Day job: Director of Business Development, Intra Mail Network
Civic or community involvement: Chair, Prince George’s County Cable Commission; member, Saint Ambrose Parish Council
My wife and I have two children we are raising here, and our family has called this district home for a dozen years. We love it here. We also have been waiting to realize at least some of the many opportunities that seem to pass by our District, including transit-oriented development, full execution of the enterprise zone, and even environmental improvements to one of our greatest assets, the Anacostia River.
I have taken a “listen first” approach to hearing and understanding the needs and concerns of our district’s citizens. From listening to our residents, I understand that they, like I do, love this community and want it to be cleaner, safer, livable and more prosperous. We need better code enforcement and property tax relief for our neighbors in need.
We are home to four underdeveloped Metro stops. Our schools are aging and in need of attention, and we must improve graduation rates. Still, the possibilities for our District are significant. We have a diverse and capable workforce, transit-oriented development infrastructure, a historic national treasure in the Anacostia Waterfront, and a vibrant arts community, among other attributes that make District 47A a potential economic engine for Maryland.
My commitment to this District is neither newfound nor short-term. I serve as chairman of the Prince George’s County Cable Commission and as a member of the Saint Ambrose Church Council. After graduation from Harvard, I worked as a small business sales and marketing executive for more than 20 years. My education and small business experience have helped build skill sets needed to bring our local issues to the state level. Ensuring that our district is appropriately represented in Annapolis is key to the livability of our community today and for future generations. I seek to do so as your Delegate.
Occupation: Community Advisory Coordinator, Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department
Civic and Community Involvement: Mayor, Colmar Manor (2000 – 2010); councilmember, Colmar Manor (1995 – 2000); appointed trustee, Maryland Governor’s Affordable Housing Trust Board; vice president and secretary, Maryland Black Mayors Association; member, Veterans of Foreign Wars Ladies’ Auxiliary; vice president, Prince George’s County Elected Women; member, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP); member, Prince George’s County Professional Fire Fighters & Paramedics Association; member, Prince George’s County Municipal Association; organizer, Colmar Manor Neighborhood Watch; and volunteer, Anacostia Watershed Society.
On a personal note, I have been married 26 years to Jeffrey T. Fennell, Sr., and have two children, Jeffrey T. Fennell, Jr., and DeJanee M. Fennell. As a public servant for over 18 years, I will uphold responsive and progressive government for the citizens of District 47A and the state of Maryland [by]:
- spurring economic development within underserved communities
- advocating social equality for underserved residents
- protecting the socioeconomic integrity of our senior adult population
- prioritizing strategic development of Youth Service Programs
- enhanc[ing] Health and Human Services programs for our country’s Armed Forces
- Collaborating sponsorship of district and statewide campaigns for environmental advocacy and stewardship to help protect our natural resources and mitigate our carbon footprint
Day Job: Systems Integration Consultant (USDA, DoD)
Civic Involvement: Hyattsville City Council
I grew up in Rochester, New York, during a period where the largest employers, Kodak and Xerox, were downsizing and the impact on families and communities was devastating. My campaign is devoted to addressing the jobs crisis in our district and introducing the next generation of voters and young leaders to the primary process.
Because this district continues to suffer through tough economic circumstances, we need a delegation that has a plan to bring jobs and help families stay above water. This has been my focus as a Hyattsville City Councilman [and] will be my focus as a Delegate in Annapolis.
At the end [of] my first term, I want families to have a clear path toward a better future, including strong job opportunities and safer, sustainable communities. I want Maryland have a strategic roadmap for becoming the most technology advanced state in the union, including our workforce and education system.
My plan includes retraining workers for the technology economy and moving the State of Maryland to embrace technology in improving customer service and reducing costs for taxpayers.
Our district’s growing senior community must not continue to be overlooked. As a City Councilmember, in addition to promoting safe and clean communities, I have been an advocate of our Aging In Place volunteer group. I think programs of this nature should be adopted by our State. Our seniors are living longer, healthy lives and we must do what we can to ensure our communities remain welcoming.
As the youngest candidate in the race, with a wealth of experience on the issues, my campaign demonstrates that our young leaders stand poised to serve our communities. We are expanding the Democratic voting base into the next generation of voters and awakening the next generation of leaders, and we encourage you to stand with us.
Day Job: Community Affairs Liaison for Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office
Community and Civic Engagement: Chair, Prince George’s County Public Schools Law, Education, Public Service Academy Advisory Board; Chair, Prince George’s County Workforce Investment Board Youth Councils Planning and Operations Subcommittee
I have served the voters of District 47A residents since 2011 [as state delegate]. As a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, I have fought for a more progressive tax structure and supported the successful legislation to lower the tax burden on lower income families. I also voted for the increase in the state’s minimum wage.
I was selected to be a deputy majority whip and also served on the Campaign Finance Reform Commission, where I helped institute one of the nation’s most aggressive reforms of campaign finance laws.
During this past session, I helped pass a series of bills to improve the quality of life in our district. Among them are measures to protect our families, strengthen our domestic violence laws, and clarify protective and peace orders. I voted for the Fairness for all Marylanders Act to further discourage discrimination and violence in the workplace and elsewhere. I worked to pass the Regional Institutions Strategic Enterprise Zone, designed to jump start businesses around the University of Maryland. I was instrumental in securing $325,000 for capital improvements to spur job growth and bring improvements to buildings and outdoor facilities in Brentwood, Bladensburg and North Brentwood.
In my second term, I will continue to work to provide equitable funding for K-12 education and support greater accessibility, accountability and affordability of healthcare. I will also continue to fight for a cleaner environment, including mitigating storm and waste water runoff into the Anacostia River.
House of Delegates 47A
Day Job: Assistant to the Vice President, Communications Workers of America
Civic or community involvement: Mount Rainier City Council, Prince George’s County Cable Commission, executive member and former treasurer of the Gateway Community Development Corporation
Seven years ago, Mount Rainier wanted to take away collective bargaining rights for [its] workers. As a union organizer, I was not going to let that happen in my neighborhood. I stood up for those working families.
I have spent the last 30-plus years as a union and community organizer. I have fought for and represented hard-working Americans in several states on the East Coast. For the last seven years I have served as a city councilman for Mount Rainier.
Since [Delegate] Doyle Niemann is running for County Council and [Delegate] Jolene Ivey is running for lieutenant governor, I decided it was time for a candidate I would be excited to vote for. I wanted a candidate that had the same values and ideals as I have as a member of a labor union. I decided it was time for me to be the change I wanted to see.
My platform is simple: I want to bring more revenue into the state to improve the quality of life [for residents]. The only way to [do that] is by closing corporate loopholes that allow companies doing business in Maryland to not pay Maryland taxes. Our taxes continue to go up while these companies get off tax free. It is not fair for the working families of District 47. I want to change the way business is done in Annapolis. Too often, top aides and elected officials leave Annapolis to work for lobbying firms representing big business, forgetting about working families.
It is time for us to have someone who represents working people, not corporations. Vote Jimmy Tarlau for State Delegate on June 24.