Gary Rotzler

Why Today's Vote Matters
January 19, 2011

Nearly a year ago, after President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law, I recalled the story of Gary Rotzler and what happened to him in the early 1990s. He had a college degree and a life pulled straight out of a Norman Rockwell painting: He had married his high school sweetheart and, together with their three young children, they were living in a tiny village at the foot of the Catskill Mountains. Then he lost his job, with its health benefits, and went uninsured for two years while getting by with a series of part-time, temporary jobs.

Finishing 'The Treatment'
April 11, 2010

A little less than ten years ago, inside a dark hotel restaurant in Utica, New York, Gary Rotzler told me the story of wife Betsy. They had been high school sweethearts and, by the early 1990s, had settled into their version of the American dream: Three young children and a home in Gilbertsville, a village of around 400 people nestled into the foothills of the Catskill mountains. When Gary lost his job at a defense contractor, he lost his health insurance. After piecing together part-time construction work, he got his old job back—but as an independent contractor without benefits.