Councilman Justin Brannan was born and raised in Brooklyn, the proud son of a teacher and a record salesman. After attending PS 185, McKinley JHS and Xaverian High School, Brannan studied journalism in college before embarking on a career as a professional musician. His bands released several albums and toured the world – performing in over fifty countries across five continents.
Later, while working at a New York City radio station, Brannan got involved in union organizing and fought to recover unpaid wages for his co-workers. He then served as chief of staff to his predecessor Councilman Vinnie Gentile before being tapped by Mayor de Blasio to help oversee the expansion of his historic universal pre-K initiative as director of intergovernmental affairs at the NYC Department of Education.
A believer in the importance of making government work efficiently and making life easier for working and middle class families, Brannan was first elected in 2017 from a crowded field of ten candidates to represent southwest Brooklyn. With too many people feeling that the government only works for the wealthy and well-connected, Brannan vowed to always fight for the “little guy.” Today, when he isn’t personally making sure your garbage gets picked up or rescuing a wayward kitten in a tree, Brannan serves as Chairman of the powerful Committee on Finance where he oversees the largest municipal budget in the country.
Whether pushing to expand the New York City Human Rights Law to empower survivors of domestic violence or delivering the first New York City property tax rebate in 15 years, Brannan has never backed down from a fight. As the lucky recipient of a cornea transplant, Brannan has pushed for free vision care & eyeglasses for the poor. Often acknowledging that the three chords he learned at McKinley afforded him a career as a world-touring musician, Brannan has been a champion for increased arts & music funding in our public schools. Since first being elected, Brannan has brought back over $100 million to southwest Brooklyn through investments in parks, playgrounds, libraries and five new public schools.
Justin lives in Bay Ridge with his amazing wife Leigh, an artist, educator & small business owner. They share their home with two retired racing greyhounds: Luna and Fiorello.