ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Former New York Gov. David Paterson was celebrated Friday in a ceremony to rename an historic Albany building in his honor.

The building is close to the state Capitol and is home to the War Room Tavern. The 55th governor took office 15 years ago on March 17 to succeed Eliot Spitzer. He lead New York through the 2008 economic recession.

The former governor said he was excited to return to the Capital Region for the dedication ceremony.

“It’s amazing to come back here now to look back at all the things that happened in my life; how they led me to this,” he said.

When Gov. Paterson took office, he became the first Black and first legally blind governor in New York’s history.