Chair, Housing Committee
A lifelong resident of Harlem, Assemblyman Keith L.T. Wright has earned a reputation as a dedicated and thoughtful public servant who gets results for his constituents. Active in his Harlem community, Wright has helped grow small businesses, create affordable housing, and increase economic opportunities for all New Yorkers. Wright was elected to the Assembly in 1992, and appointed Assistant Majority Whip in 1998. As chair of the Labor Committee, Wright is currently charged with the important task of leading the fight for workers rights, increased unemployment coverage and fair pay throughout New York State. Wright was the prime sponsor of the first-in-the-nation "Domestic Workers’ Bill of Rights" which ensures that domestic workers receive fair wages, working hours and benefits. Among other legislative accomplishments, Wright, as a member of the Housing Committee, was a co-sponsor of the critical legislation which protected rent controls. Wright also chairs the Subcommittee on Public Housing, where he champions the rights of tenants through extensive hearings and legislation. A member of the Correction Committee and the Task Force on Criminal Justice Reform, Wright is a strong opponent of the death penalty and the Rockefeller Drug Laws and an advocate for criminal justice reform. Following the terrible Alberta Spruill incident, a case of mistaken identity that led to death when police stormed the wrong apartment, Wright introduced legislation that would reform "no knock" search warrants. That legislation was an integral part of the Community Relations Policing Package, which served to change the way in which the police dealt with communities of color. Assemblyman Wright also led the charge for drug and alcohol testing of police officers after they discharge their weapon in the line of duty, a policy ultimately adopted internally by the New York City Police Department Other committee assignments include Ways and Means, the committee which handles all budgetary legislation in the State Assembly and the Codes Committee, which handles legislation containing criminal penalties. Wright is also the former chair and current member of the Black, Puerto Rican and Hispanic Legislative Caucus and a member of the Puerto Rican/ Hispanic Task Force. As chair of the Harlem Community Development Corporation (CDC), Wright has leveraged limited resources to make a substantial, tangible impact on economic development in Harlem, developing and renovating properties to create hundreds of units of affordable housing, grow small businesses, increase services for children and seniors and expand cultural venues. Wright is also responsible for bringing to Harlem its first High School football team in decades – the 369th Harlem Hellfighters of the Thurgood Marshall Academy. A graduate of Rutgers Law School, Tufts University, the Fieldston School and the Ethical Culture School, Wright credits his parents for teaching him the importance of strong values, commitment to community and defense of civil rights. Wright is the son of legendary New York Supreme Court Justice Bruce Wright and mother Constance Wright – a long time educator and former principal in the New York City public school system. Prior to serving as Assemblyman, Wright held positions in the City’s Human Resources Administration, the Manhattan Borough President’s Office and the New York City Transit Authority. Keith Wright lives in Harlem with his wife, Susan, and children, Jared and Jordan. He is a board member of Tufts University, and attends St. Phillips Episcopal Church.