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The FPWA Personally Speaking Series is a speaker series featuring prominent leaders who help shape the nonprofit, philanthropic, civic and business sectors in New York City and beyond.
The next installment of the FPWA Personally Speaking series will be held on Wednesday, September 28th from 6 pm to 8 pm at FPWA Office and Conference Center and will focus on emerging social justice leaders.
Brian Silva serves as both the Executive Director of Marriage Equality USA (MEUSA), and the Director of Grassroots Engagement and the National Equality Action Team for Freedom for All Americans (FFAA).
With over 40,000 members and volunteer leaders in all 50 states, MEUSA is the nation’s oldest and largest grassroots organization of its kind engaged in education, organizing, advocacy and coalition building to achieve civil marriage equality LGBTQ families and their children. FFAA is the national campaign to pass comprehensive non discrimination laws for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) Americans in all 50 states and at the federal level.
Under Brian’s leadership, MEUSA played a key role in the national passage of marriage equality. MEUSA expanded its grassroots education and advocacy work into communities across the United States and helped lead 12 field campaigns that brought marriage equality to nine additional states via the nationally recognized National Equality Action Team (NEAT) coalition. In addition, MEUSA co-led the United for Marriage Coalition events in Washington D.C. and around the country for the Supreme Court hearings and Decision Day in both 2013 and 2015.
Prior to joining MEUSA, Brian served in a variety of leadership positions with Marriage Equality New York (MENY), including as Executive Director, where he co-led the successful New Yorkers United for Marriage campaign to win marriage in 2011.
At FFAA, Brian is now overseeing the transition of NEAT and other initiatives to bring volunteer, grassroots participation into the national campaign for LGBTQ non discrimination.
In addition to being published in numerous venues, Brian has spoken nationally and internationally and received multiple awards for his work for LGBTQ equality and other issues. Prior to moving to New York, Brian worked as a high school teacher and technology coordinator in Southern California, as well as an emergency manager in New York City. He holds a Bachelors degree in Government from the University of Redlands and a Masters in Public Administration from Metropolitan College of New York.
The evening will be moderated by award-winning New York Times Journalist Nikita Stewart.
At The New York Times, Nikita covers social services with a focus on New York City Hall. Ms. Stewart has spent much of her career focused on local politics as a reporter previously at The Washington Post and The Star-Ledger in New Jersey. She has won several awards from state journalism associations and Investigative Reporters & Editors and was a Livingston Award finalist for a feature story on Cory Booker when he was an up-and-coming politician. She lives in Manhattan.