Marc Solomon, the Executive Director of MassEquality has accepted a position as Marriage Director at Equality California. Solomon headed the organization when it went from a small statewide organization with a budget of less than a half-million dollars to its current budget of over 3 million dollars.
Geoff Kors made the announcement at a private gathering of Equality California donors on Saturday in Los Angeles at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel attended by MadProfessah and several current EQCA board members like Doug Spearman, EQCA Board President Cary Davidson, Betsy Butler along with Assemblymembers Bonnie Lowenthal (55th AD) and Mike Feuer (42nd AD). Bay Windows is reporting the scoop on its website in an article written by Laura Kritsky:
Solomon, however, brings to his new job significant experience running a grassroots campaign, given that the mobilization of thousands of same-sex couples and their families to political activism — from lobbying to volunteering on political campaigns — is largely seen as the key to MassEquality’s success in winning the marriage battle here in Massachusetts. Solomon’s tenure as the leader of MassEquality began in 2006, after the departure of Campaign Director Marty Rouse. Solomon had previously served as the organization’s political director. In addition to leading the organization through its most crucial battle — the defeat of an anti-gay marriage amendment sponsored by the Massachusetts Family Institute in June 2007– he has also steered the organization to success in its new iteration as a multi-issue LGBT political organization. Most notably, Solomon and MassEquality led the effort on the repeal of the 1913 law that prevented non-resident same-sex couples from marrying in Massachusetts. Gov. Deval Patrick signed the repeal bill into law last July in a public ceremony. The organization also played a leading role in the passage of the MassHealth Equality bill, which enables same-sex spouses in Massachusetts to access MassHealth benefits, and was pivotal in securing increased state funding for a host of LGBT and HIV/AIDS programming in last year’s budget. Solomon’s tenure also saw the launch of the "6×12" strategy, a partnership with Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD) to win marriage equality in every New England state by 2012. As the face of the marriage movement in Massachusetts, Solomon has become a respected, connected leader on the state’s political scene whose ability to form personal relationships with lawmakers and political movers and shakers has also aided MassEquality’s political success. On May 13, he will be honored for his work on marriage with the Massachusetts Democratic Party’s 2009 Franklin D. Roosevelt Award.
Hopefully, Marc Solomon can do for California what he did in Massachusetts: build a grassroots movement that could produce majority popular support for marriage equality. Good luck to him!