Albany, N.Y. - The former chief adviser to Republican Gov. George Pataki is running for New York attorney general against Democratic incumbent Eric Schneiderman.

John Cahill, also former state conservation commissioner, tells a gathering in Yonkers, his hometown, that he intends to be an advocate for all New Yorkers as both the public's prosecutor and defender.

The 55-year-old Cahill is emphasizing access to a good school as a civil rights issue and says with the right oversight New York's natural gas can be tapped to boost the economy while protecting the environment. 

The AG's office has a staff of more than 600 lawyers.

Pataki was governor from 1995 to 2006. 

Cahill and Pataki later founded an environmental and energy consulting firm. 

Both are with the Chadbourne & Parke law firm in Manhattan.