Progressive activist Mitchell Stollberg died at the age of 66, following a struggle with cancer and other health issues. Born in the Bronx in 1954, Stollberg became an activist, like so many gay men, in response to the AIDS epidemic of the 80s and 90s.
His involvement in LGBT activism and progressive politics only intensified after he moved to South Florida. In his last decade Stollberg served in many political committees and activist groups and was an unsuccessful candidate for Oakland Park City Commissioner in 2016.
A strong supporter of Senator Bernie Sanders’ bid for the presidency, Stollberg was a Sanders delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 2016.
“I first met Mitchell in 2010 at the Oakland Park Local Government Academy,” City Commissioner Tim Lonergan said. “For many years he actively led the quality of life initiatives in Oakland Park including snipe sign and graffiti removal. Mitchell ran for the Oakland Park commission during a difficult time in his life; and the challenges proved difficult to overcome. He was a strong advocate of the Progressive Democratic ideals and fought for the much-needed Medicare For All, Equality for All, Criminal Justice Reform, Education Reform and so much more!”
Stollberg worked in the marketing department of Service America for many years; and worked for a time making jewelry. But Stollberg’s employment history is second to his political résumé, which is quite impressive. He was a member of the Democratic Executive Committee of Broward County, Broward Democratic Club, Progressive Democrats of America (Broward Chapter), Democratic Progressive Caucus of Florida, Oakland Park Democratic Club, and the Dolphin Democrats LGBTA Caucus. He was also a Board Member of the North Andrews Neighborhood Association and a volunteer for Oakland Park’s Graffiti Patrol, removing graffiti and snipe signs within the City from 2014 to 2017. Stollberg’s health issues, though daunting, only encouraged his activism. He became a strong supporter of Medicare for All, which in turn led to his involvement in Sanders’ presidential campaign (along with LGBT rights and other progressive issues).
Dr. Jack Doren, a friend and fellow activist, remembers Stollberg as one with “the highest of principles and integrity, who showed his true leadership in fighting for what was right. During that period, he spoke at nearly every Commission meeting, to the point where when he was not present, one of the Commissioners asked publicly, ‘Where is Mitchell?’ and everyone laughed. His leadership inspired young people to become involved. His passion was contagious.”
Alfredo Olvera, President of the Dolphin Democrats, remembers Stollberg as “a passionate and dedicated political activist who fought hard for everything he believed in. He was kind to me and to everyone he met. The world has lost a great man, but I know it’s a better place because of Mitchell.”
The former mayor of Oakland Park, John Adornato III, knows how you can best celebrate his life. “The best way to honor this man is to get out and VOTE!,” he said.