New York City official has its first nightlife mayor.
Nearly six months after Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the new role, the Office of Media and Entertainment announced Ariel Palitz would take over the role, serving “as a central point of contact between city agencies, the nightlife industry and city residents, promoting a safe and vibrant nightlife scene.”
The role comes with a number of responsibilities including running the Office of Nightlife, monitoring venue issues and violations and ensuring a safe and “vibrant” club scene across the five boroughs. According to the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME), the gig comes with a salary ranging between $60,435 and $130,000, per experience.
The MOME was looking for candidates who had at least five years of experience working in the club scene or music industry and a keen ability to manage and resolve conflict, among other requirements.
Though we finally have an official verdict, we decided to create our own list of nightlife mayor finalists, consisting solely of TV characters who’d each bring a unique set of skills to the new position.
Chuck Bass, “Gossip Girl”
“Gossip Girl’s” born-billionaire Chuck Bass (Ed Westwick) has basically been preparing for the role of nightlife mayor his entire life. The Upper East Sider spends nearly all of his days — high school and beyond — frequenting the city’s elite venues, including his own. He’d bring club-owning experience and schmoozing skills to the job, plus a penchant for theme parties.
Donna Meagle, “Parks and Recreation”
Donna Meagle (Retta) is by far the smartest investor behind Pawnee’s “sickest nightclub,” The Snakehole Lounge. Unlike Tom Haverford, she knows to keep her assets hidden and manages to hold onto her shares when the Parks Department dubs the financial venture a conflict of interest. She’d bring financial expertise to the job.
Lane Kim, “Gilmore Girls”
Lane Kim (Keiko Agena) would easily transition from Stars Hollow music expert to NYC nightlife mayor. The “Gilmore Girls” character would be in her element in the city’s bustling performance scene and look to bring some of the biggest names in the industry, classic and current, to local venues. She may or may not try to book her own band a few gigs here and there, but that’s par for the course. She’d bring an endless roster of bands and a knowledge of a variety of music genres to the job.
While we never actually get to meet Gandalf on “Friends,” mention of the “ultimate party animal” in season 4, episode 9 makes him worthy enough of a candidate. Gandalf is Ross and Chandler’s long lost friend, mentioned in “The One Where They’re Going To Party!” We’re going out on a limb here to say his crazy party antics would make him seriously knowledgeable of the city’s nightlife scene and, in turn, a perfect candidate for nightlife mayor.
Tasha “Taystee” Jefferson, “Orange Is The New Black”
Yes, her current incarceration would immediately disqualify her for the job, but in a perfect world Taystee (Danielle Brooks) would thrive in the position of authority. She’s an excellent mediator (see: all of season 5) and her organizational skills are on point. Plus, all that time in the library might have made her an expert on the city’s legal regulations.
Jesse Katsopolis, “Full House”
If we were to convince Jesse Katsopolis (John Stamos) to leave behind his San Francisco roots and head to Manhattan with his wife Rebecca, we know the role of nightlife mayor would catch his eye. The former frontman of Jesse and the Rippers brings far more than five years of experience in the music industry to the gig.
Jack, “Will & Grace”
Jack hasn’t exactly been one to hold down a job, but this one’s right in his city and could be his big break in the industry. From cabaret singer to playwright to theater actor and now Bronx acting teacher, Jack (Sean Hayes) has enough experience under his belt for the role.
Cookie Lyon, “Empire”
If the city is eyeing a no-nonsense authoritative figure to step into the role, look no further than Cookie Lyon (Taraji P. Henson). She had a rocky start to her success, but as the co-founder of multimillion-dollar record label Empire Entertainment, she’d easily beat out any other candidate in an interview standoff.