Proven Leader Takes National Campaign to Next Level
(NEW YORK, NY, March 1, 2011)
– Marc Solomon
, who led the historic campaign to defend the freedom to marry in Massachusetts and has worked with Freedom to Marry as senior consultant since November, is joining Freedom to Marry’s staff as National Campaign Director, effective immediately.
"This is a moment of great opportunity for the movement to win the freedom to marry. The Obama Administration has said it will no longer defend marriage discrimination in court, we have a nationwide majority for marriage that we will continue to grow, the freedom to marry is within reach in several states in 2011, and crucial lawsuits add urgency to our work. Now is the time to expand our central campaign strength, with Freedom to Marry’s Roadmap to Victory as the pathway forward and personal stories making the case for why marriage matters as our fuel,” said Freedom to Marry founder and President Evan Wolfson. “With his deep campaign experience and unparalleled track record in marriage battles around the country, Marc Solomon is the best person bar none to manage the all-hands-on-deck Freedom to Marry national campaign to get the job done.”
As Executive Director of MassEquality, Solomon led the campaign to defeat two constitutional amendments in the first freedom to marry state in the nation, beating back attacks by the Catholic Church, President George W. Bush, Gov. Mitt Romney, and the right-wing anti-gay industry. Following the victory in Massachusetts, Solomon consulted with state-wide equality organizations in Connecticut and Vermont, as well as Freedom to Marry, as part of the nationwide effort to end marriage discrimination. During his tenure as Marriage Director of Equality California following Proposition 8 , Solomon led the largest state effort in movement history to make the case for marriage through face-to-face conversations, with a special focus on building support in communities of color, helping grow public support for the freedom to marry in California from 44 percent to 50 percent.
"I am thrilled to join Freedom to Marry and help grow the urgently needed campaign to win marriage nationwide,” said Solomon. “Freedom to Marry’s vision has always been to move forward on personal, state, and federal fronts, with focus and collaboration, with multiple methodologies and partners in the work, with a relentless focus on victory. Freedom to Marry has a tremendous team and visionary plan, and I am excited to bring what I’ve learned over the past decade to Freedom to Marry and enlist more people am across the country in this cause and campaign.”
As National Campaign Director, Solomon will take on responsibility for integrating all parts of the organization’s work in addition to continuing his role overseeing the campaign on several signature projects, ranging from enlisting new and compelling public figures as Voices for Equality to supporting key states in the final push to win marriage. He will also help guide the organization’s new federal push and support Freedom to Marry’s groundbreaking new Why Marriage Matters campaign, , which aims at persuading the next slice of reachable Americans.
“In Massachusetts, we believe that every person ought to be able to marry whomever they love, and thanks to the efforts of people like Marc that is now a reality,” said Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. “I congratulate Marc on his new role, and know that he will continue to be an effective advocate for advancing marriage equality efforts across the nation.”
Solomon has extensive background in advocacy, public policy, and media, having served as a Senate policy adviser in Washington, D.C. and researcher for Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward. In May 2009, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick presented Marc with the Massachusetts Democratic Party’s prestigious Franklin Delano Roosevelt Award, given each year to someone who espouses FDR’s ideals “with respect to democracy, justice, individual freedoms, and citizenship.”
Solomon graduated Magna Cum Laude with Honors in Political Science and Economics from Yale University and holds a Master’s in Public Administration from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. In 1999, the Rockefeller Foundation named Solomon as one of 24 of America’s next generation leaders and invited him to participate in its prestigious two-year Next Generation Leadership fellowship program.
Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage nationwide. We are pursuing our Roadmap to Victory by working to win the freedom to marry in more states, grow the national majority for marriage, and end federal marriage discrimination. We partner with individuals and organizations across the country to end the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage and the protections, responsibilities, and commitment that marriage brings.