David Catania

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David Catania
Member of the Council of the District of Columbia
from the at-large district
In office
December 15, 1997 – January 2, 2015
Preceded byArrington Dixon
Succeeded byElissa Silverman
Personal details
Born (1968-01-16) January 16, 1968 (age 52)
Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.
Political partyRepublican (Before 2004)
Independent (2004–present)
Bill Enright (m. 2017)
EducationGeorgetown University (BS, JD)

David A. Catania (born January 16, 1968)[2] is an American independent politician and lawyer from Washington, D.C. He was formerly an at-large member of the Council of the District of Columbia, which he gave up to pursue an unsuccessful run in the 2014 mayoral election.

Early life and education[edit]

Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Catania is a graduate of Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service and Georgetown University Law Center.

D.C. Council[edit]

He was elected to the Council as a Republican in a 1997 special election with 7% voter turnout,[3] but elected to a full term in 1998, and re-elected in 2002 and 2006.[4][5] Catania lives in the Dupont Circle neighborhood.[5]

Catania was the first openly gay member of the D.C. Council and one of a small number of openly gay Republican office-holders.[4] This led to a conflict within his party when President George W. Bush spoke in favor of an amendment to the United States Constitution to ban same-sex marriage. Catania opposed the amendment and became a vocal opponent of Bush's 2004 re-election. In response, the District of Columbia Republican Committee decertified him as a delegate to the 2004 Republican National Convention.[6] Catania announced his endorsement of the Democratic presidential candidate, John Kerry, one week prior to the convention.[7] In September 2004, Catania left the party and became an independent, citing his displeasure with its direction on urban and social issues.[8][9] He was re-elected in 2006 and 2010 as an independent.[4]

Catania was most recently the chairperson of the Council's Committee on Education and was a member of the Committee on Government Operations, the Committee on Finance and Revenue, and the Committee on Health. Catania chaired the Committee on Health between 2005 and 2012.[citation needed] As one of two openly gay members then serving on the Council, Catania played a major role in the city's recognition of same-sex unions and legalization of same-sex marriage.[4][10][11][12]


Catania opposed terms limits for elected officials. In 2001, Catania voted in favor of legislation that overturned the results of a popular referendum limiting members of the D.C. Council to two terms.[13][14]

Post-Council career[edit]

DC Capital Pride Parade, 2014

In 2014, Catania was unsuccessful in a bid for mayor of Washington, D.C. In 2015, he joined the international law firm Greenberg Traurig, where he focuses his practice on healthcare, government law and strategy, and public policy.[15]

In 2018, he served as the U.S. Head of Public Affairs for Starship Technologies, a robotic delivery company.[16] In February, Catania opened a District-based lobbying firm with Benjamin Young, his former chief of staff and campaign manager.[17]

In 2018, Catania was campaign co-chair for S. Kathryn Allen, a former insurance executive who sought Catania's former seat on the Council, held by Elissa Silverman.[17] An investigation determined that more than half of Allen's signatures were fraudulently collected and her name was not included on the ballot.[18]


Catania married floral designer Bill Enright on August 5, 2017 in a ceremony officiated by his former Council colleague Mary Cheh.[1]


  1. ^ a b Chibbaro, Jr., Lou (August 9, 2017). "Catania weds in ceremony performed by Council colleague". The Washington Blade. Retrieved February 16, 2018.
  2. ^ "David A. Catania". The Washington Post. highbeam.com. January 6, 2005. pp. T11. Archived from the original on October 25, 2012. Retrieved July 16, 2008.
  3. ^ Janofsky, Michael (December 11, 1997). "Washington Council Election May Forecast Change". The New York Times. nytimes. pp. A22. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  4. ^ a b c d Craig, Tim (December 15, 2009). "Poised to mark a milestone: For D.C. Council member, same-sex marriage bill a personal and professional victory". The Washington Post. washingtonpost.com. pp. B01. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  5. ^ a b Silverman, Elissa (October 29, 2006). "For Catania, Mellowing With Age, Incumbency". The Washington Post. washingtonpost.com. pp. C01. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  6. ^ Williams, Vanessa (May 28, 2004). "Catania Leaves D.C. GOP Over Convention Seat: Ouster as Delegate Tied To Opposition to Bush". The Washington Post. washingtonpost.com. pp. B01. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  7. ^ Hsu, Spencer S.; Williams, Vanessa (August 30, 2004). "Gay Activists Demand a Seat in 'Big Tent': Pataki, Specter Among Allies at N.Y. Rally". The Washington Post. washingtonpost.com. pp. A07. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  8. ^ Williams, Vanessa (September 29, 2004). "Catania to Become Independent Today". The Washington Post. washingtonpost.com. pp. B02. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  9. ^ O'Bryan, Will (October 7, 2004). "Dropping the GOP: David Catania's new political life as an independent". Metro Weekly. metroweekly.com. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  10. ^ "DC approves same-sex marriage law". BBC News. news.bbc.co.uk. May 6, 2009. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  11. ^ Mieszkowski, Katherine (April 7, 2009). "Same-sex marriage: Who's next?". Salon. salon.com. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  12. ^ Craig, Tim (December 15, 2009). "D.C. Council approves bill legalizing gay marriage: Bill heads to Fenty's desk, still must survive congressional review period". The Washington Post. washingtonpost.com. Retrieved December 15, 2009.
  13. ^ Chan, Sewell (January 9, 2001). "D.C. Council Considers Repeal of Term Limits". Washington Post. Retrieved October 1, 2016.
  14. ^ Washington Times (May 3, 2001). "Up with term limits". Washington Times. Retrieved October 1, 2016.
  15. ^ Reed, Tina (March 18, 2015). "David Catania lands health role at Greenburg Traurig". Washington Business Journal. Retrieved February 16, 2018.
  16. ^ Sidman, Jessica (May 11, 2018). "More Delivery Robots Are Coming to DC". Washingtonian. Retrieved May 16, 2018.
  17. ^ a b Schwartzman, Paul (June 29, 2018). "Why a progressive D.C. lawmaker is suddenly facing opposition". Washington Post. Retrieved June 29, 2018.
  18. ^ Nirappil, Fenit (September 11, 2018). "Board boots business-backed council candidate from D.C. ballot, citing signature fraud". The Washington Post. Retrieved September 17, 2018.

External links[edit]

Council of the District of Columbia
Preceded by
Arrington Dixon
Member of the Council of the District of Columbia
from the at-large district

Succeeded by
Elissa Silverman