Vote for Equality: Our 2019 Election Endorsements

This page was last updated October 15, 2019.

On Tuesday, November 5, the entire State Assembly will be up for election, along with numerous county and municipal offices. With our community under attack and an ambitious legislative agenda for 2020, this year’s election will be extremely consequential for LGBTQ New Jerseyans.

Today, we’re sharing with you our endorsements for the 2019 election. We’ve additionally provided a list of openly LGBTQ candidates running for office in New Jersey.

Each of the endorsed candidates has a demonstrated record of working with and supporting issues of importance to the LGBTQ community, and they have offered commitments to support our 2020 legislative agenda.

Next year, in collaboration with partners, we plan to ban the gay and trans “panic defense,” reform New Jersey’s archaic HIV criminalization laws, secure statewide funding for homeless LGBTQ youth, and pass a bill of rights for LGBTQ older adults. Ensuring that we pass each of these bills means we need a pro-equality majority in Trenton.

Standing up for equality is always right, and because of their proven record and commitment to New Jersey’s LGBTQ community, all of these candidates have decisively earned Garden State Equality Action Fund’s endorsement.

From now through election day, we will be educating voters about what’s at stake in this election—and who’s on their side. We are proud to support this slate of candidates, and we look forward to building a more equal New Jersey with them in office.

Garden State Equality Action Fund 501(c)4
2019 Endorsements

* Incumbent

State Senate:

LD 1 — Bob Andrzejczak (D)*

General Assembly:

LD 1 — Bruce Land (D)*
LD 2 — John Armato (D)* Vincent Mazzeo (D)*
LD 3 — John Burzichelli (D)* Adam Taliaferro (D)*
LD 4 — Gabriela Mosquera (D)* Paul Moriarty (D)*
LD 5 — Bill Spearman (D)* Bill Moen (D)
LD 6 — Lou Greenwald (D)* Pamela Lampitt (D)*
LD 7 — Herb Conaway (D)* Carol Murphy (D)*
LD 8 — Gina LaPlaca (D) Mark Natale (D)
LD 9 — Wayne Lewis (D)
LD 10 — Eileen Della Volle (D) Erin Wheeler (D)
LD 11 — Joann Downey (D)* Eric Houghtaling (D)*
LD 12 — Malini Guha (D)
LD 13 — Serena DiMaso (R)* Allison Friedman (D)

While we are concerned that she abstained from voting on the LGBTQ-inclusive curriculum legislation, Assemblywoman DiMaso has been supportive of some of the most important LGBTQ related bills that have passed through the Assembly during her time.

LD 14 — Dan Benson (D)* Wayne DeAngelo (D)*
LD 15 — Jennifer Williams (R) Verlina Reynolds-Jackson (D)* Anthony Verrelli (D)*
LD 16 — Andrew Zwicker (D)* Roy Freiman (D)*
LD 17 — Joe Danielsen (D)*
LD 18 — Nancy Pinkin (D)* Bob Karabinchak (D)*
LD 19 — Craig Coughlin (D)* Yvonne Lopez (D)*
LD 20 — Jamel Holley (D)* Annette Quijano (D)*
LD 21 — Stacey Gunderman (D) Lisa Madelblatt (D)
LD 22 — Jim Kennedy (D)* Linda Carter (D)*
LD 23 — No Endorsement
LD 24 — Deana Lykins (D)
LD 25 — Lisa Bhimani (D) Darcy Draeger (D)
LD 26 — Christine Clarke (D) Laura Fortgang (D)
LD 27 — John McKeon (D)* Mila Jasey (D)*
LD 28 — Ralph Caputo (D)* Cleopatra Tucker (D)*
LD 29 — Eliana Pintor Marin (D)* Shanique Speight (D)*
LD 30 — No Endorsement
LD 31 — Nick Chiaravalloti (D)* Angela McKnight (D)*
LD 32 — Angelica Jiminez (D)* Pedro Mejia (D)*
LD 33 — Raj Mukherji (D)* Annette Chaparro (D)*
LD 34 — Tom Giblin (D)* Britnee Timberlake (D)*
LD 35 — Benjie Wimberly (D)* Shavonda Sumter (D)*
LD 36 — Clinton Calabrese (D)*
LD 37 — Gordon Johnson (D)* Valerie Huttle (D)*
LD 38 — Lisa Swain (D)* Chris Tully (D)*
LD 39 — Holly Schepisi (R)*, Gerald Falotico (D), John Birkner Jr. (D)

We wished she had not abstained on the LGBTQ-inclusive curriculum legislation, however, Assemblywoman Schepisi has been an advocate on LGBTQ issues, including sponsoring the “Babs Siperstein Law” and we support her reelection to the Assembly.

LD 40 — Kevin Rooney (R)*

Local Endorsements:

Bette Jane Kowalski (D)* for Union County Freeholder
Cara Parmigiani (D) for Morris County Freeholder
Carol Rizzo (D)* for Neptune Mayor
Christopher Hillmann (D)* for Hasbrouck Heights Mayor
David T. Wright (D) for Ocean County Freeholder
Jean A. Czarkowski (D) for Ocean County Freeholder
Jonathan Petro (D) for Toms River Mayor
Meghan Huryk (D) for Neptune City Council
Michael DeFusco (D)* for Hoboken Council
Melonie Marano (D) for Somerset County Freeholder
Michael Penna (D) for Monmouth County Freeholder
Michael Thompson for Morris County Surrogate
Michael Warren (D) for Rochelle Park Council
Moira Nelson (D) for Monmouth County Freeholder
Nick Polito (D) for Atlantic County Freeholder
Pamela Renee (D)* for Neptune City Mayor
Rebecca Williams (D)* for Union County Freeholder
Sergio Granados (D)* for Union County Freeholder
Tom Arnone (R)* for Monmouth County Freeholder

LGBTQ Candidates:

Garden State Equality Action Fund also believes that it has a responsibility to share with our members a list of LGBTQ self-disclosed candidates, whether or not they received an endorsement. We encourage our members to support all LGBTQ candidates who support our community:

Alyssa Dawson for Bergen County Freeholder
Brett Cannon for Matawan Council
Cara Parmigiani for Morris County Freeholder:
Carol Rizzo for Neptune Mayor
Caryl “Chris” Shoffner for South Bound Brook Mayor
Christine Dansereau for Mayor of Roselle
Christopher Hillmann for Hasbrouck Heights Mayor
Eileen Della Volle for Assembly in LD10
Gerald Lyons for Jersey City School Board
Jennifer Williams for Assembly LD15
Jonathan Petro for Toms River Mayor
Meghan Huryk for Neptune City Council
Michael Defusco for Hoboken Council
Michael Penna for Monmouth County Freeholder
Michael Warren for Rochelle Park Council
Migdalia Pagan Milano for Hoboken Council
Moira Nelson for Monmouth County Freeholder
Pamela Renee for Neptune City Mayor
Patrick Curreri for Vernon Council
Rebecca Williams for Union County Freeholder
Rich Rockwell for Bloomfield Council
T.C. McCourt for Dover Alderman
Wartyna “Nina” Davis for Bloomfield Council