David Alexander Paterson was the 55th Governor of New York, in office from 2008 to 2010. He was the first African American governor of New York and also the second legally blind governor of any U.S. state.
David Paterson was born in Brooklyn to Portia Paterson, a homemaker, and labor law attorney Basil Paterson. Basil Paterson was later a New York state senator and secretary of state, and served as deputy mayor of New York City. According to a New York Now interview, Paterson traces his roots on his mother’s side of the family to pre-Civil War African American slaves in the states of North Carolina and South Carolina. His father is of Jamaican descent . His paternal grandmother, Evangeline Rondon Paterson was secretary to Black Nationalist leader Marcus Garvey.
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