NYPAN’s advisory committee is currently being formed, under the leadership of Phil Steck, NYS Assemblyman, and Jumaane Williams, NY City Councilman. The goal is to create a group of legislative and policy experts who can suggest ways for NYPAN to activate its members. With help from this committee, we hope to be as effective and efficient as possible at bringing progressive changes to New York.
Phil is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard College and a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania Law School. But, after law school, he didn’t join a big firm and seek out a large pay-day, he became an Assistant District Attorney to help keep our families safe.
When Phil left the District Attorney’s Office, he didn’t focus on the lucrative areas of private practice. He chose to focus on civil rights and employment law to make sure big business and special interests can’t trample the rights and dignity of those without a voice.
Phil Steck has always been a progressive Democrat. In 1999, he was the first Democrat ever elected from his County Legislative District. He was at that time the only Democratic elected official in the entire Town of Colonie. In 2007, under Phil’s leadership as Democratic Chair, the Democratic Party won control of the government of Colonie for the first time in Town history. Phil stepped down as Chair in 2008 but has remained an integral member of Colonie’s Democratic team.
Phil Steck served 3 and a half terms in the Albany County Legislature, winning between 62%- 80% of the vote in each of his four elections. His Legislative District included Loudonville, Menands, Schuyler Heights, and Mannsville in the Town of Colonie.
In 2012, Phil won a four-way Democratic primary to be the Democratic candidate for the 110th Assembly District, which is comprised of Colonie, Niskayuna, and Schenectady. While Phil had the endorsement of the Colonie Democratic Committee, he was opposed by members of the Assembly establishment. He won the primary by 10%.
In the General Election, Phil defeated Jennifer Whalen in a spirited race. Phil was attacked by his opponent for being a supporter of gun control, for example. He won with 57% of the vote. Phil was re-elected in both 2014 and 2016, when he received 61% of the vote.
Phil serves on the Assembly’s Health, Insurance, Judiciary, Transportation, and Children and Families Committees. He was the only first-term Assemblyman on the Health Committee.
Phil was a delegate for Bernie Sanders to the 2016 Democratic National Convention.
Phil is a life-long resident of the community where he and his wife Tricia raised their two children, Alexandra (21) and Aaron (18).
Alexandra is studying chemistry at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, where she also plays on the tennis team. She has been accepted to graduate school in Medicinal Chemistry. Aaron is a student at Schenectady County Community College studying music technology.
Phil is the son of retired Albany Academy Athletic Director Ernest Steck and the late Hackett Middle School teacher Roselyn Steck.
Council Member Jumaane D. Williams represents the 45th Council District in Brooklyn. He was elected in 2009, and re-elected in 2013. Williams currently serves as Deputy Leader of the New York City Council, and chair of the council’s Committee on Housing and Buildings. He is also co-chair of the Council’s Task Force to Combat Gun Violence, and a founding member of the Progressive Caucus, and is a member of the Black, Latino & Asian Caucus.
Council Member Williams is a first-generation Brooklynite of Grenadian heritage. He is a proud product of the City’s public school system. He attended Philippa Schuyler Middle School for the Gifted and Talented and Brooklyn Technical High School. He earned his bachelor’s in political science, and master’s in urban policy and administration at Brooklyn College. He began his career as Assistant Director for the Greater Flatbush Beacon School, and later went on to serve as the Executive Director of New York State Tenants & Neighbors. Council Member Williams is an advocate for affordable housing, anti-gun violence measures, fair policing, equity, and social justice. His major successes as Council Member include; the Community Safety Act, which created the Office of Inspector General for the New York Police Department, the Fair Chance Act and co-chairing the taskforce, which created New York’s Crisis Management System and Cure Violence Groups to combat gun violence.