If 2014 was the year of progressive change in New York City – with a liberal mayor and City Council coming to power after 12 years of a moderate technocratic administration – 2015 could be characterized as a regression to the mean. 

The honeymoon is firmly over for Mayor Bill de Blasio, who saw much of the public enthusiasm for his political agenda wane in his second year. Meanwhile, the promise of an activist City Council has begun to fade as Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and nearly half of the council approach lame duck status.

In fact, the 2017 election year played a role in the overall churn of this year’s list. Rumored mayoral challengers like Rep. Hakeem Jeffries made their Power 100 debut partly as a result of the constant intrigue around whether they will run. And several council members emerged on the list as possible successors to Mark-Viverito, a result of behind-the-scenes maneuvering that has already begun. Apparently it’s never too early to start campaigning.

There was also a reshuffling of the city’s lobbying, business, real estate and labor interests, now that a clearer picture has emerged of which organizations and individuals have access and clout in City Hall. And as de Blasio’s inner circle of advisers has winnowed to a select few, we tried to accurately reflect who the mayor listens to when shaping his policies.

This list will undoubtedly be met with some criticism, as is the case every year, but our rankings 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 we believe accurately reflects the current political landscape in New York City – one that will hopefully ignite a vigorous debate.

New York City Council Majority Leader


Jimmy Van Bramer

Last Year's Rank: 59

Change: -20

President, Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union


Stuart Appelbaum

Last Year's Rank: 89

Change: +11

Archbishop of New York


Timothy Dolan

Last Year's Rank: 88

Change: +11

Chancellor, CUNY


James Milliken

Last Year's Rank: 87

Change: +11

New York City Councilwoman


Julissa Ferreras-Copeland

Last Year's Rank: 67

Change: -8



Nydia Velazquez

Last Year's Rank: 73

Change: -1

President, New York City Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association


Norman Seabrook

Last Year's Rank: n/a

Change: n/a

State Director, Working Families Party


Bill Lipton

Last Year's Rank: n/a

Change: n/a

Counsel to the Governor


Alphonso David

Last Year's Rank: n/a

Change: n/a

Director, New York City Department of City Planning, Chairman, New York City Planning Commission


Carl Weisbrod

Last Year's Rank: 82

Change: +12

CEO, Cablevision; Executive Chairman, Madison Square Garden Company


James Dolan

Last Year's Rank: n/a

Change: n/a

Manhattan District Attorney


Cy Vance

Last Year's Rank: 76

Change: +8

Executive Director, District Council 37


Henry Garrido

Last Year's Rank: 98

Change: +31

President and CEO, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce


Carlo Scissura

Last Year's Rank: 79

Change: +13

Staten Island Borough President


James Oddo

Last Year's Rank: 77

Change: +12

New York City Councilman


David Greenfield

Last Year's Rank: 69

Change: +5

New York State Assemblyman


Marcos Crespo

Last Year's Rank: n/a

Change: n/a



Hakeem Jeffries

Last Year's Rank: n/a

Change: n/a

Partner, Bolton-St. Johns


Emily Giske

Last Year's Rank: 64

Change: +3

Manhattan Borough President


Gale Brewer

Last Year's Rank: 68

Change: +8

Partner, Mercury Public Affairs


Michael McKeon

Last Year's Rank: 52

Change: -7