Washington, DC – Today, on the first day of Pride Month, Equality PAC Co-Chairs Chairman Mark Takano (D-CA) and Congressman David Cicilline (D-RI) announced three endorsements in key House races in the 2022 midterm elections. Equality PAC endorsed former State Delegate Heather Mizeur for Maryland’s 1st Congressional District to defeat incumbent Republican Andy Harris; Buncombe County Commissioner Jasmine Beach-Ferrara for North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District to defeat incumbent Madison Cawthorn; and Arizona State Representative Daniel Hernandez for Arizona’s 2nd Congressional District to fill the seat vacated by retiring Democratic Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick.
“Each of these stellar candidates are battle tested and are ready to serve their constituents and alongside us in the House of Representatives,” said Equality PAC Co-Chairs Chairman Mark Takano and Congressman David Cicilline. “Heather and Jasmine are strong leaders in their communities and have watched anti-equality Republican incumbents like Andy Harris and Madison Cawthorn trample over their constituents for their own personal and political gain. They are stepping up to offer their constituents a better deal with a Member of Congress that actually fights for the issues that can make a tangible difference in people’s lives – like access to affordable healthcare and quality education, a living wage, equal rights and opportunities, and much more. And in Arizona, we are confident that Daniel will build upon the incredible legacy of our friend and colleague Ann Kirkpatrick and that he will bring a strong and distinctive voice to the Democratic caucus, both from his experience as a Latino member of the LGTBQ community as well as from his time in public office at the local and state level. We know that Heather, Jasmine, and Daniel will be outstanding members of the Equality Caucus, always fighting to ensure full equality for all LGBTQ Americans and we implore voters in each of these districts to send these incredible leaders and changemakers to Congress to fight on their behalf.”
Heather Mizeur has spent her professional life over the last twenty-five years passionately engaged in public service. Heather was known as a legislative powerhouse during the eight years she served in the Maryland House of Delegates. Before her election to the Maryland General Assembly, she served as U.S. Senator John Kerry’s Domestic Policy Director for four years and was the principal architect of his 2004 presidential campaign’s health care reform agenda. Today, she is a small business owner and farmer, and lives with her wife Deborah on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.
Jasmine Beach-Ferrara is a two-term Buncombe County Commissioner, who won her most recent election by double digits against a popular, well-known Republican. On the commission, Jasmine helped to expand access to early childhood education, delivered solutions to families struggling with the opioid crisis and worked to bring good, family-supporting jobs to Western North Carolina. As the executive director of the Campaign for Southern Equality, she helped win marriage equality in Mississippi and North Carolina by showing up in small towns and telling the stories of LGBTQ families. An ordained minister, service and faith are the driving forces in her work.
Jasmine grew up in North Carolina and received her undergraduate degree from Brown University. She holds a Master of Fine Arts and completed her Master of Divinity School at Harvard Divinity School. She served on the Biden Foundation’s Advisory Council for Advancing LGBTQ Equality. Jasmine and her wife Meghann live in Asheville, North Carolina with their three children.
Daniel Hernandez was born and raised in Tucson, the son of a Mexican immigrant. A first-generation college student, Daniel attended the University of Arizona when he interned for then-Congresswoman Gabby Giffords and was there on the day of the tragic attack on her life which resulted in 6 deaths and 13 people injured. Daniel was the first to administer first aid to the Congresswoman before the EMTs arrived and was named a national hero by President Obama.
Inspired by Congresswoman Giffords’ commitment to public service, Daniel went on to advocate for access to reproductive health care and education as program manager for Raíz, Planned Parenthood’s Latino outreach program. He was elected to his local school board, where he became the youngest school board president in the district’s history. Since 2017, Daniel has served in the Arizona State House.
Equality PAC is the political arm of the Congressional LGBTQ Equality Caucus and is dedicated to the full legal and societal equality for LGBTQ Americans. All funds raised into Equality PAC are spent supporting and electing openly LGBTQ individuals and strong LGBTQ allies to the United States Congress and Senate who are committed to passing the Equality ACT and to ensuring full civil rights and protections for all LGBTQ Americans.In total, Equality PAC raised over $6.3m for Equality PAC during the previous two-year cycle — with generous supporters in all 50 states, Washington, DC, and Puerto Rico and throughout the business community. In addition to this, Equality PAC raised over $2.7m directly for our endorsed LGBTQ congressional candidates and funded crucial independent expenditures.