Bill Hochul was born in Buffalo, New York in 1959. He graduated from Cheektowaga Central High School in Cheektowaga, New York, just outside Buffalo. Hochul earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Notre Dame in 1981 and a Juris Doctor from State University of New York at Buffalo in 1984. Hochul served as an assistant U.S. attorney in the Western District of New York from 1991 to 2010. During that time, he served as Chief of the Anti-Terrorism Unit from 2002 to 2007 and as chief of the National Security Division from 2007 to 2010.
Bill Hochul was one of the 18 members of the Buffalo Joint Terrorism Task Force awarded the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service, the highest award of the Department of Justice, for “their exemplary performance in the dismantlement of the Lackawanna, New York terrorist cell” which resulted in the 2003 convictions of six Yemeni-American for providing material support to Al-Qaeda. Over his career, Hochul became one of the most highly-decorated federal prosecutors in the history of the Department of Justice, receiving over four dozen honors and awards for his work.