I was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1952. If you'd like “proof of citizenship” … just ask.
I am blessed to be married to my wonderful wife, Kimberly, whose intelligence, humor and beauty remind me every day of how fortunate I am. While we both were raised in the Midwest, we now reside in Southern California with our three little pups, who make us smile every day.
My mother and father were first generation Americans. My maternal grandparents came to this country from Italy, and my paternal grandparents came from Ireland. My mother was Protestant, and my father was Catholic; and my mother was a Democrat, and my father was a Republican. If that isn't diversity, I don't know what is.
My father enlisted in the Navy and fought in the South Pacific during World War II. When he returned, he worked in the newspaper industry and served as Secretary-Treasurer of his local union. When my father's line of work was replaced by an emerging technology, he became an entrepreneur and worked as a painting contractor until he retired.
My mother was a Comptroller for the phone company during WWII. After marrying my father, she chose to concentrate on her role as a devoted wife and mother … two areas in which she excelled.
My mother loved the arts and was a gifted singer, and she made sure that my sister, Patti, and I gained an appreciation in that regard. She attended every concert, show or speaking event in which we performed. She was deeply involved in community organizations that supported children's educational and recreational opportunities and was also active in our local Civics Association … which was as close to politics as she ever came.
Because of the times in which they were raised, neither of my parents had the opportunity to attend college. As a result, it became paramount to them that my sister and I pursue our formal educations vigorously. Having experienced the Great Depression, they also instilled within us “the value of the dollar” and taught us to have a profound respect for hard work. In retrospect, I look upon those ideals as lifelong gifts that my parents bestowed upon me.
“God bless America” wasn't just an a phrase that my parents and grandparents often recited. It was an expression of their deeply-rooted belief in our Country and of their love of the United States … a belief and love that I share.
Perhaps as never before, our country requires bold, innovative, and decisive leadership … leadership that is devoid of ego, insulated from undue influence, and predicated upon enforcing the values upon which this great Nation was formed. It is a gap that must be filled … and one that I take it very seriously.
I do not pretend to be particularly remarkable. I am only a citizen running for the Office of President of the United States. If I am different in any way, it is that I am committed to serving this country rather than serving a Party; I am committed to fixing our problems rather than fixing the blame; and I am committed to adhering to the foundational principles of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States. I owe that to you … to my Country … and to the honor of my parents and grandparents, whom if they were alive today would say, “God bless America.”