Curtis Sliwa (born March 26, 1954 in Canarsie, Brooklyn, New York) was a McDonald's manager and community activist who founded the volunteer anti-crime organization called the Guardian Angels in 1979, in New York City. He later became a conservative radio talk show host, although his political views are less noticeable than his "gift of gab" rapid-fire speaking style.
Sliwa attended Brooklyn Prep, a Jesuit Catholic high school and graduated from Canarsie High School, a New York City public high school.
In the early 1990's, Sliwa was co-host with his then-wife Lisa Evers on WABC-AM in New York City.
On June 19, 1992 Sliwa was ambushed by two gunmen as he hailed a taxi in New York. Sliwa underwent surgery for internal injuries and leg wounds. John A. "Junior" Gotti, son of the late crime boss John Gotti and two members of the Gambino crime family were charged with conspiring to murder Sliwa. On September 20, 2005, the case against Gotti was declared a mistrial after the jury announced it was hopelessly deadlocked. A retrial on the same charges was declared a mistrial on March 10, 2006, again due to a deadlocked jury. Prosecutors stated their intention to try the case a third time.
Prosecutors allege that the hit was arranged in retaliation for comments about the elder Gotti that Sliwa made during his radio program. (A 2004 episode of Law & Order dramatized this incident, with Sliwa's equivalent - "Cristoff" - played by Jose Zuniga.)
After his attempted murder, his WABC program was cancelled. Through his friendship with Mayor Rudy Giuliani he was given a radio program on the then city owned and operated WNYC.
Sliwa is now the co-host, with Ron Kuby, of the popular "Curtis and Kuby in the Morning" program which is aired on weekdays from 5 A.M. to 10 A.M.on WABC. In 2005, its ratings exceeded that of the all-news station WCBS-AM. Sliwa and Kuby also co-hosted a television version of "Curtis & Kuby" on MSNBC in the afternoons for a time in 2002-2003.
Sliwa married for a third time and became a father in 2004.
Sliwa is known for his connection to the New York City local community and frequently participates in local events. He is the New York City Stickball Commissioner and was a former competitive eater who has often participated and hosted International Federation of Competitive Eating events.