Noam Bramson doesn't expect to have much leisure time between now and November.
Shortly after midnight Thursday, the New Rochelle mayor was selected to be the Democratic candidate for Westchester County executive. He will be facing incumbent County Executive Robert Astorino, a Republican, from Mount Pleasant.
Bramson was selected after two ballots, defeating Westchester County Board of Legislators Chairman Ken Jenkins (D-Yonkers) and county Legislator Bill Ryan (D-White Plains). The votes came from local Democrats representing towns and cities from around the county.
"It will involve a balancing act," Bramson said of continuing to be mayor while running for a new office. "I take my duties as mayor, of course, very seriously and will uphold my responsibilities."
He said his goal was to run a substantive, issue-based campaign.
"It's going to be one that draws a clear contrast to subjects that are relevant to our county's future," Bramson said.
He is a life-long resident of New Rochelle, graduating from New Rochelle High School in 1987. He attended Harvard University where he completed his undergraduate degree in three years. He then received a master's degree in public policy.
He served for 10 years on the New Rochelle City Council, representing District 5, and was appointed mayor in January 2006 to complete the unexpired term of Timothy Idoni, who was elected Westchester County Clerk.
Bramson was elected to a full four-year term in November 2007 and was re-elected in 2011.
He is married to Catherine Stern, a clinical pediatric neuropsychologist. They have two sons—Jeremy, 8, and Owen, 6—who are students in the New Rochelle public schools.
Bramson has served on the Boards of numerous civic organizations, including the New Rochelle Campership Fund, the Castle Gallery, the Fund for Educational Excellence, the New Rochelle Council of Community Services, the Westchester Jewish Council, and the United Way of New Rochelle.
He feels the timing is right for a run at the county executive job.
"I've been the leader of a diverse, complex community that is in its composition a microcosm of the county as a whole," he said. "I believe very deeply in public service, and I believe there is an opportunity to shape a bright future for Westchester County as a whole."