Joshua Lafazan (D-Woodbury), the Nassau County representative for Legislative District 18, was named in Forbes Magazine’s “30 under 30” honors list for education in 2022.
The list first started 10 years ago and has reached over 15,000 submissions for the 20 different categories as it has grown in popularity. Members in the list are picked because they are “set to define the next decade and beyond.”
This year, notable members include singer Olivia Rodrigo for music and NBA player Devin Booker for sports. Alumni to have made the list in earlier years are Miley Cyrus, LeBron James and Mark Zuckerberg.
Lafazan, who is currently serving his second term after being elected at 23 years old as Nassau’s youngest-ever legislator, made the prestigious list as an Adjunct Professor at LIU Post, a position he has held since 2019.
At the university, the 27-year-old teaches politics and entrepreneurship.
Accomplishments while serving his district include passing laws regarding mental health and substance abuse, expanding protections for the disabled and building homes for homeless veterans.
Before his political responsibilities, Lafazan was elected to the Syosset school board at 18 years old. He was elected with 82% of the vote one month before he graduated from Syosset High School, and was re-elected by his constituents in 2015.
From Syosset, Lafazan graduated from the Harvard Graduate School of Education with a master’s degree in education policy and management in May 2017, and from the Cornell University ILR School with a bachelor’s degree in industrial and labor relations in May 2016. Josh is currently pursuing his Doctoral Degree from the University of Pennsylvania.
During his re-election campaign, Lafazan ran on the issues of fighting the opioid epidemic, helping veterans and increasing safety in his district.
Regarding his spot on the list, Lafazan said he looks forward to helping the world with the other 29 winners.
“Forbes Under 30 is a reflection of how America’s most diverse and most educated generation is poised to boldly propel this nation and the world into the future,” the legislator said. “It is truly humbling to be recognized by Forbes alongside such an awe-inspiring group of inventors, scientists, entertainers and advocates, and I salute my fellow honorees for their tireless efforts to make the world a better place.”
Lafazan, an independent who caucuses with the Democrats, represents Nassau’s 18th district, which encompasses East Hills, Roslyn Heights, Greenvale, Glen Cove, Bayville, East Norwich, Glen Head, Old Westbury, Mill Neck, Locust Valley, Muttontown, Jericho, Syosset and Woodbury.