Labor group head suddenly resigns days after romance between its lobbyist, NY Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie revealed

The head of a labor group repped in Albany by the lobbyist recently revealed to be Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie’s gal pal abruptly stepped down this week, The Post has learned.

The sudden resignation of Dean Angelakos, from Greater New York Laborers-Employers Cooperation and Education Trust (LECET), came days after the outlet NY Focus reported last week that the 56-year-old Dem has been in a romantic relationship with 32-year-old Rebecca Lamorte.

Rebecca Lamorte, a lobbyist for LECET, also advocates on disability rights issues after an attack on a subway train in 2013 left her with nerve damage in one of her legs. Helayne Seidman
Rebecca Lamorte, a lobbyist for LECET, also advocates on disability rights issues after an attack on a subway train in 2013 left her with nerve damage in one of her legs. Helayne Seidman

Since then, Albany insiders have been abuzz over who could have leaked a letter, Lamorte had presented to her higher ups seeking permission to continue lobbying the Assembly while dating the speaker.

Lamorte is LECET’s legislative and communications director and a regular presence in the state Capitol where she lobbies primarily on labor issues, according to public lobbying disclosures.

“Dean Angelakos offered his resignation as Executive Director of LECET, and we accepted it. We wish him the best,” the co-chairman of LECET’s board, Mike Hellstrom, wrote in a statement to the Post.

“Rebecca Lamorte will continue to be a member of our staff. She will remain our lobbyist in Albany,” he added.

Hellstrom did not go into details about why Angelakos resigned — nor the group’s arrangement with the speaker’s office to avoid conflicts-of-interest.

“Protocols are in place and being followed so that she can continue her work for us. People in public service can do their jobs ethically while keeping their personal lives private,” Hellstrom’s statement said.

At least one Albany insider believes Angelakos’ departure could be tied to Lamorte and Heastie’s relationship being made public.

“It definitely looks connected to what’s happening with LECET’s lobbyists and the Speakers office,” the source said.

Dean Angelakos voluntarily stepped down from his role as LECET’s executive director this week. LinkedIn/Dean Angelakos
Dean Angelakos voluntarily stepped down from his role as LECET’s executive director this week. LinkedIn/Dean Angelakos

The letter obtained by NY Focus, which was penned by Heastie’s counsel, outlined some procedures to avoid the speaker being directly lobbied by LECET and the labor group’s associated contractors and member organizations.

Angelakos did not return requests for comment.

His name had quietly been stripped from LECET’s website in recent days. His LinkedIn account remains unchanged, still reflecting him as executive director.

According to his LinkedIn, Angelakos started as LECET’s executive director in May 2022 after serving in executive leadership roles for several businesses over the last decade.

Assembly Speaker excoriated reporters earlier this week, saying he won’t talk about his personal life. Robert Miller
Assembly Speaker excoriated reporters earlier this week, saying he won’t talk about his personal life. Robert Miller

Lamorte and Heastie’s office immediately respond to request for comment.

Heastie blasted reporters when asked about his new love affair earlier this week, saying his office put appropriate ethical safeguards in place to prevent his relationship from being a conflict of interest.

“I am never, again let me make that clear, addressing my personal life,” Heastie said, ripping into reporters.

The revelation about Heastie’s relationship comes as Albany lawmakers and the Governor are hashing out a state budget deal. LECET is one of the labor groups lobbying around a potentially major package to expand housing supply in the Empire State.

So far, lawmakers have shied away from calling for the speaker to excuse himself from the landmark housing talks due to his relationship with Lamorte.

“The speaker has addressed it and the speaker has said there’s protocols in place and I trust the speaker at his word,” Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-Yonkers) told reporters Wednesday when asked about the speaker’s relationship.

Stewart-Cousins also said she doesn’t think the relationship should have an impact on the speaker’s participation in negotiations.