Bruce Friedman, a Bronx native who became a major player in Queens politics, passed away last week at Mt. Sinai Hospital after a battle with leukemia.
Councilman Daniel Dromm, who founded the LGBT Queens club 25 years ago, called Friedman’s leadership “pioneering.”
“He tirelessly fought for LGBT rights at a time when it was not popular to do so,” Dromm said in a statement. “Bruce’s work led to the election of numerous LGBT-supportive public officials around the borough.”
A graduate of Theodore Roosevelt High School, Friedman attended Wilmington College in Delaware and John Jay College of Criminal Justice, where he served in the school’s law club.
Friedman, interested in politics at an early age, was elected vice president of the Village Independent Democrats in Manhattan.
He moved to Queens in 1984, and became a member of the Lesbian and Gay Democratic Club of Queens in 1997. He served as president from 2004 to 2012.
Friedman is survived by his sister Margot Johnson, who lives in Florida.
“His contributions to the LGBT movement in Queens are numerous,” Dromm said. “His strength and spirit will be sorely missed by LGBT and non-LGBT people alike.”