Jeffrey “Jeff” Nathanson was born on July 10, 1958, in Biddeford, Maine, to Toby Yetta Nathanson and Jon Allen Nathanson. His family owned a fast food drive-in called Toby’s Drive-In, near Thornton Academy, along with a food stand in Old Orchard Beach; his parents sold Toby’s in 1997. Jeff attended Thornton Academy, graduating in 1976, and continued his education at Williams College; he majored in biology with a minor in environmental studies, graduating in 1980. He worked on Harold Pachios’s congressional campaign. Through Jim Case, he was hired as a part-time elevator operator for Senators Mitchell and Byrd in Washington, DC; he was later hired to run the mail operation for Mitchell’s 1982 election and was promoted to legislative assistant. After the election, he traveled throughout Europe before attending both Boston University and the University of Maine Law School. Following law school he held a number of positions at Maine Savings Bank, Fleet, and TD Banknorth. At the time of this interview he was on the board for the Cromwell Center for Disabilities, president of the Cancer Community Center in Maine, and working with Special Olympics.
Interview includes discussion of: childhood and educational background; running elevators on Capitol Hill; Senator Mitchell’s mailroom during the 1982 election; serving as a legislative assistant until the spring of 1983; other staff in the office; and description of Mitchell personality and qualities.
This recording and transcription are © 2011 Bowdoin College and are presented for private study, scholarship, or research only. For all other uses, including publication, reproduction, and quotation beyond “fair use” (Title 17, United States Code) permission must be obtained in writing from the George J. Mitchell Dept. of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, 3000 College Station, Brunswick, Maine 04011-8421, USA.