Ross Levi Lands At ESDC
Ross Levi, the prominent LGBT advocate and lobbyist who helped marshal the same-sex marriage law through the Legislature in 2011, is joining the Empire State Development Corporation.
Levi’s official title is vice president of ESDC’s Business Marketing Division. He will be in charge of developing niche tourism initiatives, cross-promotional projects, promoting ESD services to women and minority-own business enterprises and increase the agency’s presence at trade events, among other duties.
“Mr. Levi is a tremendous addition to our business marketing team with his many years of leadership experience in the areas of policymaking and communications work,” said Empire State Development President, CEO & Commissioner Kenneth Adams. “His role is integral to further expanding the state’s marketing efforts and promoting New York as the premier place to live, work, and visit. With his focus on specialized tourism promotion, we will continue to advance our goals of a diverse and comprehensive approach to driving private sector job growth and economic opportunity throughout New York.”
Levi, as the executive director of the Empire State Pride Agenda, was among a number of LGBT-rights groups and other organizations that formed New Yorkers United For Marriage, an umbrella group that was put together at Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s urging to create a united front on the same-sex marriage issue.
The effort, which included an extensive media and lobbying campaign, obviously worked after four Senate Republicans joined with Democrats to vote in favor of the measure.
But after the marriage law passed, Levi left ESPA unceremoniously, with the group’s board announcing he was no longer its executive director. No official explanation was given by ESPA, but The Advocate reported at the time there was dissatisfaction with the post-marriage law agenda.
Still, Levi is a familiar face in both Albany and New York City and his having worked as both a lobbyist on a contentious issue in addition to working as a legislative staffer made him a well-known name in state government circles.
“I’m excited to take on this new role with Empire State Development, working to promote the great state of New York under the tremendous leadership of Governor Cuomo,” Levi said. “Whether by making sure businesses are aware of the support and incentive programs offered by New York State, or encouraging groups like history aficionados, roller coaster enthusiasts or LGBT travelers to experience all that our state has to offer, I’m honored to be a part of the ongoing efforts to attract new investment, grow New York business and showcase the Empire State to an increasingly wide and diverse audience.”
His salary was not immediately available.
|Print article||This entry was posted by Nick Reisman on August 23, 2012 at 3:43 pm, and is filed under Albany. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.|