Brown in 2014
|Chair of the New York State Democratic Committee|
Assumed office |
May 23, 2016
|Preceded by||Sheila Comar|
|62nd Mayor of Buffalo|
Assumed office |
January 1, 2006
|Preceded by||Anthony Masiello|
|Member of the New York Senate|
from the 60th district
January 8, 2003 – December 31, 2005
|Preceded by||Mary Lou Rath|
|Succeeded by||Marc Coppola|
|Member of the New York Senate|
from the 57th district
January 1, 2001 – January 8, 2003
|Preceded by||Al Coppola|
|Succeeded by||Patricia McGee|
|Member of the Buffalo Common Council|
from the Masten district
January 1, 1996 – January 1, 2001
|Preceded by||David Collins|
|Succeeded by||Antoine Thompson|
Byron William Brown|
September 24, 1958
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Education||Buffalo State College (BA)|
Byron William Brown II (born September 24, 1958) is the 62nd and current mayor of Buffalo, New York, elected on November 8, 2005 and is the City's first African-American mayor. He previously served Western New York as a member of the New York State Senate and Buffalo Common Council. He was the first African-American politician elected to the New York State Senate to represent a district outside New York City and the first member of any minority race to represent a majority white New York State Senate district.
Brown was born and raised in Queens, New York. He rose to elective office after serving in a variety of political roles. He began his political career performing as an aide to local representatives in several legislative bodies (Buffalo Common Council, Erie County Legislature and New York State Assembly) and later getting involved in a regional political organization. After several roles as a legislative aide, he was appointed to the Erie County cabinet-level Director of Equal Employment Opportunity post.
As both a New York State Senator and Buffalo Mayor, he has been closely involved in the development of the three Seneca Nation casinos that have been planned and built in Western New York since 2002. As someone born and raised downstate who went on to become an upstate political servant, he has been active on the statewide political front. He is a close political ally of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. He has also been active with the National Mayors Against Illegal Guns Coalition in efforts to prevent gun-related crime. His plan to revitalize Buffalo by demolishing its abundant vacant buildings has drawn opposition from historic preservationists, but he has made the development of the Buffalo waterfront a priority.
Brown was born on September 24, 1958 in Queens, He was raised in Hollis, a southeastern neighborhood in New York City's Queens borough, in a double that his family shared with his grandparents, who were immigrants from the Caribbean island of Montserrat. He grew up on 200th Street between 100th and 104th Avenues and has several relatives still in the area. As a Queens resident, he was a New York Mets and New York Knicks fan.
Brown's father rose from a job as a stock boy to one as an executive in the garment industry. He was a Boy Scout at Hollis Presbyterian Church in Queens and was also active in the Central Queens YMCA (now called Jamaica YMCA). In high school, Brown played the trumpet in the school band. Brown attended Public School 134 in Hollis, junior high school PS 109, and August Martin High School. Brown and his sister Andrea were the first generation in his family to go to college.
After graduating from August Martin High School Brown attended Buffalo State College, in part due to grudging admiration for Randy Smith. He played a year of Junior Varsity basketball as a 5-foot-11-inch (1.80 m) guard. While he had considered a potential medical career, Brown finished, in 1983, with a dual Bachelor of Arts in political science and journalism. He subsequently completed a certificate program for senior executives in state and local government at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.
After college, Brown worked for Bristol-Myers for a year as a regional sales representative, a job that came with a respectable salary and employee benefits such as an expense account and a company car. Brown was disappointed with his advancement potential in this position. As a result, he quit and took the New York State Troopers exam before becoming Chief of staff for Buffalo Common Council President George Arthur for two years. He then spent two years as an aide to Erie County Legislator Roger Blackwell (later Erie County Legislature Chairman). Then, he worked for two years under Arthur Eve, the Deputy Speaker of the New York State Assembly. Subsequently, he served eight years as director of the Erie County division of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission under Erie County Executive Dennis Gorski. He resigned his directorship in July 1993 to run for public office.
Brown was recognized in the November 1989 issue of Ebony magazine as one the "30 Leaders of the Future" with a caption that read "Byron Brown chosen for leadership skills." The Buffalo Chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1991 honored him with the Martin Luther King, Jr. Award for community service. In 1993 he was selected by Business First for its "40 Under Forty Honor Roll". He was awarded the Infinity Broadcasting/WBLK 2001 "Voice of Power Award" and the 2004 "Citizen of the Year" award. He also received the "Political Impact Award" from the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority in 2001.
In 1992, Brown was a delegate to the 1992 Democratic National Convention from the New York's 33rd congressional district. He was originally pledged to Bob Kerrey, but switched to Bill Clinton after Kerrey bowed out of the 1992 Democratic Primary campaign on March 5, 1992. In 1993, Brown was invited to attend Bill Clinton's Inauguration.
Early elective experience
In his first attempt at public office in 1993, Brown ran for the third district of the Erie County Legislature against incumbent William Robinson and George "Butch" Holt, who had Eve's endorsement. Robinson earned the Democratic Party endorsement in June 1993, with the help of Holt who voted for Robinson instead of himself. In June, Brown was notified that he must resign his Erie County cabinet-level post in order to run for public office and he did so in July. Holt won the Democratic nomination with a 267-vote 40–37% margin over Brown in the September 14, 1993 primary election.
Brown won the September 1995 Democratic primary for the Masten District Buffalo Common Council seat. He then took time out from campaigning to attend the October 16, 1995 Million Man March. Brown ousted 18-year veteran councilmember, David Collins, to win his seat on the Buffalo Common Council. He beat Collins by a 5,391–1,670 (76–24%) margin in the November 7, 1995 general election. In his 1997 re-election campaign, he won the September 9 Democratic primary handily, and he was unopposed in the November 4 general election. In his 1999 re-election campaign, he again won the Democratic primary easily on September 14, and he won the November 2 general election. Beginning in January 2000, Brown served as part of the first ever African-American majority in the history of the Buffalo Common Council.
In 1996, The Buffalo News described Brown as "Buffalo's Julian Bond". While on the council, the future state senator and mayor was called "bright, creative and hardworking" in a 1999 Buffalo News survey.
In 2000, he competed for the Democratic nomination for the New York State Senate 57th District against incumbent Al Coppola and Samuel A. Herbert. Coppola was endorsed by Buffalo Mayor Anthony Masiello. Brown won the September 2000 primary by a wide 18% margin. However, Coppola remained on the ballot in the general election on the Conservative Party of New York, Working Families Party and Green Party lines. The Republican Party nominee was the politically inexperienced Harrison R. Woolworth. Although Brown began the race without organized political support, he earned endorsements from many veteran non-Western New York politicians such as H. Carl McCall, Andrew Cuomo, and Hillary Clinton.
When he was sworn into the State Senate on January 1, 2001, Byron Brown became New York's first African-American State Senator elected outside of New York City. He also became the first minority member of the New York State Senate to represent a majority white district.
During Brown's tenure in the New York State Senate his Democratic Party was in the minority. He was part of the majority that backed New York Governor George Pataki's 2001 plan to build up to three Western New York casinos on Seneca Indian land. The legislation was controversial because it granted slot machine rights to casino operators for the first time in New York State. Both of the previous casinos used video gambling machines with debit cards. Brown supported the casinos as a way to support the local economy. When the casino was completed in 2003, he was on the seven-member commission that was to apportion the state's agreed 18% share of the slot machine revenue, amounting to approximately $40 million.
By spring of 2003, Brown was a rising star in the declining years of the "Harlem Clubhouse", a loose political fraternity of David Dinkins, Charles Rangel, Basil Paterson, Percy Sutton and sometimes H. Carl McCall that had dominated state politics while forging the careers of its members for much of the late 20th century. He was envisioned as a front-runner for the 2006 Democratic nomination as Lieutenant Governor of New York or as Buffalo's first black mayor. By 2004 it seemed clear that he was eyeing the mayor's office. In the 2004 New York State Senate elections, Republican nominee Al Coppola opposed Brown for the redistricted 60th District and garnered only 23% of the vote.
In February 2005, Brown announced his candidacy for Mayor of Buffalo. On April 29, 2005 three-term Democratic Mayor Anthony Masiello announced he would not seek a fourth four-year term. Masiello had run on both major party lines for his final two terms and had twice endorsed Republican Governor George Pataki. During his tenure, the city population and industrial tax base had decreased. Six candidates, including Brown, entered the race to replace him, with Brown accumulating many endorsements and the backing of organized labor.
New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer described helping Brown win the Mayoral race as his "biggest campaign priority" in the last month and a half before Primary Day. Buffalo, which had an 8:1 Democrat to Republican ratio and a 38% black population, was 75% contained in Brown's State Senate district. Brown carried 59% of the vote in the September 13, 2005 Democratic primary, and faced Kevin Helfer, a former City Council colleague, in the general election. Brown was the sixth African-American to win the Democratic Mayor Primary since the 1960s, but all before him had failed to win the general election, even though the city had not elected a Republican since 1961. His Republican opponent, Helfer, beat him in the Conservative Party Primary as a write-in candidate, although Brown had been endorsed by that party. Brown raised more than five times as much money as Helfer, however, and defeated him 64% to 27% in the general election.
Brown was sworn in on December 31, 2005 at the Buffalo Convention Center. During his first day in office he toured the Buffalo Waterfront to show his commitment to its development. Before the end of the year, restoration on the original point where the Erie Canal met the Great Lakes was underway. Brown presented his plans for the development during subsequent tours by top state leaders, including future New York State Governors Eliot Spitzer and David Paterson. Erie Canal Harbor eventually opened on July 2, 2008.
In early 2006, the Seneca Nation filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission to build the third of the three Western New York casinos that had been legislated in 2002. In 2007, Brown was not sure he was in favor of the third casino, which seemed to cater to local residents instead of luring tourist revenues. Tom Golisano, founder of Paychex, former owner of the Buffalo Sabres National Hockey League franchise and three-time candidate for New York State Governor, suggested that the Buffalo economy would not benefit from a business designed to transfer money from local citizens to the Seneca Gaming Corporation. Brown withheld support while awaiting clarification of the target consumer for the third casino. In October 2006, the Seneca Nation and Brown came to terms on the final sale of a two-block stretch of city road that runs amid the 9-acre (36,000 m2) construction site. As part of the sale the nation agreed to both marketing terms (regarding marketing beyond the local region), and hiring preferences for city residents. However, in January 2007, a federal judge ruled that the granting of permission to run the third casino by the National Indian Gaming Commission was improper. Seneca Nation received federal approval for their casino on July 2, 2007 and opened the following day.
Crime and poverty
Brown was one of the original 15 mayors from United States cities such as Washington, Dallas, Philadelphia, Seattle and Milwaukee who convened at a meeting hosted by Michael Bloomberg and Thomas Menino at Gracie Mansion to confirm their support for more serious attacks on the use of illegal firearms. Bloomberg and Philip A. Amicone, Yonkers Mayor, were the only Republicans. The mayors all signed a six-point "statement of principles" focused on punishing gun possession "to the maximum extent of the law", prosecuting dealers who knowingly sell guns to criminals through so-called straw purchasers, opposing two United States House of Representatives bills to restrict cities' access to gun-tracing data, endorsing technologies to detect illegal guns, and coordinating strategies and outreach to other cities in hopes of reconvening with at least 50 mayors by year end. A little over a year later the Mayors Against Illegal Guns Coalition co-chaired by Bloomberg and Menino included 225 bi-partisan municipal leaders in pursuit of legal, political and media strategies to stem gun crime and had a stated goal of "making the public safer by getting illegal guns off the streets". Brown noted that he learned several techniques that became useful in Buffalo in reducing the homicide rate 21% from the coalition and talks with specific mayors. Rising homicides had been a disappointment in his first year as mayor.
Brown's first-year review as a mayor was mixed. He was praised for his overhaul of city hall, his follow through on projects and systems, and his influence on statewide redistribution, but he was dogged by crime issues and his efforts for the planned casino. His agenda, hiring and discipline were respected, but rising homicides, continuing decay and evolving bureaucracy were troubling. In addition to public perceptions, Brown had a good working relationship with the Buffalo Common Council.
As mayor of Buffalo, he presided over emergency relief from blizzards such as the mid-October 2006 two-foot snow storm. The storm more than doubled the previous record for single-day October snowfall. Despite the fact that about 200,000 city residents were without electricity, the city saw no spike in criminal activity, according to Brown.
Buffalo is second only to St. Louis among cities nationwide in terms of percentage of vacant properties per capita. Therefore, in fall 2007, Brown committed to a $100 million five-year plan to demolish 5,000 houses, which is about half of the city's total of vacant houses. However, since Buffalo has the second highest residential poverty rate (to Detroit) homes continue to be abandoned. The program may benefit the city because abandoned house costs it an approximate average of $20,060 over five years in lost taxes, debris removal, inspections, and policing. Also, 41% of all fires in Buffalo are in vacant buildings, and more than 90% of all arson cases involved abandoned houses. Subsequently, during the first ever "State of Upstate Address", New York Governor Spitzer suggested committing $100 million in state funds to build or rehabilitate 10,000 homes and apartments. The mayor's initial demolition plans met with resistance from preservationists and he had to negotiate with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, which got him attention from coast to coast.
In 2008, Brown convinced Buffalo to use a real-time wireless video surveillance system. The city installed 56 Avrio Rapid Deployment Surveillance Solution PoleCams. The system was the result of a request by Brown that the city evaluate surveillance cameras in other cities. By January 2009 State of the City Address, Brown reported that crime had fallen 12% and homicide by 50% since he had taken office.
On June 13, 2008, upon the death of NBC News Washington Bureau Chief and Meet the Press moderator Tim Russert, who was a proud Buffalo native, Brown ordered that all flags on city property be lowered to half-staff in order to honor Russert's memory. Brown called Russert one of Buffalo's finest ambassadors, and his decision to lower the flags in honor of Russert, a civilian who never held elected office, was an unusual gesture that was described as breathtaking on Hardball with Chris Matthews by Tom Brokaw. He was joined by several other officials in recognizing Russert. Chief among those was United States President George W. Bush who signed a bill that named a stretch of U.S. Route 20A that passes in front of Ralph Wilson Stadium (home stadium of the Buffalo Bills) Timothy J. Russert Highway.
In a public relations controversy, Brown got caught in a fight against the movement to replace traditional lawns with front yard gardens. His office had issued an edict that a resident remove her landscape renovations. However, an e-mail campaign in defense of the resident caused the mayor to rethink his stance.
On September 15, 2009, Brown won the Democratic Primary for a second term by a nearly two to one margin over City councilmember Michael P. Kearns. Brown had amassed an early lead amongst voters until several scandals involving former basketball star Leonard Stokes, including the questionable government support of his failed "One Sunset" restaurant and a perceived undue influence in mitigating Stokes's arrest for possessing a stolen handicapped parking permit, cut away most of his lead. There were no Republican, third-party or independent candidates, so Brown ran unopposed and won the general election.
Brown and Erie County Democratic Party chairman Leonard Lenihan were at odds over various political positions after Lenihan played a major role in Brown's election to the office of mayor. Brown supported Andrew Cuomo for New York Attorney General in the 2006 general election, David Paterson for Lieutenant Governor of New York in the 2006 general election and Antoine Thompson for 60th District New York Senator in a special election on February 28, 2006. Lenihan disagreed with each of these choices. Thompson had run Brown's last common council campaign, and Brown was upset that he did not get to select his successor in the 60th District. Many supporters considered boycotting the special election due to a perceived racial slight against an African American who seemed to be wrongfully shutout of the process. Lenihan pointed out that neither of the previous state senators turned mayor, Anthony Masiello and James D. Griffin, was granted the right to pick their successor, and he noted that Thompson had not been timely in entering the special election process. The Erie and Niagara County Democratic committees bypassed Thompson as their nominee in favor of Marc Coppola despite Brown's backing in the February special election. Thompson subsequently decided to run for the New York Senate seat in the November general election.
The week before the 2006 New York State Democratic Convention, Brown was described as a political confidant of Democratic New York Attorney General candidate Andrew Cuomo. He seconded Cuomo's nomination at the convention on May 30, 2006. Throughout the campaign Brown was described as a close political advisor to Cuomo. He was noted as (along with Charles Rangel) one of the important black political leaders that Cuomo courted on his road to victory.
During the 2008 United States presidential election, like most of the New York State Democratic establishment, Brown was a supporter of Hillary Clinton, the United States Senator from New York. This marked a break from his earlier political organization, Grassroots, which supported Barack Obama from the outset. He even ran to be a delegate for Clinton at the 2008 Democratic National Convention. In July 2008, Golisano announced that he would attempt to create change in Albany by spending $5 million on targeted campaigns. During the New York state September primary elections for state office, The New York Times alleged that Brown was aiding Golisano's attempt to unseat Sam Hoyt in the New York State Assembly.
As Hillary Clinton resigned her United States Senate seat on January 21, 2009 to assume a position in the United States Cabinet under United States President Barack Obama, New York Governor David Paterson was required to appoint a temporary replacement until a special election in 2010 for the balance of her term. Some thought that the New York State Governor would appoint a minority senator such as Brown, Gregory W. Meeks, H. Carl McCall, William C. Thompson, Jr., José E. Serrano or Nydia M. Velázquez. However, Andrew Cuomo was the front-runner for the seat and the next most likely candidates were Velázquez, Steve Israel, Nita Lowey and Meeks. Prominent women who were mentioned include Carolyn B. Maloney and Caroline Kennedy. The New York Times's Danny Hakim noted that Cuomo, Paterson and Brown were the three names most often mentioned prior to Paterson's ascension to the governor's office. Although these three were the favorites, Brown was considered an unknown outside of Western New York. Nonetheless, Brown's name was mentioned before Kennedy's and Cuomo's in a New York Times article paragraph about Paterson's final nomination decision thoughts. In fact, in at least one article in The New York Times on the subject, Brown was mentioned and Cuomo wasn't. When Paterson announced he had selected Blue Dog Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand, Brown was one of the few contenders to attend the event.
With Cuomo likely to be running for governor in the 2010 New York gubernatorial election, Brown was mentioned in early 2010 as a possible Lieutenant Governor of New York candidate by numerous sources, including multiple journalists from The New York Times. Meanwhile, in early 2010, newly transplanted New Yorker Harold Ford, Jr. considered challenging New York's Junior United States Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand in the 2010 United States Senate special election in New York and met with Brown as part of his statewide political travels.
Byron Brown is married to the former Michelle Austin and they have a son, Byron III, who is referred to as Byron, Jr. by some accounts. Brown III enjoys basketball and has attended high-level youth basketball camps. He played for City Honors School. On the national level, he was an unheralded point guard in the 2008 high school graduating class, and he went on to attend Queen City Prep in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The Brown family attends St. John Baptist Church. While mayor, Brown has performed at least one wedding ceremony at the church. Byron Brown is a chapter president of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, a past President of the Buffalo State College Alumni Association Board, and at the time of his mayoral inauguration he sat on the Board of the Boy Scout Council of Western New York and the Community Action Organization of Erie County. Brown collects tropical fish and maintains an aquarium in his Buffalo Mayor's office. His parents divorced and at the beginning of his mayoral tenure, his mother was living in Buffalo. He also is a member of the Erie County Democratic Committee. He was a delegate to the 1992, 2000 and 2004 Democratic National Conventions.
|Year||Democrat||Votes||Pct||Republican||Votes||Pct||Conservative||Votes||Pct||Right to Life||Votes||Pct|
|2000 NYSS 57th||Byron Brown||48,683||59.77%||Bob Woolworth||12,542||15.40%||Al Coppola||18,938||23.25%||Anthony Murty||1,285||1.58%|
|Democratic||47,011||Republican||11,069||Conservative||13,501||Right to Life||1,285|
|2002 NYSS 60th||Byron Brown||43,260||65.14%||Al Coppola||23,154||34.86%|
|2004 NYSS 60th||Byron Brown||75,031||77.07%||Al Coppola||22,328||22.93%|
|2005 Buffalo Mayor||Byron Brown||46,613||63.79%||Kevin Helfer||19,853||27.17%||Judith S. Einach||3,525||4.82%||Charles J. Flynn||3,082||4.22%|
|2009 Buffalo Mayor||Byron Brown||17,728||99.12%||Michael P. Kearns||158||0.88%|
|2013 Buffalo Mayor||Byron Brown||26,120||70.87%||Sergio R. Rodriguez||10,733||29.12%|
- Watson, Stephen T. (2008-09-27). "Off Main Street: A giving mood ..." The Buffalo News. Archived from the original on 2008-09-30. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Fairbanks, Phil (2005-10-02). "Two who would be mayor - An achiever since boyhood, Brown is disciplined, polished -- and 'sphinxlike'". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Cassese, Sid (2006-03-17). "In the big league Byron Brown is calling the shots as the first African-American mayor of Buffalo". Newsday. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Staba, David (2006-08-28). "To Burnish Its Image, a City Stages an Alumni Reunion". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "Perfect Response to Senseless Ruling". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. 1999-08-01. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2000-09-05). "Contest for Albany Seat Hinges on a Veteran Legislator's Relevance". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2000-10-18). "To Be State Senator, He Must Beat the Incumbent, Again". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Montgomery, David (1992-11-15). "Essentially Eve Arthur O. Eve Has Turned His Life Into A Crusade. The Question Is Whether He Should Lighten Up". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Heaney, James (1993-09-09). "Younger Faction of Black Leadership is Itching To Take Control". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2003-03-20). "To Beat the System, They Infiltrated It; A Political Force Grows in Buffalo". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "People In The News - Ebony Features Brown Among Leaders". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. 1989-11-04. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "Honor Roll". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. 1991-10-20. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Borrelli, George (1992-03-14). "10 Buffalo-Area Delegates Switch To Clinton". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "WNY Figures Invited To Event". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. 1993-01-17. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Heaney, James (1993-06-13). "Democrats Back Robinson in Contest For Legislature". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "Off Main Street Just One Legacy of Jimmy". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. 1993-06-27. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Collison, Kevin (1993-07-27). "Martin's Objection To His Firing Dismissed Commissioner Serves At Pleasure of County Executive, An Authority Points Out". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "Olma, Holt Capture County Legislature Races Incumbent Peoples Has Slim Lead in 7th District, But It's Too Close To Call". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. 1993-09-15. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Warner, Gene (1995-10-22). "Experience Empowers Participants". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Allen, Carl (1995-10-15). "Area Black Men See Washington Event As A Call To Action". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Fairbanks, Phil; McNeil, Harold (1995-11-08). "Collins Out As Newcomers Win 4 Seats - Pitts President". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Fairbanks, Phil (1997-09-10). "In Close Races, Incumbents Czajka and Lockwood Lose - Council Seats". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Collison, Kevin (1997-11-05). "Newcomers Manley, Fontana Win Seats On Council ; 7 - Incumbents Re-Elected Easily". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- McCarthy, Robert J. (1999-09-15). "Double Win By Giambra Poses Threat to Gorski". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Dolan, Thomas J. (1999-11-03). "Strong Democratic Victories Put African-Americans In - Majority". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Hammersley, Margaret (1999-12-30). "Newcomers to Council Speak Out On Their Goals". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "Buffalo's Power 2010 Roll Call Comprehensive, Yet Incomplete. When Predicting The Future, We May Miss A Few. But Bet On These". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. 1996-09-22. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "Rating The Common Council". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. 1999-07-25. Retrieved 2009-02-06.
- Levy, Clifford J. (2000-09-13). "New York Primary: The Legislature; Most Incumbents Prevail Over Primary Challengers". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "2000 New York State Senate" (PDF). New York State Board of Elections. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-08-23. Retrieved 2008-01-27.
- Violanti, Anthony (2001-01-05). "Glory Days - Prayers Answered as Singers Find a National Stage". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "Biography: Mayor Byron Brown" (PDF). www.ci.buffalo.ny.us. City of Buffalo. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- "Biography: Byron William Brown". Uncrowned Kings. Uncrowned Queens Institute for Research and Education on Women, Inc. Archived from the original on November 11, 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Sengupta, Somini (2001-06-22). "Lawmakers Are Ambivalent On Pataki's Casino Proposal". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Stone, Stacey (2003-12-27). "As Tribe Plans Hotel for Casino, Niagara Falls Weighs Effects". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2003-02-03). "As Political Lions Go Gray, Harlem Wanes as Center of Power". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- McCarthy, Robert J. (2004-03-29). "Brown's Team Albany - As State Sen. Byron W. Brown Prepares To Run For Mayor Next Year, He's Crafting A Staff Rich With Political Operatives -- Including Democratic Insider G. Steven Pigeon". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "The 2004 Elections: New York Region; The Races for the New York State Assembly and Senate". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. 2004-11-04. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "Metro Briefing | New York: Buffalo: Mayoral Candidate Announces". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. 2005-02-14. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Staba, David (2005-04-29). "Buffalo Mayor Won't Seek a Fourth Term in the Fall". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2005-06-04). "All Eyes on a Black Candidate in Buffalo's Mayoral Race". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Healy, Patrick D. (2005-08-08). "Off The Trail: 2005 Mayor; Ferrer Has Spitzer's Endorsement. He's Had It for Six Months. You Could Look It Up". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Staba, David (2005-09-15). "State Senator Captures the Democratic Nomination for Mayor". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2005-10-13). "Race Plays Silent Role in Campaign for Mayor of Buffalo". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Staba, David (2005-11-09). "Buffalo Elects First Black Mayor, Who Claims Mandate". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- McCarthy, Robert J.; Meyer, Brian (2006-01-01). "Brown takes office as mayor - Inauguration ceremony, City Hall reception highlight diversity". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Staba, David (2006-09-18). "After a Half-Century of Decline, Signs of Better Times for Buffalo". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Confessore, Nicholas (2006-11-15). "Spitzer, on Upstate Tour, Speaks of Reviving Region". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Fairbanks, Phil (2008-07-02). "Curtain rises on new waterfront - Official opening casts redevelopment of historic location in starring role". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Staba, David (2006-04-17). "A Casino Proposal That Was Once Lauded Is Now Drawing Criticism". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "Buffalo: Casino Moves Forward". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. 2006-10-06. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Belson, Ken (2007-02-19). "Buffalo Looks for Work but Debates Casino's Value". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Staba, David; Belson, Ken (2007-07-04). "Temporary Seneca Casino Opens in Downtown Buffalo". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Chan, Sewell (2006-04-26). "Seeking a National Voice, 15 Mayors Meet on Gun Violence". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "Mayors Against Illegal Guns: Coalition Members". Mayors Against Illegal Guns. Archived from the original on March 27, 2008. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Cardwell, Diane (2007-06-04). "Bloomberg Cast as Enemy No. 1 of Gun Rights". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Meyer, Brian (2006-12-30). "Brown gives himself an 'A' after first year as Buffalo mayor - Others agree he's had some success, but other problems linger". Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2009-02-05.
- "Metro Briefing | New York: Buffalo: Progress Made In Clearing Storm Damage". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. 2006-10-16. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Staba, David (2006-10-14). "Snowstorm Blankets Buffalo, Killing at Least 3". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Belson, Ken (2007-09-13). "Vacant Houses, Scourge of a Beaten-Down Buffalo". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Lee, Trymaine (2008-01-17). "Spitzer Offers Broad Plan to Help Upstate Economy". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Ouroussoff, Nicolai (2008-11-14). "Saving Buffalo's Untold Beauty". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Ouroussoff, Nicolai (2008-11-16). "Historic Buffalo's revival sets new model". San Francisco Chronicle. Hearst Communications Inc. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "Buffalo, N.Y. Fights Crime With Wireless Video Surveillance". Government Technology Magazine. 2008-06-24. Archived from the original on September 6, 2008. Retrieved 2009-02-07.
- Flynn, Lisa (2009-01-29). "Mayor Brown points to accomplishments". WIVB.com. LIN Television Corporation. Archived from the original on 2009-02-01. Retrieved 2009-02-07.
- "Newsman Tim Russert dies at 58". Cable News Network. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. 2008-06-14. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "Special Coverage On The Passing Of Tim Russert: Read the transcript from the special coverage". MSNBC.com. Microsoft. 2008-06-13. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Argetsinger, Amy; Roberts, Roxanne (2008-07-28). "Russert's Name to Live On in His Native City". The Washington Post. Newbank. Retrieved 2009-01-14.
- Sullivan, Ron; Eaton, Joe (2007-10-24). "Garden warrior uproots policy: Unlikely rebel wins change in code to allow more edibles". San Francisco Chronicle. Hearst Communications Inc. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Leight, Allen (2009-09-15). "Byron Brown Wins Democratic Mayoral Primary". WKBW-TV. Retrieved 2009-09-16.[dead link]
- "Buffalo mayor set for 2nd term after primary win". Newsday. 2009-09-15. Archived from the original on September 24, 2009. Retrieved 2009-09-16.
- McCarthy, Bob (2006-01-29). "Smooth sailing, then choppy waters". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Campagna, Darryl (2001-01-05). "Ex-Aide Sworn In As Council Member". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Watson, Rod (2006-02-09). "Will 'sit-out' be the way tosend message?". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- McCarthy, Robert J. (2006-01-10). "Democrats won't back Thompson for State Senate—Republicans to gauge interest of School Board member Jacobs". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Staba, David (2006-02-25). "G.O.P. Sees Rare Opportunity in a State Senate Race". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Spector, Joseph (2006-02-06). "GOP may face stiff battles in House". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2006-05-27). "This Time, a Humbler, More Cautious Cuomo Forges Ahead". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Habuda, Janice L. (2006-05-31). "Cuomo is choice for attorney general - Area native O'Donnell plans to petition for spot on ballot". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2006-09-30). "As Pirro's Campaign Gets Sidetracked, Cuomo Remains Silent". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2006-11-08). "Cuomo Wins Attorney General Race Handily After a Stormy Campaign". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hicks, Jonathan P. (2008-01-31). "Why Dinkins Supports Clinton". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Powell, Michael (2008-02-05). "Many Democrats Still Wavering on a Choice". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Dwoskin, Elizabeth (2008-02-05). "Two Mayors Join Forces to Support Obama". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Staba, David (2008-01-31). "A Pitched Battle Upstate for Democratic Votes". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Confessore, Nicholas (2008-09-08). "What the Political Insiders Will Be Watching, in a Primary Often Overlooked". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- "Caroline Kennedy Withdraws Senate Bid". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. 2009-01-22. Retrieved 2009-01-22.[dead link]
- Chan, Sewell; Pérez-Peña, Richard (2007-01-22). "If Clinton Should Win, Who Would Take Her Place?". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hakim, Danny (2008-11-21). "New York Weighs Options to Fill the Seat of Senator Clinton". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Hakim, Danny (2007-10-04). "Wishing and Hoping for Clinton's Seat". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2008-11-23.
- Kraushaar, Josh (2008-11-14). "Potential Clinton successors". RealClearPolitics. Retrieved 2009-02-05.
- Haberman, Clyde (2009-01-22). "The Paterson Show Takes a Comic Turn, and It Isn't Funny". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-02-05.
- Peters, Jeremy W. (2009-01-21). "Double-Takes by the Governor in Casting a Senator". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-02-05.
- Lovett, Kenneth (2009-01-23). "Critics pounce on Gov. Paterson's choice of Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand for Hillary's Senate seat". New York Daily News. NYDailyNews.com. Retrieved 2009-01-27.
- Peters, Jeremy W. (2010-02-22). "Paterson, Before Meeting Obama, Hones Message". The New York Times. p. A15. Retrieved 2010-03-11.
- Hakim, Danny (2010-01-25). "Still Preparing, Cuomo Courts Black Support". The New York Times. p. A1. Retrieved 2010-03-11.
- Peters, Jeremy W. (2010-01-25). "Don't 'Schmear' Me, Ford Warns". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-03-11.
- Barbaro, Michael (2010-01-25). "An Unofficial Candidate, on the Trail". The New York Times. p. A13. Retrieved 2010-03-11.
- Spina, Matthew (2007-04-07). "Brown's son confessed to detective - Mayor Gave Benefit Of The Doubt Questions still linger over accident details". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Spina, Matthew (2007-04-06). "Police fail to view new tape in car case - Mayor's SUV, driver are shown, college says". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Meyer, Brian (2007-03-31). "Mayor Brown 'baffled' by theft of SUV". The Buffalo News. Newsbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- Prisbell, Eric (2007-07-06). "Camps Turn to Skills, Rather Than Thrills - Shoe Company-Sponsored Events for High School Basketball Players Have Begun to Put an Emphasis on Fundamentals". The Washington Post. Newbank. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "Prospects (2008)". ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved 2008-11-26.
- McShea, Keith (2008-10-27). "Big day for Hamburg's McLimans". The Buffalo News. Retrieved 2008-11-26.
- "Elena Russell and Raymour Nosworthy". The New York Times. 2009-07-12. p. ST10. Retrieved 2010-03-11.
- "Byron W. Brown". Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus. Archived from the original on September 27, 2007. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "2002 New York State Senate" (PDF). New York State Board of Elections. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-08-23. Retrieved 2008-01-27.
- "2004 New York State Senate" (PDF). New York State Board of Elections. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-08-23. Retrieved 2008-01-27.
- Results of the 2005 Buffalo mayoral election. Erie County Board of Elections (received upon request by email from the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library). 2005.
- "Election Results Archive". Erie County Board of Elections. Retrieved 2010-03-12.
- "2013 Erie County General Election Results" (PDF). Erie County Board of Elections. Retrieved 2018-03-02.
|New York State Senate|
| Member of the New York Senate
from the 57th district
Mary Lou Rath
| Member of the New York Senate
from the 60th district
| Mayor of Buffalo
|Party political offices|
| Chair of the New York Democratic Party