It’s been just one year since he graduated from St. Joseph’s College, but 22-year-old Jack Nix is already an elected public official.
“I was inspired by President Obama to run for the school board when he gave his farewell address to the nation,” said Nix of East Patchogue. “He called on young people to run for local office, and I knew in my heart that it was time to step up.”
Nix said he was also inspired by former U.S. Rep. Timothy Bishop, who was his professor at SJC Long Island.
I was inspired by President Obama to run for the school board when he gave his farewell address to the nation. He called on young people to run for local office, and I knew in my heart that it was time to step up.”
“Mr. Bishop took me under his wing and introduced me to countless amazing individuals, including Hillary and Bill Clinton,” said Nix, who transferred to St. Joseph’s his junior year. “It was with his help that SJC sponsored me to attend the Democratic National Convention last July, which ended up being one of the most unforgettable experiences of my life.”
In running his school board campaign as if it were a congressional campaign, Nix tried to make everything as professional as possible.
“I hired a campaign manager, and had friends volunteer to help pass out flyers, ‘PICK NIX’ buttons, and even yard signs,” Nix said. “I ran a campaign that focused on communication and a younger perspective, and I plan on bringing that to BOE meetings during my three year term.”
Nix, founding member and former president of SJC’s Sociology Club, noted that his work as a field organizer for Anna Throne-Holst’s Congressional campaign and internships with U.S. Sens. Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand provided ample preparation for his first political campaign.
“I was doubted by a lot of people – told that I should not be doing this because they thought I would lose badly,” he said. “My win was a shock to many, but with the help of my partner, family, friends, and the mentorship of Tim Bishop – I proved them all wrong.”
Becoming a trustee with South Country schools is just the beginning of an adult life dedicated to public service, Nix said.
“I want to continue life in public office, serving my community,” he said. “I don’t know if that will be on Long Island, or even New York… time will tell. I do believe that I will work in government in some capacity, though.”
Nix credits sociology professor Rachel Schwartz, Ph.D., for helping develop his sociological perspective, as well as his thesis topic, feminism in comedy.
“Dr. Schwartz challenges you to think critically about popular culture, and to make sure you are always using your sociological imagination,” said Nix, who has presented his sociological work at conferences held by the New York State Sociological Association, the Eastern Sociological Society and the American Sociological Association.
Though he’s dedicated to a life in politics, it wasn’t long ago that Nix pondered life on a different stage.
“I wanted to be on Broadway… I laugh when I think about that now,” he said. “If high school-aged-me knew that I would end up doing politics, he’d probably cry laughing because I was so convinced I was to be a theater actor.”