“ Ijoined Bloomberg’s team as an intern in 2003, when his popularity was at something like 32 percent. I worked on the logistics of Christo’s Gates. It was really something to be there in the cold with the mayor at the unfurling of the first gate; that was the first time I felt like I was part of something big, something that affected the city in a real way. After the election, I went to Yale Law, represented Guantánamo detainees, and worked at Goldman—but I always knew I’d come back. I’m one of two policy advisers; I handle the MTA, public safety, economic development and small business, and charter schools. I develop and articulate the mayor’s vision, ensure his record is accurately portrayed, and am involved in rapid response to attacks.
I’m not big on tilting at windmills, and I know it’s never going to be a perfect city. You spend days, weeks, months working on one policy piece, and the resolution boils down to a single press conference or something. It’s weird to see how normal people see this process. My parents live in Grasmere, Staten Island, and they’re not civically active. I mean, they vote, but not much more than that. And there was this thing where a dead-end street near them was going to be revived, and my dad was like, “Can you fix this? Can you kill this?” And, no, it’s not like that, Dad. Sorry.