Assemblymember Gallagher, Senator Salazar Honor Neighborhood Leaders at Second Annual Women of Distinction Event

Women’s History Month begins with celebrating local women making history today

On the second day of Women’s History Month, Assemblymember Emily Gallagher, in partnership with Senator Julia Salazar, held their annual Women of Distinction ceremony at Bar Blondeau in the Wythe Hotel. This event acknowledged the amazing work of courageous and dedicated leaders in the 50th District (and beyond).

Trina Rose Cutugno was honored for her work advocating for home care, accessible and affordable housing, disability inclusion, and health justice. Although currently living in Greenpoint, Trina Rose grew up on Staten Island where her mother told her, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” Trina Rose has lived by those words, saying, “As a disabled woman in this world, what I try to do as an advocate is work towards creating those conditions that make that way possible.” She’s also an accomplished artist and filmmaker.

Vivian Legions, a longtime resident of Berry St.-South 9th St Houses, was celebrated for her work as President of the Tenant Association where she has been a tenacious advocate for the residents she represents by organizing community events, distributing food and PPE during the pandemic, and fighting for quality-of-life improvements. Assemblymember Gallagher applauded Vivian’s contributions to her community, saying, “Ms. Legions has the tenacity, the will, and the warm personality that allows her to continue to fight time and time again against the odds to get what her community needs.”

Lina Lee was honored for her service to the community as the co-founder and executive director of Communities Resist, a legal services nonprofit representing the most vulnerable tenants and helping to organize tenant associations, not to mention being a longtime tenant lawyer herself. In thanking the women in her life, Lina said, “In this line of work, it has been the women who have shown me what it means to be a leader. And it doesn’t mean that you’re the loudest in the room, it doesn’t mean that you have the last word, it means that you are the last one still standing and pushing, and you are the one who is never going to give in.”

Dana Rachlin was celebrated by Assemblymember Gallagher and Senator Salazar for her inspirational work as co-founder of “We Build The Block”, which supports communities facing over-policing, mass incarceration, and gun violence, as well as numerous other innovative public safety, community and civic programs over the years. Speaking about her work, Dana said, “What it takes to create change is small groups of diverse people coming together to do work after an eruption.”

Additionally, Senator Salazar honored the incredible work of Lauren Comito, Tammy Green, and Hannah Anousheh. Assemblymember Gallagher and Senator Salazar would like to take this Women’s History Month to celebrate all the amazing women in the community and their vital contributions.