North Star Fund Community Gala 2016

Thank you! You deserve a standing “O.”

2016 Honorees 2016 Honorees


George Gresham

Labor Rights Activist and President of 1199SEIU

Billie Jean King

Social Justice Pioneer and Sports Icon

Gara LaMarche

President of Democracy Alliance and Civil Rights Advocate


Organizing Nepali-speaking Communities for Workers’ Rights, Health Care Access, and Immigrant Rights

Black Alliance for Just Immigration

Engaging African American and Black Immigrant Communities for Racial, Social and Economic Justice

Gala Co-chairs

Nisha Atre
Martha Baker
Gene Carroll
Abigail E. Disney and Pierre N. Hauser
Marjorie Fine
Ian Fuller
Lloyd V. Martinez
Keith Mestrich
Lisa Mueller
Mark Reed and Daria Ilunga
Julissa Reynoso
Arva Rice
Richman Housing Resources, LLC
Deborah Sagner
Lisa Steglich
Maggie Williams
Barbara Winslow


The North Star Award honors individuals who have demonstrated an enduring commitment to social justice in their lives and work

George Gresham

George Gresham

George Gresham is the president of 1199SEIU, the largest health care union in the nation. He is a powerful leader inside and outside of the labor movement, amplifying support for health care workers in his union and for grassroots activists who have the best interests of working people at heart. Through his decades of union advocacy in local, state, and federal government, George has built a stronger voice for good jobs and social justice. His leadership has secured the highest standards for health care workers in the nation, including fair wages, affordable health benefits, dignified retirement, childcare, and a real voice on the job. Read more

Billie Jean King

Billie Jean King

Billie Jean King is a sports icon and social justice pioneer, the founder of the Billie Jean King Leadership Initiative, and co-founder of World TeamTennis. Since the 1970s, she has been an activist and organizer for equality. As both an elite athlete and an agent for progressive movements, Billie Jean’s leadership has been the catalyst for tremendous change in sports, politics, and culture. She is a member of the President’s Council for Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition, and was a member of the official U.S. delegation to the 2012 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Read more

Gara LaMarche

Gara LaMarche

Gara LaMarche is the president of Democracy Alliance. For more than three decades, he has been a leader in civil rights advocacy and philanthropy. He also fought against racial, income, and health care inequality, and he has worked to move the conversation about them into the public debate. Gara shepherds activist campaigns across the country to victory. Over the course of his career, he has used the tools of litigation, publicity and philanthropy, to build a national infrastructure that advances a more progressive agenda for issues from ending mass incarceration to protecting voting rights, while standing shoulder to shoulder with grassroots organizers. Read more


Recognizing grassroots activists striving for equality, economic justice, and peace



Adhikaar, meaning “rights,” is a women-led grassroots organization committed to improving the lives of the Nepali-speaking community through organizing and activism. Adhikaar focuses its social justice initiatives, direct service, and leadership development programs on workers’ and immigrants’ rights and access to health care. Adhikaar has touched the lives of millions of people in NYC and throughout the world. Guided by the needs of the community, Adhikaar has impacted policies and created new laws at local, state, national, and international levels. Adhikaar won victories recently with the Healthy Nail Salons campaign and the New York State Domestic Workers Bill of Rights. Read more

Black Alliance for Just Immigration

Black Alliance for Just Immigration

The Black Alliance for Just Immigration (BAJI) is a national organization that was formed to educate and engage African American and Black immigrant communities to organize and advocate for racial, social, and economic justice. Founded in 2006 in response to repressive immigration bills being considered on state and federal levels, immigrants and their supporters organized to bring Black voices to the fight. BAJI has grown from an Oakland/San Francisco-based community group to a New York City-based national force, impacting policy and activism for African Americans and Black immigrants. BAJI’s members ensure Black immigrant voices are heard in the racial justice movement. Read more

An ad in our e-journal is a great way to send a personal message of support
for this year’s honorees and North Star Fund.

2016 E-journal


Thank you to our early supporters for making this event a huge success.


Anonymous (3)
David Alexander
Amalgamated Bank
Dan and Rebecca Baker
Anne Bartley
Peter Brest
Christopher Street Financial
Tom Cramer and Michele Burger
Anne Delaney
Abigail E. Disney and Pierre N. Hauser
Hector Figueroa
Jennifer Flynn and Bela Walker
F.Y. Eye
GNYHA Ventures, Inc.
Andrew Goldberg and Karen Putterman
The Healthcare Education Project
Anne H. Hess and Craig Kaplan
Liz Hirsch and Karen Pratt

Michael J. Hirschhorn and Jimena P. Martinez
Greg Hoffman and Brad Jones
Hugh Hogan and Patrick Moffitt
Zan Jacobus
Jerome L. Greene Foundation
Asa Johnson
Johnson Family Foundation
Tom Johnson, Jr.
Shelley Levine and Larry Schwartz
Harris Lirtzman and Ralph Wilson
Lloyd V. Martinez
Vincent McGee
Ruth Messinger
New York State AFL-CIO
Christine Parker
Zahida Pirani
Karen Pittelman

Susan Butler Plum
Richman Housing Resources LLC
Lynda Rodolitz
Sagner Family Foundation
Dorothy and Peter Samuels
John Sayles and Maggie Renzi
Arline Segal
Deborah Slaner-Larkin
Lisa Steglich
S. Donald Sussman
Tani Takagi
Transport Workers Union, Local 100
Robert I. Usdan and Amy Yenkin
Katrina vanden Heuvel
Maggie Williams
Barbara Winslow
Sharon Wyse and David Satz


Abato, Rubenstein, and Abato
Katherine Acey
Cathy Albisa
Nisha Atre and Art Richardson
Anne Avis
Allison Barlow
Meg Barnette and Brad Lander
Gene Carroll
Center for Social Inclusion
Charitable Development Consulting
Ellen Chesler

Mario Cilento, New York State AFL-CIO
Marjorie Fine and Kevin Thomas
Ellen Galluccio
Rampa Hormel
Helena Huang, State Voices
Kevin Jennings and Jeff Davis
Russell G. and Elz Cuya Jones
Max Kenner, Bard Prison Initiative
David LaMarche
Isabelle H. Leighton and Timothy J. Cavaretta
Braeden Lentz
Levy Ratner, P.C.

Local 338
Carol Lynch
Inca Mohamed
Peter and Susan Osnos
Eva Paterson, Equal Justice Society
Susan Puder and Peter Verrengia
Michael Reynnells
Andrea Schlesinger
Alvarez Symonette
Bill and Melinda vanden Heuvel
Doug Wirth
Amy L. Wolf