We knew that 2014 would be a year of change in New York City. Mayor Bill de Blasio took office as part of a progressive wave that also ushered in the most liberal City Council we have seen in decades. How those two entities would operate and how outside influences would impact the political wheeling and dealing in and around City Hall was uncertain.

Over the past year the picture has become clearer as we have talked with political insiders and followed the movements of city government in 2014.

In compiling the list, we came to several general conclusions. First, that overall the clout of the City Council is not what it has been in past years. The influx of new members and the close relationship with the mayor’s office has diminished the political power of the speaker and the members. That is reflected in our rankings.

Also, we have found that the influence of lobbyists, special interests and the media has grown. This was to be expected after 12 years under Michael Bloomberg, whose personal fortune often insulated him from these outside influences. We didn’t start to see that shift until we were well into 2014, so this year’s list comes with lots of changes.

Another factor on the rankings was the outcome of the 2014 elections. Republicans winning control of the U.S. Senate diminished the influence of Democratic members of Congress. State Senate Republicans taking outright control of the chamber also alters the landscape, because so much of the mayor’s progressive agenda is dependent on changing state law.

I have no doubt that this list will be met with criticism from some. It is every year. But decisions were not made lightly. We reached out to sources to get a sense of what they were seeing. We considered pitches from all corners of government. And we took all of the feedback we got with a grain of salt and a skeptical mind. In the end, we have come up with a list that accurately reflects the current political landscape in New York City and will hopefully ignite a vigorous debate.

President, The Parkside Group


Harry Giannoulis

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

President, The Black Institute


Bertha Lewis

Last Year's Rank: 42

Change: -57

Executive Director, DC37


Henry Garrido

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

Managing Director, Connelly McLaughlin & Woloz


Mike Woloz

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

President, Uniformed Firefighters Association


Steve Cassidy

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

Managing Director, McKenna, Long & Aldridge


Michael Klein

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

Senior Vice Chancellor, City University of New York


Jay Hershenson

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

Commissioner, Mayor's Office for International Affairs


Penny Abeywardena

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

New York Co-Chairman, Greenberg Traurig


Ed Wallace

Last Year's Rank: 94

Change: +2

Chief of Staff, City Council


Ramon Martinez

Last Year's Rank: 99

Change: +8

Staten Island District Attorney


Dan Donovan

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

President, RWDSU


Stuart Appelbaum

Last Year's Rank: 96

Change: +7

Cardinal and Archbishop of New York


Timothy Dolan

Last Year's Rank: 46

Change: -42

Chancellor, City University of New York


James Milliken

Last Year's Rank: 91

Change: +4

Chairman, Related Companies


Stephen M. Ross

Last Year's Rank: 70

Change: -16

CEO, Thor Equities


Joseph Sitt

Last Year's Rank: 84

Change: -1



Charles Rangel

Last Year's Rank: 81

Change: -3

Counsel to the Mayor


Maya Wiley

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

City Planning Commissioner


Carl Weisbrod

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

Executive Director, New York State Nurses Association


Jill Furillo

Last Year's Rank:

Change: NEW

President and CEO, Partnership for New York City


Kathryn Wylde

Last Year's Rank: 15

Change: -65