Ari Kagan was born in Minsk, Belarus, in 1967. He graduated from Journalism Department at Lvov military political college (Ukraine) in 1988.
He was lucky to start his journalistic career in the former Soviet Union when President Michael Gorbachev declared a new period of Glasnost and Perestroika, encouraging some criticism of Soviet government and Communist Party.
Ari worked as a reporter in many military and civic newspapers in Latvia and Belarus before emigrating to the United States in 1993.
In New York Ari worked full time as a journalist for several Russian language weeklies: Yevreski Mir, Russian Jewish Forward, Vecherniy New York.
He went to study English, Business and Political Science at nights. Kagan graduated with honors from Baruch College (BBA in Marketing Advertising and Business Administration) in 1999.
In 2006 Ari ran for New York State Assembly in 46 AD (Brighton Beach, Coney Island and Bay Ridge) and narrowly lost Democratic primaries to Alec Brook-Krasny (49.2% - 50.8%).
From 2008 to 2010 Kagan worked as a Community Liaison for the United States Congressman Michael McMahon (D-Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, Staten Island). From February 2011 till December 2013, Ari worked as a Community Coordinator for New York City Comptroller John Liu.
Since January 1, 2014, Ari has been working as Community Liaison for City Comptroller Scott Stringer.
He also works as a host of a daily radio news show "City News" and has his own weekly TV show "Here in America" on Russian Television Network of America.
Ari is proud of his family: beautiful and patient wife Bela, talented son Yakov, who graduated from Vanderbilt University, wonderful daughter Victoria, who loves arts, and fabulous mother-in-law Milya. Kagan loves to read, to swim and to travel. But most of all, he loves to help people.
For more than 22 years Ari worked as a volunteer to help seniors and people with disabilities, jobless people and underprivileged children, small business owners and tenants, immigrants and low income New Yorkers, hard working families.
On September 13, 2012, Ari Kagan was elected a Democratic District Leader in 45 Assembly District (Brooklyn). He received 62% of votes in a race against long-serving incumbent.
In 2013, Ari Kagan ran for NYC Council in 48 CD and finished second in a five-way race, narrowly losing to Chaim Deutsch.
Being a moderate Democrat, Ari believes that Democrats in Southern Brooklyn need to be more energetic, innovative and creative in attracting new voters, especially from Russian speaking, Asian American and Orthodox Jewish communities.