Viola graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1977 and achieved the rank of major in the United States Army Reserves. In 1983, he graduated from New York Law School with a juris doctor degree.
Viola started his career in the financial services industry on the floor of the New York Mercantile Exchange and became a Member of the Exchange Board (1987-90), Vice Chairman (1993-1996) and Chairman (2001-2004).
- National Children’s Educational Reform Foundation - Co-founder and chairman.
- West Point Fund - Committee member.
- Combating Terrorism Center - Founding donor.
- Viola Foundation, Inc - Trustee.