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Ellner Withdraws Candidacy As Head Of Empire State Pride Agenda

6a00d8341c730253ef013480d729a0970c Brian Ellner withdrew his name as a candidate for executive director of ESPA, a day before he was set to go before the gay rights group's board for approval, amid criticism from LGBT advocates. Ellner was expected to be easily approved for the job.

The New York Times reports:

"Several influential gay advocates objected to Mr. Ellner’s decision to take a job at the Board of Education under Mr. Bloomberg, whom they have never accepted as fully committed to their cause. While the mayor supports same-sex marriage, some advocates have not forgiven him for appealing a 2005 court decision that supported same-sex marriage and for backing Senate Republicans opposed to the unions."

"The advocates cited what they said was Mr. Ellner’s criticism of the mayor in 2005, when Mr. Ellner ran for Manhattan borough president."

“Brian Ellner could not be trusted with the rights of L.G.B.T. people, when he has a history of taking care of Brian Ellner and securing employment at the expense of ideals,” said Allen Roskoff, an advocate and the president of the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club, an influential group in gay politics. The club had threatened to cut ties with the Empire State Pride Agenda if it appointed Mr. Ellner."

Ellner's response to his withdrawal: “It didn’t work out, and I wish them the best.”


Brian Ellner to be Named Head of Empire State Pride Agenda

Brian Ellner will be named executive director of New York gay rights group Empire State Pride Agenda, City Room reports:

Ellner "Brian Ellner, who serves as Mr. Klein’s senior counselor for community affairs, is expected to be approved next week by the Pride Agenda’s board of directors, according to someone with direct knowledge of the board’s plans who was not authorized to discuss it publicly. Mr. Ellner would replace Alan Van Capelle, who left the organization in January to take a position with New York City Comptroller John C. Liu. Mr. Ellner would assume leadership of the organization at a time when it is trying to regroup after suffering the most significant setback of its 20-year history. A Harvard and Dartmouth graduate who ran unsuccessfully for Manhattan borough president in 2005, Mr. Ellner would help coordinate the next effort to pass legislation to legalize same-sex marriage in Albany."

Ellner is currently senior counselor for community affairs for Schools Chancellor Joel Klein.


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