Doug Emhoff is the husband of United States Vice President Kamala Harris with an official title as “The Second Gentleman.” Emhoff, an entertainment lawyer, was born in Brooklyn and spent the first five years of his life in New York City. Emhoff has fully embraced his new title tweeting that as the first “Second Gentleman,” he will build upon the “legacy of progress” of the women who served before him in this role.
I am honored to be the first male spouse of an American President or Vice President. But I’ll always remember generations of women have served in this role before me—often without much accolade or acknowledgment. It’s their legacy of progress I will build on as Second Gentleman.
— Douglas Emhoff (@SecondGentleman) January 21, 2021
Emhoff was born on October 13, 1964 and grew up in Midwood in the apartment building at 1480 Ocean Avenue. Midwood, a predominantly Jewish neighborhood, is also where Ruth Bader Ginsburg grew up in. Her childhood home, schools and synagogue are still standing. In fact, her synagogue, the East Midwood Jewish Center at 1625 Ocean Avenue is just a block and a half south from Emhoff’s childhood home. Midwood was also the location of the early film industry in the United States, where remnants of the old studios can still be seen.
East Midwood Jewish Center
Emhoff’s building was constructed in 1936 and is a rental-only building with 44 apartments. It is six floors tall with a fairly spacious lobby off of which a handful of ground floor apartments are located. The lobby has a decorative brick fireplace with a mantel surrounding it, as well as two stained glass windows. A single elevator leads up to the apartments above the ground floor.
City records show that there was a garage (“for 3 cars”) located at the site prior to the apartment building that stands today at 1480 Ocean Avenue. The garage was completed in 1926. Ten years later, the new six-story building was completed which originally contained apartments for 45 families. This section of the block looks virtually unchanged from that time until now — you can see a 1940s tax photograph of the building at 1480 Ocean Avenue and its neighbors here.
Emhoff’s father, Michael, was a women’s shoe designer. The family relocated to the Lakeridge community of Matawan-Old Bridge, New Jersey in 1969 when Emhoff was about five years old. He attended Cedar Ridge High School, a school that no longer exists. Emhoff tweeted in 2019, “New Jersey is still very much in my veins.” We know from the school’s 1979 yearbook that Emhoff was a member of school’s ski club.
Emhoff and his family moved to California in 1981 when he was 17, and he graduated from Agoura High School in Agoura, California. It’s located north of Los Angeles between Westlake and Calabasas. Other notable graduates include the current teen heartthrob, Noah Centineo (To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before). He then went to California State University, Northridge and USC Gould School of Law. He officially left his law firm, DLA Piper, where he was a partner, before the inauguration.
Emhoff was previously married to Kersin Emhoff with whom he has two children, Cole and Ella. Ella, who is a student at New York’s Parson School of Design and a Brooklyn resident, made a splash at the recent Presidential Inauguration for her fashion style.
Next, check out the Brooklyn locations connected to Ruth Bader Ginsburg.