Staff Spotlight: Sarah Moeller, Development Associate

Freedom to Marry has a dedicated and diverse staff working each day to secure the freedom to marry nationwide, and we want to help you get to know each of us a little bit better. This week, we hear from Sarah Moeller, Freedom to Marry's Development Associate. Sarah works in our New York office, where she works with Development Director Jeffrey Correa to fund the efforts of Freedom to Marry. Previously, she has worked as Community Outreach Director at New York Public Interest Research Group, where she coordinated grassroots public education campaigns on climate change across downstate New York. She lives on Long Island with her boyfriend. 

1) Where are you from, and what brought you to New York City?
I was born in Missouri, and lived in southern California and Pennsylvania before I was old enough to remember. I grew up on Long Island, went to Towson University in Baltimore, and came back to New York after graduating. I currently live with my boyfriend in Massapequa, home of the Baldwin brothers and Jerry Seinfeld.

2) Tell us about some of your environmental advocacy work. How did you get involved, and what did you learn from those experiences?
Before coming to Freedom to Marry I worked for the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG), which works on several issues, including environmental justice. I alternated between school years on college campuses and summers running a door-to-door fundraising canvass, the latter focusing solely on a campaign for climate change legislation in New York State. As a typically progressive member of my generation, I found the work easy to get behind. The best part was definitely working with young people who were super energetic and passionate, which gives me a lot of confidence in the future.

3) What do you like to do in your free time?
I am an avid reader, especially during my 2 hours worth of Long Island Rail Road every day. I love anything F. Scott Fitzgerald, some young adult and science fiction, political histories and social commentary, memoirs, and strong female leads. In the winter time I like museums, movies, and restaurants. In the summer I love the beach and visiting vineyards and breweries. All of which I enjoy even more with amazing friends and family.

4) What has been your favorite "freedom to marry" moment - a time in the movement that has particularly resonated with you?
We've had several major victories recently, which were all amazing, but I also like to revel in the mainstream cultural activity. For example, what has recently happened at JC Penny; first they announce Ellen DeGeneres as a spokesperson, then One Million Moms threatens mass boycotts, then JCP releases ads featuring real gay and lesbian couples with their families. I love the confidence that so many American retailers now have in supporting the love and commitment of all couples.

5) Why does the freedom to marry matter to you?
In my time here, I've heard so many wonderful stories about same-sex couples, their weddings, and how their relationships work - and the diversity of those experiences is enlightening. In addition to me very simple but strong belief in equality and fairness, I think gay and lesbian couples, and the families those couples head, can be great examples for straight couples. From how to have a less rigidly traditional wedding, to equitably splitting house work, I think a lot can be learned.


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