"I think if you look at people, whether in business or government, who haven’t had any moral compass, who’ve just changed to say whatever they thought the popular thing was, in the end they’re losers." – Michael Bloomberg.
As a politician, Michael Bloomberg breaks the mold. He does not appear to attract the traditional mudslinging barrage and when he does find himself to be the target he appears to be able to just brush off the dirt and continue. Befitting the great city that often seems to defy generalization and champions the unusual, New York’s mayor treads a fine line of political astuteness along an enviable path of success through economic, social and cultural minefields.
Michael Rubens Bloomberg was born in the dead of winter 1942 to middle-class parents in Massachusetts. A solid work ethic and an inquiring mind were evident from an early age and he progressed through Johns Hopkins University to Harvard where he received his MBA. He was intrigued by the process and distribution of information and zeroed in on technology's role in distribution during his time with the investment banker, Salomon Brothers.
Now an enthusiastic New Yorker, Bloomberg applied his theory to practice by founding Bloomburg LP in 1981. This financial news and information service is today a household name and is a trusted source of information for over a quarter million subscribers worldwide.
With his thriving company on course, Bloomberg devoted a lot of his spare time to philanthropic causes. He used his not inconsiderable presence and Rolodex lists to help charities and institutions make an impact in the name of a variety of causes. He was becoming increasingly better known in New York political circles and civic affairs.
The terrorist attacks of 2001 shook the city to its very core and while many people initially turned to "America’s Mayor," the then leader Rudolph Giuliani, Bloomberg was waiting in the wings for his chance to bring his style and vision to bear. When Giuliani came to the end of his term, Bloomberg mounted a considerable campaign based on a reconstruction of the spirit of the city.
Perhaps surprisingly, Bloomberg was a lifelong registered Democrat before he decided to run for mayor, yet switched his allegiance to the Republican Party and was successful, a feat he repeated in 2005. In 2007 he decided that he would leave the Republican Party and became an independent. He had successfully switched allegiance twice, a move that has rarely been successful for politicians at any level before.
Bloomberg’s self-effacing attitude and willingness to "get in the trenches" has endeared him to many New Yorkers to this day. He’s been very successful in combating crime and particularly illegal gun possession and use. He continues to incorporate philanthropy and has been able to reach across party aisles successfully throughout his terms in office. Indeed, he has so much presence that he was able to successfully campaign to amend New York City’s long-running term limits law, allowing him to run for an unprecedented third term in 2009.
In addition to being the mayor of New York City, he is estimated to be the richest resident and the eighth richest person in the world, with a fortune of $16 billion. He is still a majority owner of Bloomberg LP.
While he did not run for election during the recent presidential campaign despite persistent rumors to that effect, Michael is in the running for the mayoral nominations of both Republican and Independent parties in his beloved New York. He has considerable political power within one of the most diverse, demanding and critical political environments and retains a list of admirers across the spectrum and from billionaire to pauper.
His business ethics are unquestionable and his political success may be attributable to the fact that he is able to get within the psyche of what makes New York the place it is – "and because no matter who you are, if you believe in yourself and your dream, New York will always be the place for you. This is the city of dreamers and time and again it’s the place where the greatest dream of all, the American dream, has been tested and has triumphed.”