Al was born and raised in the small steel-mill town of Ambridge located on the banks of the Ohio river in western Pennsylvania. He was born into a large close-knit family in the area. His father was a self-employed plumber who was also a disabled Army veteran. He had sustained life threatening injuries during combat in Korea and as a result he was awarded The Purple Heart. Al’s mother was a stay at home mom, who kept the household running smoothly and who was also deeply devoted to her family. Al came from humble beginnings. When he was born, his family lived in housing projects. Eventually they were able to move out of the projects, to a nice home only 100 yards away. Al experienced from birth, what working-class life was like.
Al attended and graduated from Ambridge High School where he participated in numerous sports. He did not immediately go to college after his graduation from high school, but he instead decided to take a “gap year” so that he could decide what career path he wanted to take. During this year, Al worked numerous jobs to save money. Al states, “Regardless of the job I was employed to do, each job taught me lessons that I will draw upon for the rest of my life”. Al believes that good honest work is a cure for a myriad of things that “ail ya”. He states of his jobs, ”Every job that I worked had its unique qualities and skill sets that I needed to learn. More importantly though, I learned general lessons that one needs to be successful. Those are: be on time, do the job you were hired to do, stick to it even when it gets tough, and be appreciative of the job and the employers who provided you the opportunity to work and earn money”. Al began work at an early age. As a child, he began assisting his father on plumbing jobs. He says of those times, “Yes the work was hard, dirty and physical but I loved it because I developed physical strength, learned a skill and got to spend time with my father. What more could you ask for, right”?
As a 12 year old boy, Al had a dream that he would live in North Carolina and he never forgot that vision. In 1982, at the age of 19, he left his small town in western PA, to attend Western Carolina University(WCU) in Cullowhee, NC. He graduated from WCU with honors, earning a B.S. Degree in Criminal Justice. While he attended WCU, Al became team captain during his senior year of the Catamount’s track and field team as well as the president of the WCU Barbell Club. Al was selected for a national scholarship that was sponsored by the FBI. This scholarship assisted him in paying for his college tuition. He also worked during his collegiate years in addition to focusing on his studies in order to assist with school expenses that he had to cover on his own. Some of the jobs included working for the University as a maintenance worker, lifeguarding, coaching a local swim team, construction work, and even dipping ice cream at a local ice-cream shop. Al says “those were really great times, I had to work…I always did…and I never minded it at all. I had a lot of fun and enjoyed always working with average Joes and Janes…just like me.” Al continues “I was not born into a life of financial privilege, and I am not complaining one bit. Likewise I do not envy anyone who was. In my case, and like many students, I had to work and that’s just how it was. To be honest, I would have felt uncomfortable not working. Work was good for me. It kept me grounded and focused.”
Following his graduation in 1987, Al travelled the country looking for work in his career field. After several years, Al decided that he wanted to get back to the State that was his first love, North Carolina. He wanted to really experience NC and see firsthand how such a diverse state could exist. Al saved his money, bought a backpack, physically prepared himself and on April 10th, 1989, he started out on the adventure of a lifetime. Al walked the state starting from the North Carolina/Tennessee border at Deals Gap, NC, and finished up at the Wright Brother’s Monument in Kill Devil Hills, Outer Banks. Al walked the back roads and secondary roads as he zig zagged his way through the different regions of North Carolina. He states, “I wanted to experience as much as I could firsthand of our great state, and I figured the best way to do that was to walk it.” Al’s journey covered over a thousand miles as he walked from small town to small town. He worked and earned money in those towns to get him to his next destination. Al says, ”My purpose was to meet the people and experience what life was like for folks throughout this State. The people of North Carolina that I had the privilege to meet were some of the best people. They were honest, kind, hardworking and willing to help their neighbors and strangers alike.” This walk renewed his faith in the decency of Americans and especially his fellow North Carolinians. Al walked every step of the way and his love for his state only grew after that journey. “I realized that we North Carolinians get to call the most beautiful and diverse state home, and it is truly the best state in the Union”.
In 1990 Al accepted a position as a Police Officer for the Charlotte Police Department where he served the community for 28 years before retiring in April 2018. He served in a variety of positions of which include: Patrol Officer, Field Training Officer, Traffic Enforcement, Community Coordinator, Plain Clothes and Undercover assignments, Detective, Community Engagement Officer and Headquarters Security Team. Al states that as a police officer, working for a large police agency, “One learns very quickly how government policies and laws can affect citizens in their daily lives, and how enforcing those laws affect the officers tasked with that job.” He knows from firsthand experience that police officers are dealing with the constitutional and civil liberties of every citizen, daily. He states, “Police work takes a lot of confidence and integrity because of the authority that officers have been entrusted with by their fellow citizens over their lives.” He continues, “...As an officer you better take that power and authority very seriously and understand that your role is to be a public servant, a Peace Officer, and always stay faithful to the oath that you swore to uphold and defend the Constitution and the Rights of the People.”
Al began his political journey in the early 1990’s when as a police officer he could not help but observe the incidents that were taking place throughout the country. “Things like Ruby Ridge and Waco, the Los Angeles Riots, and The Oklahoma City bombings were taking place and accusations were being leveled that the Federal Government had become unconstitutional.” Al decided to read the founding documents for himself, including The Declaration of Independence. Al believes that reading those documents in their entirety, drastically changed his perspective and how he looked at the purpose of government. This reevaluation forced him to investigate the two major political parties in this country and what they stood for. He realized that both major parties lacked the Constitutional perspective when it came down to governing. Al began to research if there were any political parties in America that upheld the Constitution as its primary source of governing. That is when he found a small, ,relatively unknown political party called The Constitution Party. He then contacted a few individuals in North Carolina who had a similar interest. That’s when they began a State Affiliate to the Constitution Party in the great State of North Carolina.
In 2008, Al and a few other individuals organized a convention in order to form another political party in North Carolina. The Constitution Party of North Carolina took form, and has been pushing for positive political change in North Carolina ever since. This party is based on the philosophy of having a constitutionally constrained government. The Constitution Party of North Carolina is an all-volunteer organization and gained ballot access in North Carolina in 2018.