Brian Flynn is a lifelong progressive and small business owner. He has spent his entire adult life fighting, effectively, for the type of progressive change that makes a real difference in people’s lives. A third-generation Greene County resident, his grandfather – along with his family, fled to America to escape religious and economic persecution – and settled in the “Irish Alps” of the Catskill Mountains.
Brian’s activism emerged from a very personal event almost 30 years ago. His big brother, JP, was killed in the 1988 Pan Am 103 bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland. When the government wasn’t being forthcoming with the victims’ families about the cause of the attack, Brian, just 19 years old, drove to Washington DC to get justice for the victims. He was just a teenager but he learned, early on, that when you see something wrong, you have to do something about it.
For years, Brian fought tirelessly to get safety regulations on our airlines that would prevent this type of terrorist attack from happening again, he fought big oil companies who had vested interest in Libyan assets and he helped get the terrorists responsible for the attack convicted.
This experience taught Brian that you can bring about meaningful change in Washington – if you’re organized, tireless and never stop fighting for what’s right. And Brian has been fighting for change ever since.
As a small business owner, Brian believes that CEO’s have a special responsibility to protect the environment, so , so he formed E2: Environmental Entrepreneurs and took on big corporate polluters. Their work led to a new recycling program in New York, more fuel efficient cars on our roads and accountability for corporations that pollute our air and water. For over a decade, he worked with local leaders to create a progressive platform that would make a real difference in people’s lives – and at the top of that list, Medicare for all. Brian and his wife, Amy, volunteered at a local church to help undocumented immigrants build a better life. They also helped start a specialized public school for low income students, in coordination with the teachers union to make sure that every kid – no matter where you came from – has the opportunity to get ahead.
Since he was a young boy, Brian has always had an entrepreneurial spirit – starting his first “business” at age 11, mowing lawns in the neighborhood. Over the years, he’s advised businesses of all shapes and sizes, and recently, Brian ran a small business that manufactured life-saving medical devices – including those specifically designed for children with asthma and for returning veterans.
The grandson of Irish immigrants, Brian’s connection to the 19th District goes back three generations and his family has called Greene County home for the past decade. His great uncle, Michael J. Quill, started the union (TWU) that protected subway workers, that helped them get living wages. Brian’s wife of 18 years, Amy, is a novelist and teacher. Brian and Amy live in Elka Park, near Hunter in Greene County, they have two children, Bo, 14 and Hedda, 12.