2021 Pride Power 100

June 23, 2021  
5:00PM - 6:00PM
Celebrating the LGBTQIA+ Community in NY!
Event Description

In the past year, two New Yorkers, Ritchie Torres and Mondaire Jones, became the first gay Black members of Congress. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the Civil Rights Acts’ workplace protections extend to gay and transgender workers. In the White House, President Biden has passed several executive orders to protect the LGBTQIA+ community. And yet, there is still much work to be done, nationally and here in New York. On the front lines of these battles are many remarkable individuals who are standing up for their rights.

For the fifth year, we are recognizing some of those individuals this June. The 2021 Pride Power 100 list, debuting on June 21st, will profile and rank the most influential figures in the LGBTQIA+ community in New York. Join us for a virtual celebration on Wednesday, June 23rd to acknowledge these remarkable individuals! 

Brad Hoylman
New York State Senator, District 27
State Senator Brad Hoylman, the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, represents New York’s 27th State Senate District which covers much of the heart of Manhattan including the neighborhoods of Greenwich Village, Chelsea, Hell's Kitchen, Columbus Circle, Times Square, the Upper West Side, the East Village, Midtown East, and the Lower East Side. Brad champions a wide range of issues, such as housing, transportation, public education, LGBTQ rights, environment and seniors. He has passed over sixty bills in the Senate, including the Child Victims Act, which enabled adult survivors of child sexual abuse to revive legal claims against their abusers; the TRUST Act, which permitted Congress to review the state taxes of elected officials like Donald Trump; GENDA, which extended human rights protections to transgender New Yorkers; and banning the practice of sexual orientation change efforts, or so-called “conversion therapy.” Brad was the lead sponsor of legislation to legalize gestational surrogacy for LGBTQ people and individuals struggling with infertility. He led the fight in the State Senate to ban flavored e-cigarettes in New York State and pass legislation that helped eliminate the toxic chemical PFAS from our drinking water. Brad has led initiatives to improve traffic safety by requiring the use of backseat seatbelts in taxis and reducing speed limits along the West Side Highway. Brad is a longtime grassroots activist, serving previously as a Democratic District Leader and three-term chair of Manhattan Community Board 2. He is the past president of the Gay and Lesbian Independent Democrats and a former board member of Tenants & Neighbors and Citizen Action. Brad has deep roots in Manhattan but was raised in rural West Virginia, where he attended public schools through college. Brad graduated from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes scholar, and Harvard Law School. Before being elected to the Senate, he practiced law and was general counsel of the Partnership for New York City, the city’s leading business and civic organization. Brad and his husband David Sigal, a filmmaker, are the parents of two young daughters, Silvia and Lucy. The family are members of Congregation Beit Simchat Torah, the LGBTQ synagogue.
Chief of Staff to Bill de Blasio Emma Wolfe
Emma Maguire Wolfe
Chief of Staff and Deputy Mayor for Administration, New York City Hall
As Deputy Mayor for Administration and Chief of Staff, Emma advises and assists the Mayor regarding all planning and external affairs, oversees the day-to-day operations of the Mayor's executive office and supervises and coordinates the operations of a portfolio of mayoral agencies. Previously, Emma served as the Director of Intergovernmental Affairs, where she worked with officials ranging from the City Council to Congress to implement progressive policies that require legislative and executive support.  Prior to her time at City Hall, Emma worked as the Deputy Campaign Manager and Political Director for Bill de Blasio’s 2013 mayoral campaign. From 2010 to 2012, Emma was the Chief of Staff for the Office of the Public Advocate and reorganized the office into an effective agency watchdog with an emphasis on community organizing. She has worked as an organizing and field director for the New York State Senate, Working Families Party, and 1199 SEIU. Emma holds a bachelor’s degree in urban studies from Barnard College.
Melissa Sklarz
Melissa Sklarz
Senior Government Relations Strategist, SAGE
Melissa Sklarz is the Senior Government Relations strategist for SAGE. She has an extensive background in LGBT communities and Democratic Party politics. She is the former Board Co-Chair of the Empire State Pride Agenda and the National Stonewall Democrats. She is the former President of Stonewall Democrats of New York City and served on Community Board No. 2 in Manhattan for six years. She was a former Hillary Clinton delegate from New York at the Democratic National Convention in 2016 and was a voting member of the Electoral College that year. In 2018, Melissa ran for New York State Assembly for the 30th District in Queens. She had a speaking role in the Academy Award–nominated film Transamerica.
Camarda Photo
Alex Camarda
Director of Government Affairs, Charter Communications
Alex Camarda is a Director of Government Affairs for Charter Communications (“Spectrum”). He works on government relations issues and legislative matters for the company for New York City, New Jersey and states in the Northeast. He previously oversaw public policy and advocacy for 8 years at the good government organizations Reinvent Albany and Citizens Union, and worked in the New York State Senate for 3 years. Camarda also worked at the New York City Department of Education for 7 years as high school social studies teacher and director of new school development.

Welcome & Opening Remarks By Brian Ellner, BCW Global


Introductory Remarks By Alex Camarda, Director Government Affairs, Charter Communications


Keynote Remarks By Emma Wolfe, Chief of Staff and Deputy Mayor for Administration, New York City Hall


Keynote Remarks By New York State Senator Brad Hoylman


Keynote Remarks By Melissa Sklarz, Senior Government Relations Strategist, SAGE


Recognition of Pride Power 100 List


Closing Remarks

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