• Born in 1954

    Born in 1954

    Curtis was born in 1954 in Canarsie, Brooklyn, to a Catholic family of Polish and Italian descent.

  • First Recycling Center

    First Recycling Center

    Curtis opened the first recycling center in Brooklyn, NY, when he was 14. Known as the teenage “neighborhood junk collector,” he collected empty cans, glass bottles, newspapers, and scrap metal, storing them in his basement after preparing them for recycling. Once a month, a tractor-trailer would collect these items. Curtis..Read More

  • Saved a Family

    Saved a Family

    At 15, while delivering newspapers, Curtis saved a family from their burning home. He made three trips into the burning building and saved six people’s lives. For his heroism, he was named Newspaper Boy of the Year by the Daily News.

  • Met President Nixon

    Met President Nixon

    President Richard Nixon declared that October 16, 1971, as “National Newspaperboy Day” to honor Curtis Sliwa’s heroic efforts. “[Curtis Sliwa] is an outstanding young man who proved his courage in a daring rescue of six persons from a blazing home early one morning while he was serving his route.  He..Read More

  • National Newspaperboy Day

    National Newspaperboy Day

    In 1971, President Nixon declared that October 16, 1971 be known as “National Newspaper boy Day” in honor of Curtis Sliwa’s heroic efforts as a newspaper boy.

  • Rock Brigade

    Rock Brigade

    In the late 70’s, while working as a night manager at a McDonalds in the Bronx, Curtis Sliwa formed a group called the “Rock Brigade.” The goal of this group was to clean up a neglected New York City. Curtis went to the people he worked with, put his arm..Read More

  • Magnificent 13

    Magnificent 13

    To make up for a scarcity of police patrols, Curtis retooled the focus of the volunteer effort to fill the void in crime fighting and the group took to the subway. The 13-member, multi-racial team of volunteers became known as “The Magnificent Thirteen.” The group agreed to ride the subways..Read More

  • Guardian Angels

    Guardian Angels

    As word spread of the Magnificent Thirteen’s heroic deeds, more rushed to join the efforts. On February 13, 1979, Curtis Sliwa created “The Guardian Angels.” Volunteers of all ages go through weeks-long rigorous training, in which they learn martial arts techniques in order to defend themselves, enforce discipline, and make..Read More

  • Puerto Rican Parade

    Puerto Rican Parade

    Curtis and the Guardian Angels have been marching in the annual Puerto Rican Day Parade since 1983.

  • Protect Immigrants

    Protect Immigrants

    In 1985, immigrants were being preyed upon by Tijuana police and border bandits as they came across into California. They were being raped, robbed, and assaulted. However, no one came to their aid on either side of the border. Immigrant groups asked the Guardian Angels to patrol the canyons separating..Read More

  • Media Career

    Media Career

    Curtis Sliwa began his media career in 1990, where he started as a radio broadcaster at WABC-AM. Sliwa has hosted various radio programs on WABC, and in 2000, he became the co-host of the long-running Curtis and Kuby in the Morning.

  • Protect Jewish Community

    Protect Jewish Community

    Since 1991, the Guardian Angels have come to the aid of the Jewish community when there have been antic-sematic attacks in Crown Heights, Williamsburg, and Borough Park.

  • Courage of Conscience Award

    Courage of Conscience Award

    In 1992, Sliwa received the prestigious Courage of Conscience Award from the Peace Abbey at the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston for his work of establishing the Guardian Angels in major cities on every continent in the world.

  • Curtis Targeted in Mob Hit

    Curtis Targeted in Mob Hit

    On June 19, 1992, Curtis Sliwa was kidnapped and shot by two gunmen after entering a stolen taxi in Manhattan. The taxi picked up Sliwa near his home in the East Village, and a gunman hiding in the front passenger seat jumped up and fired several shots, hitting Sliwa in..Read More

  • Stickball Commissioner of NYC

    Stickball Commissioner of NYC

    In 1993, Curtis was appointed the stickball commissioner of New York City.  He supervised and played in the New York Daily News sponsored city-wide championship.  He continued to promote stickball as NYC’s game and introduced it into Havana, Tokyo, Berlin, and Denver. In 2010, he created a stickball tournament for..Read More

  • Hotdog Eating Championship

    Hotdog Eating Championship

    Curtis Sliwa has been a competitor in gastronomical eating contests for years. In 1996, after two failed attempts to win the Nathans’ famous hotdog eating championship, on July 4th, he finally placed third.  The first-place winner was Ed Krachie, the 260 lb. Maspeth incinerator. Sliwa had almost defeated him two..Read More

  • King Neptune Annual Mermaid Day Parade

    King Neptune Annual Mermaid Day Parade

    In 1999, Curtis was crowned King Neptune alongside Queen Latifah as Queen Mermaid. Coney Island has a flavor and tradition that must be protected as the area undergoes development. The safety and quality of life of Coney Island residents and visitors is of paramount importance to Sliwa.

  • Junior Guardian Angels

    Junior Guardian Angels

    In 2003, Curtis Sliwa began the Junior Guardian Angels Program for boys and girls who were from 6-15 years old. They do not patrol, but rather do other forms of community service. They have after school activities at the Guardian Angels Training Center in Washington Heights where they learn martial..Read More

  • Guardian Angels Grow

    Guardian Angels Grow

    In 2011, it was noted that the Guardian Angels had spread to nine different countries and 82 cities around the world.

  • 77th Arrest

    77th Arrest

    In 2017, Curtis Sliwa was arrested for the 77th time while trying to serve court ordered papers on Mayor de Blasio at Gracie Mansion. At the time, Sliwa was chairman of NYC’s reform party. Sliwa believed that Mayor de Blasio had recently had the reform party candidate removed from the..Read More

  • Nancy Sliwa

    Nancy Sliwa

    In July 2018, Curtis Sliwa married long-time girlfriend and attorney Nancy Regula, who serves as the Director of Animal Protection in the Guardian Angels organization.

  • Battling Looters During Riots

    Battling Looters During Riots

    Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, major cities have been faced with aggressive riots and lootings. Curtis Sliwa and the Guardian Angels stated their goal is to keep order and protect the community, but one night during the riots, a few members of the group were attacked themselves by looters trying to..Read More

  • Protecting Asian Community

    Protecting Asian Community

    Curtis Sliwa and his fellow Guardian Angels have taken it upon themselves to put out extra patrol on the streets of Chinatown, Sunset Park, Flushing, and other areas that have large Chinese populations. Their goal has been to protect those that have been targeted for hate crimes amid the COVID-19 pandemic...Read More

  • Running for Mayor of NYC 2021

    Running for Mayor of NYC 2021

    In the beginning of 2020, Curtis Sliwa announced he will officially be running for NYC Mayor 2021. Sliwa is quoted saying, “’De Blasio recently said in his state of the city address that he wants to save our city after spending his six years in office destroying it. Having failed..Read More

In the late 1970’s, New York City was a modern-day equivalent of the Wild West. Murder and violent crime were the norm. A trip on the Subway was an exercise in urban survival. Residents of the city resigned themselves to the reality as the politicians and police seemed powerless.

However, a young man from Brooklyn, a former Jesuit student, felt someone had to do something. Curtis Sliwa stepped forward. He knew that the city he was born in, the city he loved, deserved better. Curtis Sliwa acted.


What started as a group of him and a dozen other dedicated volunteers riding the subways of New York to serve as protectors of everyday law-abiding citizens, grew into the “Guardian Angels” that residents of the Big Apple have come to know and love. With their distinctive Red Berets, they are as New York as Central Park or a potato knish. They operate under the motto “we dare to care” and have proved it over and over through the years, in some cases with their lives.

These days, the Guardian Angels have chapters in thirteen countries and over one hundred cities. While the original hometown group of thirteen has grown to thousands across the globe, the mission has not changed: to make a positive change in the community by involving members of our communities to step forward and take an active role. While the classic street patrols are the lifeblood of the organization, we all know that reaching the youth in our neighborhoods, especially the most at risk, is crucial. Once again, the Guardian Angels is meeting the need.

The “Junior Angels” program, their youth outreach programs, and their Washington Heights Community Center, provides help for kids with everything from homework to nutrition while getting them actively involved in their community. What Curtis Sliwa believed back in the beginning and till this day is that when people take an active role in their community, it makes things better for all of us.