ELIOT SPITZER was inaugurated as New York’s 54th Governor on January 1, 2007.
Spitzer was born to Austrian Jewish parents, and raised in the affluent Riverdale section of the Bronx in New York City. His family was not particularly religious and Spitzer did not have a bar mitzvah. With a score of 1590 on the SAT exam, Spitzer attended Princeton University, where he was elected chairman of the undergraduate student government, graduating in 1981. He scored a perfect score on the LSAT, and went on to Harvard Law School, where he met and married Silda Wall. Spitzer was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. One of Spitzer's classmates at Harvard Law School was Jim Cramer, host of CNBC's Mad Money, on which Spitzer has appeared or called in on three occasions.
Upon receiving his Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree, Spitzer clerked for Judge Robert W. Sweet in Manhattan, then joined the law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. He stayed there for less than two years before leaving to join the Manhattan district attorney's office.
Spitzer joined the staff of Manhattan District Attorney Robert M. Morgenthau, where he became chief of the labor-racketeering unit, spending six years pursuing organized crime. His biggest case came in 1992, when Spitzer led the investigation that ended the Gambino organized crime family's control of Manhattan's trucking and garment industries.
Spitzer devised a plan to set up his own sweatshop in the city's garment district, turning out shirts, pants and sweaters, and hiring 30 laborers. The shop manager eventually got close to the Gambinos, and officials were able to plant a bug in their office. The Gambinos, rather than being charged with extortion, which was hard to prove, were charged with antitrust violations. Thomas and Joseph Gambino and two other defendants took the deal and avoided jail by pleading guilty, paying $12 million in fines and agreeing to stay out of the business.
Spitzer left the DA's office in 1992 to work at the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, where he stayed until 1994. From 1994 to 1998 he worked at the law firm Constantine and Partners on a number of consumer rights and antitrust cases.
In 1994, Spitzer put aside his private practice to concentrate on attaining the elected office of New York State Attorney General. He lost in the 1994 election but was successfully elected in the next election in 1998. He has since become one of New York's most recognizable Democratic politicians. On November 7th, 2006 he was elected Governor of New York.
Source: New York Governor's Site; Wikipedia