Andrew Orringer was born in New York City and later lived in New Rochelle NY. When he was 13, he and his family moved to Lake Placid. He has one sister, who lives in New York City, is married and has a 13 year old daughter. Andrew went to grade school in New Rochelle and attended Northwood School in Lake Placid. He later attended SUNY Plattsburgh. Andrew lived and worked as a Special Agent, of the US Secret Service, in Burlington in the early 90s. He and May met in San Francisco in 1998. He and his wife, May, moved back to Burlington in 2008. They had their daughter, Lucy, in 2012, who was born at the University of Vermont Medical Center.
I asked Andrew about his professional life as a Secret Service Agent, which sounds very interesting, and brings him in contact with challenging assignments around the world. He joined the Secret Service in 1983, before that he was a bartender and part-time ski coach in Lake Placid NY.
There are two branches of the Secret Service: Special Agents and Uniform Division Officers. Both branches work together to protect facilities like the White House and Vice President’s Residence. The Uniform Division Officers guard the White House and the Vice President’s Residence. The Special Agents also guard the President, Vice President and visiting dignitaries.
The Secret Service is a duel mission agency, which conducts major bank fraud and computer investigations, and protects the President, Vice President, former Presidents and visiting foreign Heads of State and government. The Secret Service coordinates the efforts of other agencies like the Transport Security Administration (TSA), US Park Police, The US Capitol Police, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and the US Department of State, and events like the 2002 winter Olympics, the opening of the UN General Assembly, the Presidential debates, the State of the Union speeches. The Secret Service also is the lead agency in major events in the US such as the Presidential Inaugurations, Democratic and Republican debates.
While in the Secret Service, Andrew was assigned to the Presidential Protective Division for President George W. Bush (43). He was also assigned to the Vice Presidential Protective Division for Vice Presidents, Quayle, Gore and Cheney. In addition he was a Department of Homeland Security Attaché at the US Embassy in Canada. With his assignments in the Secret Service, he travelled all over the world, including Asia, Australia, Europe, South America, Africa, the Arctic circle, Middle East, including Israel for the 40th and 50th anniversaries of the founding of the State. He was in the West Bank and the Palestinian Territories for the 2006 elections with Former President Carter, who served as an election monitor.
When asked what attracted him and May to Temple Sinai, he said, “I had belonged to the Temple when I first lived here in the early 1990s, and I liked the Temple and Rabbi Glazier. We want our daughter, Lucy, to identify with her Jewish roots and have her Bat Mitzvah there. We enjoy going to the events at the Temple and have made good friends there”.
Besides his professional life, Andrew enjoys playing golf, skiing and going to his daughter’s activities. For reading, he mostly enjoys books about politics and history. This is a good year for both!
For those thinking about a career in the Secret Service, I asked Andrew if there were any specific college courses that would prepare them for this profession. He said, “There are no college courses that prepare you for the Secret Service, the best thing to do is to get a college degree and some work experience either in the military or law enforcement fields”.
Thank you Andrew for sharing your life story with us and the next time you see Andrew and his family, perhaps you’ll have questions of your own.