There are lots of famous people with Albanian roots. This article will fill you in on the richest Albanians in New York.
Albanians are the most recent group of people from a country in Southeastern Europe, Albania. Kolë Kristofori (English: Nicholas Christopher) was the first documented Albanian to have emigrated to the US.
The Albanians immigrated to the United States in the early 20th century. The ethnic conflicts in the Balkan region made their immigration to the US soar. Of all the Albanian immigrants, up to two-thirds of their number live in New York. The cheap and abundant real estate propelled the Albanians to move to New York because they were opportuned to work as building supervisors.
The Italians were known to have historical links with the Albanians, and due to the large population of the Italians in New York, the Albanians were more encouraged to occupy New York. Some Albanians even sought refuge in Italy before moving to the US. They both have common ancestry and lots of cultural attributes.
New York City paid off for the Albanians as the building supervisors amongst them bought buildings, and those who worked in restaurants eventually owned their own pizza parlors. In later years, the Albanians started finding success in other areas.
Albanians started carving their own identity with increased social and economic status. With the increase in Albanian population in New York, the contributions of the Albanians will increase.
Richest Albanians In New York
1. William George “Borneo” Gregory
William George is a retired America Air Force lieutenant colonel. George was born into an Albanian America family. He graduated from Lockport High School before attending the United States Air Force Academy. George is an Eagle Scout.
George went ahead to Columbia University after attaining a degree in Engineering Sciences from the Air Force Academy. He got a master’s degree in engineering mechanics from Columbia University and another master’s degree in management from Troy University.
George is also a member of USAF Academy Association of Graduates.
2. Ariyan Arslani
Ariyan Arslani is a television presenter and rapper. He is addressed by the stage name, Action Bronson. Born in Flushing, Queens, New York City, to an American Jewish mother and Albanian Muslim father, Bronson was raised as a Muslim. Action Bronson hosts a variety of talk shows and travel programs.
Action Bronson has several released mixtapes like The Alchemist and Blue Chips, Rare Chandeliers, Saaab Stories, Party Supplies, Harry Fraud, and his major debut album, Mr. Wonderful.
Bronson attended Bayside High School before starting off his career as a rapper. He hosted an online cooking show of his own, Action In The Kitchen
3. Martin Shkreli
Martin Shkreli is a hedge fund manager. Martin is the co-founder and former CEO of Retrophin and Turing Pharmaceuticals, co-founder of MSMB Healthcare and MSMB Capital Management, and former CEO of Gödel Systems.
Martin is a convicted felon presently at the low-security Federal prison in Allenwood with an expected release date in 2023. He was charged on one count of conspiring to commit securities fraud and two counts of securities fraud in 2017.
Martin was born in the New York City Borough of Brooklyn to Albanian and Croatian immigrant parents. His parents worked in the US as janitors. He was raised in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn with his brother and two sisters.
4. Bleta Rexha
Bleta Rexha is a singer and songwriter known with the stage name, Bebe Rexha. Rexha was born to Flamur Rexha and Bukurije Rexha, her Albanian parents in New York City. Bleta, which meant “bee” in Albanian language was replaced with “Bebe”.
Rexha and her family moved to Staten Island when she was six years old. She has a brother named Florent.
Rexha attended Tottenville High School. She won the “Best Teen Songwriter” award when she submitted a song to be performed at the annual Grammy Day event.
5. Mike Dusi
Mike Dusi is an actor and producer. He was raised in Queens, New York by his Albanian parents. Mike uses Shokotan skills for his comedy and action films. He did not take acting seriously until he moved to Los Angeles.
Mike originally trained as an MCSE, but he dropped it when he realized it didn’t fit his lifestyle.
6. Sal F. Albanese
Sal Albanese is a politician in New York City. Although he served as a New York City Council Member, he ran for the office of Mayor of New York City, United States Congress, and New York State Assembly to no success.
Albanese came to New York City at the age of eight. He attended John Jay High School and Our Lady of Peace Grammar School. He got his B.A in Education from the City University of New York and a Master of Arts in Health from New York University. Albanese started his career as a teacher at John Jay High School. This he did for eleven years.
7. Joseph John DioGuardi
Joseph John DioGuardi is a certified Republican politician and public accountant. He is the president of Albanian American Civic League organization that he runs with his wife Shirley Cloves DioGuardi. And he was a former partner at Arthur Andersen & Co.
Joseph is the father of record producer and songwriter Kara DioGuardi.
Joseph graduated from Fordham University. Afterward, he worked at Arthur Andersen & Co., before he became a Certified Public Accountant.
8. Labinot Gashi
Labinot Gashi is a songwriter, singer, and rapper. He was born in Libya to Albanian parents. Before he settled in New York, he spent his childhood as a refugee in several European and African countries.
Labinot graduated from New Utrecht High School. Despite all the honors he earned when he was in school, Labinot dropped out of college to concentrate on music. He adopted the stage name The Kid Gashi which later changed to Gashi, and then G4Shi, and eventually changed back to Gashi again.
9. Enisa Nikaj
Enisa Nikaj is a songwriter, singer, and model. She began her career in 2015 with cover songs before she started releasing her own songs in 2016. Enisa is best known for her singles “Tears Hit The Ground”, “Love Cycle”, “Count My Blessings”, and “Burn This Bridge”.
Enisa attended The Parkside elementary school before she went to Edward R. Murrow High School College for her bachelor’s degree in business administration. Enisa started uploading songs on her Youtube channel.
10. Drita D’Avanzo
Drita D’Avanzo is a reality star and she grew up in Staten Island.
Drita makes appearances on television with notable celebrities. She is married to Lee D’Avanzo. Drita appears on Celebrity Ghost Stories and Watch What Happens Live. She was announced as a cast member on the Big Brother-style VH1 in 2017.
Albanians immigrated to the US because of poor economic conditions, many were losing money, families were struggling to survive with the ethnic war that broke out. As the number of Albanians living in the US increased with each passing year, so did the successful ones among them increase.
Although, the richest Albanians in New York have Albanian root, they could easily pass as Americans, or rather Albanian American. Singer Bebe Rexha is a talented and successful American pop singer with Albanian roots. Action Bronson born to Albanian parents is a popular American rapper in New York.