The first Greek elected official in New York City and state attorney general hopeful became engaged to Fordham Law School student Clare Cusack, 30, over President's Day weekend. "We started dating about four years ago and I couldn't be happier," Gianaris said. They met while both were staff members for state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan). He was counsel to the speaker, she was an analyst for a higher education committee and they hit it off. Gianaris, 34, popped the question on a trip to St. Petersburg, Fla. In a postcard moment, he asked her to marry him on the beach just after sunset."She accepted, thank God," Gianaris said. The young couple has a hectic year ahead of them, so they have yet to set a date. "We'll find a time not too distant," he said.Cusack, of Long Island, is starting a new job in Manhattan in the fall after she finishes law school.Gianaris, a son of Greek immigrants in his second term in the Assembly, will be crisscrossing the state in preparation for the 2006 election to replace outgoing Attorney General Elliot Spitzer, who is expected to run for governor. While Gianaris has amassed an impressive $1.5 million in campaign funds, he faces stiff competition from several potential Democratic opponents: former city Public Advocate Mark Green, former Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Andrew Cuomo and state Assemblyman Richard Brodsky (D-Westchester).Reach reporter Matthew Monks by e-mail at news@times
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