My father was raised in an orphanage. He suffered as a baby from Polio and spent much of his childhood homeless on the streets. My mother grew up in a poor farm community that experienced famine and hunger. My father went on to become an extraordinary Ph.D. scientist who dedicated his life to trying to cure Cancer and Alzheimer’s. My mother became a nurse and helped thousands of people in South Jersey.
My parents chose to raise me and my sister in South Jersey because they believed the top notch public school system would give us opportunities to succeed. I did my entire Kindergarten through 12 in the public schools here, and that education helped me become a Rhodes Scholar and a leading national security expert.
New Jersey gave my family the opportunity to achieve the American dream, but now I worry those same opportunities won’t be there for my two baby boys who I’m raising here just a few miles from where I grew up. I worry that the community that gave me everything isn’t getting the support it deserves. I’m fighting for my family, for my neighbors, for the community that raised me, and for the state that gave me the American dream.
There is nothing I’d rather do than serve my country. I believe that service isn’t just a job, it is a way of life. I dedicated my entire career to serving the American people. I worked at the White House on countering terrorism and protecting our country, advised the Secretary of Defense and the Pentagon on national security, and I served in Afghanistan as a strategic adviser to Generals David Petraeus and John Allen. When I served in Afghanistan, no one asked me if I was a Democrat or a Republican. We all worked together focused on the mission of keeping our nation safe. I worked under both Democratic and Republican Administrations and I have and always will put the nation and the American people above partisan politics.