Early voting for primary elections is underway and for in the line for 24th Congressional District Democratic Candidates, you’ll see Francis Conole’s name. Conole has roots in Central New York and says he’s used to taking on the unexpected — like trying to get his name out in the world during a global pandemic.

What You Need To Know

  • Francis Conole has been endorsed by two largest Democratic committees in the district
  • Conole graduated Naval Academy just before 9/11 and is an Iraq War veteran
  • Conole's family has also served the community: his grandfather, Patrick Corbett, was Onondaga County sheriff from 1963 to 1978

“We were talking about the threats on our working families and on our middle class. We were talking about the urgency of Central New Yorkers confronting the underinsured, the uninsured, or just paying too much for health care and prescription drugs,” said Conole.

Francis Conole is a Central New York native, his grandmother taught in the Syracuse School District for more than 20 years and his grandfather, Patrick Corbett, was the only Democrat to become Onondaga County sheriff.

“I want people to know that, first of all I was born and raised here in Central New York. I come from a family that I’m very proud of that’s been serving our community for generations,” said Conole.

Conole graduated from Westhill High School, and then joined the Naval Academy, graduating just before 9/11. During his career in the military he had many roles, He served in the Office of Naval Intelligence, worked alongside Iraqi Forces, and was a policy advisor at the Pentagon.

“I was called to serve when we served at a time when we faced great threats external, and now I’m called to serve great threats internal,” said Conole.

Wanting new leadership, he launched his campaign in April 2019. Not knowing that a global pandemic would create a whole new set of challenges on top of being a new candidate.

“It’s been interesting, we’ve had to navigate during this time of COVID, although I will tell you throughout my career I’ve been placed in new and interesting and challenging environments,” said Conole.

He’s found ways to adapt his initial strategy to the online world. Social media being a key component for him, he interacts with people the most on his Facebook page.

“I think just having to be inside and you just have to continue to get creative and look for creative ways to connect with voters,” said Conole.

As far as whether or not it's shifted his focus on issues, Conole says the pandemic has only heightened the urgency to make change for middle class families and the health care system.

“I’ve spent my life serving our country and fighting for American interests and American values, and I will continue to fight for the people of Central New York and fight for a better America and better region,” said Conole.

Conole has been endorsed by both the Cayuga and Onondaga Democratic Committees.