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Who Is Chuck Schumer's Wife, Iris Weinshall?

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Who Is Chuck Schumer's Wife, Iris Weinshall?

There's an old joke that the most dangerous place in Washington is between Senator Chuck Schumer and a camera. The Senate Minority Leader is famously outspoken, and has been a frequent guest on cable news and Sunday morning talk shows over his many decades in Washington.

Schumer will also speak on the second night of the 2020 Democratic National Convention, endorsing Joe Biden for president and Kamala Harris as vice president. However, his wife is not often mentioned and doesn't make a lot of appearances by the Senator's side.

Who is Chuck Schumer's wife, Iris Weinshall?

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It turns out that the reason she isn't in the public eye as much as he is, is because while he's in DC ,she's busy back in New York with an amazing career of her own. In fact, Iris Weinshall has been a force in New York City government for nearly 30 years. 

Here's what to know about Democratic minority leader Chuck Schumer's wife, Iris Weinshall.

Who is Iris Weinshall? She's a Brooklyn native.

Weinshall was born in Brooklyn in 1953 and hasn't strayed far from home in the years since. She got her undergrad degree at Brooklyn College and went on to get a master's of Public Administration at New York University.

In 1980, she married fellow Brooklyn native Chuck Schumer, who had been a state legislator since 1974 and was in his first term in Congress at the time. Their reception was at Windows on the World, which was on top of the former World Trade Center. Weinshall and Schumer settled down in Brooklyn.

Weinshall and Schumer live bi-city.

Well, they sort of made their home in Brooklyn. Weinshall is a full-time New York resident but Schumer spends a good deal his time in Washington, D.C., attending to matters in the Senate.

For 30 years, he rather famously lived in a Capitol Hill rowhouse owned by Democratic Representative George Miller. Schumer and Miller, along with Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, and a rotating cast of other Democratic lawmakers, were roommates for decades.

Their house was notoriously untidy and their diet, while they were there, consisted of mostly cold cereal. If Iris ever visited her husband there, she would have found the quarters cramped and privacy hard to come by, as Schumer didn't have a bedroom. He slept on a bed squeezed between the kitchen and dining area.

Schumer eventually got his own apartment in 2014 after Miller retired from Congress and sold the house.

Who are Chuck Schumer's kids?

Despite the separate living quarters, the couple has raised two daughters.

Allison is a Harvard grad who works in the tech industry. Jessica also went to Harvard for college, and then got a law degree from Yale. She is now chief of staff at the Robin Hood Foundation.

What does Iris Weinshall do for a living?

While her husband was living in squalor and ascending the leadership ladder in D.C., Weinshall was working various functions for the municipal management of New York.

She jumped around in her early career, serving as Senior Vice President of the New York State Urban Development Corporation. Later on, she became Regional Vice President of Integrated Resources, Inc. Then, she served as President of the Financial Services Corporation.

From 1988-1996, Weinshall served as the Deputy Commissioner for Management and Budget at the New York City Department of Environmental Protection. She also served as the First Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Citywide Administrative Services.

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In 2000, she was appointed Commissioner of the New York City Department of Transportation by then-mayor Rudy Giuliani.

She stayed in the job until 2007, even after Giuliani was replaced by Mike Bloomberg.

But tragedy caused her to step down.

Unfortunately, Weinshall's tenure as Commissioner wasn't without controversy. She held the position in 2011 when a Staten Island Ferry crash killed 11 people.

The investigation into the crash noted, “the failure of the New York City Department of Transportation to implement and oversee safe, effective operating procedures.”

After leaving the Department of Transportation, Weinshall went on to work at the City University of New York. In this position, she oversaw the planning, building, and maintenance of physical structures for the university.

Iris Weinshall also had a role at the New York Public Library.

Since 2014, Weinshall has been the Chief Operating Officer of the New York Public Library, where she oversees the venerable institution's budget and its $1 billion endowment.

She doesn't oversee their social media accounts, but the library has a very cool Twitter feed loaded with fun facts and information.

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Rebekah Kuschmider has been writing about celebrities, pop culture, entertainment, and politics since 2010. Her work has been seen at Ravishly, Babble, Scary Mommy, The Mid, Redbook online, and The Broad Side. 

Editor's Note: This article was originally posted in September 2018 and was updated with the latest information.