Irving (Blackie) Horowitz was born in Brooklyn around 1906.
He was a very sharp and intelligent young man who gravitated to the labor movement early on in his underworld career. But he was also astute enough to understand the importance of making friends in high places, both in the underworld and the upperworld.
This understanding of how things worked led him to forge lifelong ties to both the most powerful mafia network in New York, the Vito Genovese crime family, and to strengthen his connections and alliances with important Brooklyn political clubs and, by extension, powerful local politicians.
By the early 1950s, Irving Horowitz, or “Blackie” as he liked his underworld friends to call him, had become one of the most influential labor union leaders in all of Brooklyn and, for that matter, in all of New York City.