Hugh Carey

Hugh Carey

Infobox Governor
name= Hugh L. Carey

office= Governor of New York
term_start= January 1, 1975
term_end= December 31, 1982
lieutenant= Maryanne Krupsak
Mario Cuomo (1979–82)
predecessor= Malcolm Wilson
successor= Mario Cuomo
birth_date= birth date and age |1919|4|11
birth_place= Brooklyn, New York
spouse= Helen Owen (d. 1974)Evangeline Gouletas
profession= Lawyer
party= Democratic
religion= Roman Catholicism

Hugh Leo Carey (born April 11, 1919) was the Governor of New York between 1975 and 1982.

Early life

Carey was born in Brooklyn, New York. Carey joined the U.S. Army as an enlisted man during World War II, served in Europe, and reached the rank of major. He received his bachelor's degree in 1942 and law degree in 1951 from St. John's University and was admitted to the bar that same year.

Carey was married in 1947 to Helen Owen. They became the parents of Alexandria, Christopher, Susan, Peter, Hugh, Jr., Michael, Donald, Marianne, Nancy, Helen, Bryan, Paul, Kevin, and Thomas. Helen Owen Carey succumbed to breast cancer in 1974. Peter and Hugh, Jr. died in an automobile accident in 1969. Paul, who served as White House Special Assistant to President Bill Clinton as well as 77th Commissioner of the Securities and Exchange Commission, died of cancer in 2001.

Carey was a partner in the law firm of Finley, Kumble, Wagner, Underberg, Manley, Myerson & Casey. Later in his life, he was of counsel at the law firm of Shea & Gould.

Early political career

Running as a Democrat, Carey was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1960. He served seven terms. He served on the House Ways and Means Committee and led the effort to pass the first Federal Aid to Education program. He was elected Governor of New York in 1974 and resigned his Congressional seat on December 31, 1974. Carey was reelected in 1978, serving two full terms as Governor. On January 1, 1983 he was succeeded by his lieutenant governor, Mario Cuomo. Carey returned to private law practice with the firm of Harris Beach in New York City, where he still resides. He was the first congressman from Brooklyn to oppose the Vietnam War.


Carey was elected Governor with 58% in 1974, becoming the state's first Democratic Governor in 16 years. Carey is best remembered for his successful handling of New York City's economic crisis in the late 1970s. As Governor he was responsible for building the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center; Battery Park City; the South Street Seaport and the economic development of the outer boroughs of NYC. He also helped provide state funding for the construction of the Carrier Dome at Syracuse University. He is also remembered for preventing conservative legislators from reinstating the death penalty and preventing such legislators from taking away state abortion laws.

Upon taking office, Carey cut taxes significantly, reduced corporate taxes from 14 percent to 10 percent, capped personal income tax at nine percent, and reduced capital gains taxes. His administration also offered tax credits to encourage new investment. []

Carey came into office with New York City close to bankruptcy. He brought business and labor together to help save New York City from the fiscal crisis that befell it in the 1970s.

Carey signed the Willowbrook Consent Decree, which ended the warehousing of the mentally retarded and developmentally disabled. His vision and leadership led to the community placement of the mentally retarded and developmentally disabled. He also made major strides in community programs for the mentally ill.

Carey's tenure in office was marked by a growing awareness of the environmental consequences of New York's strong industrial base, including the designation by the federal government of the Love Canal disaster area. Carey made environmental issues a priority of his administration.

Along with Senators Edward Kennedy and Daniel Patrick Moynihan and U.S. House Speaker Tip O'Neill, Carey led efforts to end the violence in Northern Ireland and support peace in the region.

Carey considered running for President in 1976 and 1980. Carey's first wife, Helen Owen, had died in 1974, and Carey later attributed his decision not to seek the Democratic nomination for President in 1976 to her death.

In 1978, he was challenged for reelection by then state Assembly Minority Leader Perry Duryea. After a competitive, sometimes negative campaign, Carey was the first Democrat reelected in 38 years.

In April 2006 Carey endorsed then-Attorney General Eliot Spitzer as a candidate for Governor; Spitzer went on to win the election by a large margin, and was sworn in as the 54th Governor of the State of New York on January 1, 2007.

Governor Carey endorsed Senator Barack Obama of Illinois for the Democratic nomination for President in 2008.

Carey currently sits on the board of Triarc Cos. [ [ Triarc ] ] , the Nelson Peltz controlled holding company.


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