Hemmerdinger, a Democrat who headed the real estate development firms Hemmerdinger Corp. and ATCO Properties, described himself as an advocate for transparent government.
He and his wife, Elizabeth, recently hosted a fundraiser for the state Democratic Party that featured Silda Wall Spitzer, the governor's wife, with tickets ranging from $250 to $10,000.
MTA pick is 'independent thinker'
The Hemmerdingers' support of Spitzer is a point of contention with Albany Republicans. Republican State Chairman Joseph Mondello called for an investigation into whether the nomination is a pay-to-play deal.