elements of freedom – a safe and loving home, a good education, good health, and meaningful work. Around the same table, Alessandra was taught that her voice was her most powerful tool to protect others, and that it is important to speak up for what is right even when it is difficult or unpopular. As fate would have it, this same table now serves as the centerpiece for Alessandra’s campaign team.
Alessandra attended Pelham public schools and was the first woman in her family to graduate from law school. She holds degrees from New York University and Fordham Law School, where she was a member of the Fordham Law Review and served as an editor for the Presidential Succession Clinic at the John D. Feerick Center for Social Justice. She is also a graduate of the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University.
Before launching her campaign in January, she served in Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Counsel’s Office focusing on the Council for Women & Girls and New York State’s women’s policy agenda. There, she advocated for women’s reproductive health and the passage of the Reproductive Health Act and the Comprehensive Contraceptive Coverage Act. She was also a member of the Governor’s Executive clemency team, led bill negotiations across the executive and legislative branches, and worked on health and human service initiatives across multi-state agencies.
During the historic 2016 election, Alessandra was the Deputy National Operations Director for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, overseeing a budget of $500 million, 38 state directors and 45 associated staff.
Following Hillary’s loss to Trump, she focused on igniting women and millennials to get off the sidelines and spring into political action, a process which inspired her to design the rituals of mindful democracy, and to create the Take Action Guide for Activism.
Her run for office is preceded by a decade of advocacy, national leadership, and service to the people of New York, interning for the Kings County D.A.’s Office, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. She was a legal fellow for New York State Homes and Community Renewal, working to ensure that families across New York State had access to affordable housing. She served as Assistant General Counsel for Governor Cuomo’s Office of Storm Recovery working with small businesses and municipalities to rebuild New York after Hurricane Sandy.
Alessandra’s primary focus has always been on breaking down the barriers to entry to increase civic engagement, awareness and participation. She has also hosted community workshops on topics including women in politics, leadership, and community organizing for New York University's Women's Initiative, Columbia University, Ladies Get Paid, Rally + Rise, Impact Hub, Solidarity Sundays, Changemaker Chats, the All In Together Campaign, with Diane Von Furstenberg, and at NYU with the Lieutenant Governor of New York, Kathleen C. Hochul.