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About Brendan

Raised in Winston-Salem from a lower-middle-class family, I understand the meaning of hard work and service to others. At times my parents would work 2 jobs each, including my father working the midnight shift at a convenience store on weekends, to provide our family a good life. That included attending Catholic school because they understood the benefits of a solid education and a moral purpose. My mother returned to school in her mid-40s, taking night classes at our local community college to learn about computers to help her transition into a clerical career path because her manufacturing plant was shutting down. I got my first job before I was even 15 and continued to balance school, work, and sports through the rest of my high school years.

Directly after High School, I enlisted in the Marine Corps. Bill Clinton's election and his introduction of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" made me feel an obligation to serve a nation that began to finally fulfill its declaration of "All men are created equal" to other Americans not like me. After my military training, I attended college, first completing my associate's degree at Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington, before finishing my bachelor's degree in political science at UNC-Greensboro. I worked to pay my tuition throughout my college career, supplementing it with student loans. My career in the service industry had me working shoulder-to-shoulder with many legal and illegal immigrants in cities like Durham and High Point. I heard their stories of how they got here, what working here meant for their families, and some who hoped to return to their homeland someday.

The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense or U.S. Marine Corps visual information does not imply or constitute DOD endorsement. 

After graduating college, which included Dean's list and national society honors, I spent some time helping other Democratic candidates with their national and statewide races, both in New Hampshire and Raleigh. After several hard-fought battles, I transitioned careers into Financial Planning by opening a firm in Charlotte, helping individuals and families with their financial goals. Growing up with parents who struggled with money, I wanted to help others avoid some of my parents' costly mistakes. It offered me the opportunity to sit with folks and hear about their goals and dreams, their concerns, and the obstacles they faced. It allowed me to understand daily the struggles of people who weren't necessarily like me and understand how much money and the economy impact our daily lives.

After 12 plus years and multiple local awards, I sold my Financial Planning firm to my partner and began other small business pursuits. However, my plans were paused when my wife excelled in her career. Opportunities for her growth meant the possibility of moving, both in and out of state. Having seen career success myself, I became a dedicated homemaker, supporting her career accomplishments by doing whatever was needed for her to achieve those goals. The planning and birth of our daughter brought on a new role, caregiver, gaining a new understanding of the struggles and problems that women and their families face when tasked as necessary breadwinners. Healthcare, childcare, and gender equality have become regular topics at the dinner table. I've seen a child's benefits from having parents home in those first few months.