Christine Quinn, the speaker of the New York City Council, will marry her partner of eleven years, Kim Catullo, in a civil ceremony on May 19, it has been announced.

The marriage will be officiated by Judith Kaye, a former chief-guest of the state, and will be attended by the current mayor, the governor of the state, and two US senators, the New York Times reports.

The announcement is thought to be especially significant, as Ms Quinn is expected to announce her candidacy for the mayoral elections next year. But, she herself has understated any political implications, saying, “We’re trying to make it really a day, a night that’s about friends and family and us.”

It has been suggested that her “brash and sharp-tongued” image might be softened by the announcement, and, although the couple have been reticent in talking to the press, they have been photographed together for Elle magazine, wearing designer clothing for the occasion.

She had admitted, in 2008, to allocating millions of dollars to non-existent organisations and hoarding the money for redistribution to other groups favoured by council members, though investigations into the issue was eventually dropped three years later.

Ms Quinn has been long active in the campaign to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples, and when New York finally equalised marriage, she said: “I really can’t really describe what this feels like… but it is one of the best feelings I have ever had in my life.”