Remembering Alan Fleishman

Hon. Alan Fleishman, a lion of Brooklyn politics, passed away during the early morning hours of August 27th.  

A longtime figure in Brooklyn politics, Alan became Kings County's first openly gay District Leader (52nd Assembly District) in 2002.  He was president of the Lambda Independent Democrats of Brooklyn (LID) from 1988-1990, serving as the club's leader during the height of the A.I.D.S. epidemic.  At the time when many Brooklyn elected officials remained opposed to LGBT rights, his steadfast leadership drove LID's mission to elect allies to office. His legendary work shows today, as very few Brooklyn elected officials remain opposed to LGBT rights.  He was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1996 and 2000.

Alan remained an active voice in local politics until the end - delighting in sharing his personal, highly informed commentary on stories shaping national and local politics on social media, via email and long phone calls and visits with close, long-time political friends.  

"I have known Alan for many years" said Scott Klein, also a former LID president.  "He was an important part of achieving many of the rights LGBTQ have today. We wouldn't be where we are without him."  

"Full of humor and political acumen, Alan had one of the best political minds in New York" said Allen Roskoff, President of the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club . "Alan was always proudly gay and cared a great deal about our community. Alan was highly respected as a strategist and effective leader. Many candidates and elected official depended on Alan’s advice and support on a daily basis."  Alan served as a founding member of the Board of Governors of the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club since 2014

State Assembly Member JoAnne Simon, who served with Alan as district leader, said “I am deeply saddened by Alan Fleishman’s passing. Alan was more than my co-leader for 4 years. He was a friend, mentor, goader, a shaper, a gadfly, a political brain trust.  He was incredibly brave and fearless in his support for the candidates and the issues he believed in. Alan and I were always in each other’s corners. I loved him and I will miss him very much. Horace Mann once said that we should “be ashamed to die until we have won some victory for humanity.” If victories for humanity is the measure of a life well-lived, Alan Fleishman lived exceedingly well.

Elizabeth Rose Daly, who also served with Alan as co-district leader, said "Alan wasn't shy about expressing his opinion.  In very biting terms. But having Alan as my co-District Leader meant that I had a real partner in reform. Alan was always pushing County to do better and to be more open.  I will always remember the twinkle in his eye when he would gear up to challenge the party, especially on the matter of judicial selection. While I never knew what he was going to say, I was always glad when he took on County. I will miss his wit, his warmth and his support."

”Today, I lost a mentor and friend” said Jared B. Arader, current LID President. “Alan embodied the spirit of the LGBTQ political movement. He won’t be forgotten.”

Alan was a mentor and friend to many long-time and up-and-coming politicos alike.  LID and the Kings County political reform movement would not be where they are today with Alan.  He will be missed, and may his memory be for a blessing.