September 23, 2018
Politics & Opinion
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Meet The Candidates

Voice Media
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May 17, 2018

In anticipation of the primary election coming up on Tuesday, June 26, the Pasadena Voice invited each of the candidates for public office to submit a short bio letting readers know who they are. This is what the people asking for your vote want you to know about them:


County Executive


Steuart Pittman

Steuart Pittman has never run for office and thought he never would. He is a farmer, businessman and nonprofit executive with a talent for bringing people together to solve problems.

Pittman operates a South County farm that has been in his family for eight generations. He also created Retired Racehorse Project, a national nonprofit that facilitates the retraining and rehoming of thousands of horses each year. Before that, he spent nine years as a community organizer, helping local groups influence decisions made by their elected officials.

Pittman is running for county executive because the incumbent has failed to manage growth in a fiscally and environmentally responsible way. Rather than adhering to the plans that our elected representatives approved to manage growth, the current administration pursued what it called a “pro-growth agenda” led by a transition team of primarily development interests.

Taxpayer-funded growth incentives, like the $36 million tax break for Live! Casino Hotel, have forced the county to balance its budget on the backs of teachers, firefighters and police. The county has put off tough budget decisions with gimmicks like 30-year bonds that save money now and burden us with interest payments later.

Traffic, school overcrowding, housing needs and environmental protection are concerns everywhere but have different impacts in Severna Park, South County, Brooklyn Park, Pasadena and each of the 16 small areas where planning took place in the pre-Leopold/Schuh era. The 2019 countywide growth plan must be based on community-driven updates to the 16 Small Area Plans.

Pittman’s twin boys are in second grade at Davidsonville Elementary. He plans to grow old in this county and would love for his kids to live nearby. He believes that can happen for many of us here if we plan and govern, both fiscally and environmentally, for the next generation.


Steve Schuh

Steve Schuh is a lifelong county resident, small-business owner, father, husband, former state delegate and current county executive of Anne Arundel County. Three years ago, he pledged to do everything he could to help the county achieve its full potential and to become the best place to live, work and start a business in Maryland. This goal was — and is — ambitious, and he seeks re-election to continue the work he has started.

Schuh’s administration has focused its efforts in five areas: reducing taxes and fees, strengthening education, enhancing public safety, reforming county government and improving the overall quality of life in the county.

Members of the administration instituted the largest tax cut and the largest fee cut in county history and have enacted more than $67 million in cumulative tax and fee relief. They launched the largest school construction effort in county history and implemented three years of teacher pay increases. They budgeted three straight years of record education funding and bailed out the nearly bankrupt teacher health benefits program. They made historic investments in public safety infrastructure with the new police academy, central booking facility and four new fire stations. They increased police and firefighter pay and added more than 80 new public safety positions to combat heroin and gangs. They launched a $15 million school safety initiative. They reformed county government by balancing the budget, streamlining operations, promoting diversity and focusing on customer service. And they have improved quality of life by providing more access to natural resources and by investing in programs that uplift people with challenges and help them improve their station in life.

While reflecting on this term’s accomplishments, Schuh knows there is still much to do to achieve his goals. He looks forward to continuing this journey with you and thanks you for your support.


County Council


Debbie Ritchie

Debbie Ritchie and her husband, Keith, moved to Pasadena 30 years ago after growing up in other areas of the county. She spent her career as a registered nurse at the Department of Veterans Affairs and began volunteering at Jacobsville Elementary, which her daughter attended. She continued to serve in various PTA leadership roles until her daughter graduated from Chesapeake High School in 2008. Although her time with PTA came to an end, her desire to serve did not. In 2010, she was appointed to the Board of Education, where she served until 2016.

So, why does she want to be your next council member?

She knows that the increase in development, traffic and crime has changed the quality of life for many people. You may not have felt in the past that you’ve always had a seat at the table when important decisions were being made that directly impacted Pasadena. She wants to change that.

If you want to:

·         Have good schools and a safe place to call home

·         Be able to travel our roadways without long delays on well-repaired roads

·         Be part of the decision-making process regarding development in our area

·         Be able to enjoy the nature that surrounds us

·         Have vibrant locally owned and operated businesses

…then you must elect a representative who understands the importance of reaching out and being inclusive to all citizens. People might have different interests and priorities, but Ritchie believes everyone deserves to have their voice heard and considered — and to be educated on the issues.

Ritchie would love to hear from you! If you would like her to attend a meeting or event before November 6, email her at or call 443-424-2018. Find and like “Friends of Debbie Ritchie” on Facebook or visit


Dana Smallwood-Friia

Dana Smallwood-Friia is a Republican candidate for county council.


Nathan Volke

Nathan Volke was raised in Pasadena and graduated from Pasadena schools. He married his high school sweetheart from Chesapeake High School, and then they decided to start their family here. It should be pretty clear: He and his family love Pasadena. This community was an amazing place to grow up. He wants his son to have that same experience as he grows up. Overdevelopment, crime and drugs, and too much taxation — these problems are threatening that future. The Pasadena community has been good to Volke and his family. He views serving on the county council as a chance to give back and help shape the future of the community he loves.

For the last eight years, Volke was privileged to serve this community on the Anne Arundel County Republican Central Committee. From 2013 to 2016, he led the committee as the chairman and worked to elect Governor Hogan in 2014 and President Trump in 2016.

Volke is a conservative Republican. He believes in limited government. He supports lowering taxes, especially for retirees and those who have served their community and country. He wants government to spend money smarter. He wants to see us enforce our immigration laws. He believes we must protect the lives of the unborn. He believes the Second Amendment is an individual right and must be protected. He believes the development process must be transparent and any proposals for new development need input from the people who will be most affected — you — before they are passed.

If elected, Volke will be a responsive representative and advocate of your needs. He will fight for this community as he fights for his clients as an attorney every day. He shares your values and will be your voice to protect your community today and for the future.



State's Attorney


Wes Adams

Wes Adams is a career prosecutor with more than 20 years of experience. He was first elected to serve as the state’s attorney for Anne Arundel County in 2014 and has spent the past four years keeping our families safe. A distinguished leader who continually develops innovative techniques to reduce crime, Adams is a champion of victim’s rights, a sought-after teacher and a distinguished trial lawyer.

Since being elected, Adams authorized the first wire-tap leading to the largest heroin seizure in county history. He was the first prosecutor in the United States to partner with police, firefighters and county mental health clinicians in the county’s innovative Safe Stations program, leading to a 12 percent decrease in overdoses in our county in 2018. He has continuously worked with students throughout the county, focusing on such topics as drug prevention, cyber safety and teen dating violence.

Under his administration, Adams has reduced weak plea bargains, and his philosophy toward protecting domestic violence victims has produced a dramatic increase in trials against and sentences of domestic abusers. He has increased the homicide conviction rate to nearly 95 percent, improved office technology and instituted a state-of-the-art intelligence-driven prosecution model targeting gangs and drug dealers. Since Adams took office, Anne Arundel County has seen a significant decrease in major crime, with nearly 900 fewer incidents annually than in 2014.

Adams serves on the Maryland State Board for Crime Victim’s Services, the Maryland Police Standards & Training Commission and the Maryland State’s Attorneys Association. He was selected by Governor Larry Hogan as one of 15 Maryland law enforcement experts to serve on the Governor’s Council for Gangs and Violent Criminal Networks, advising the governor on cutting-edge crime detection and prevention methods.

He lives in Severna Park with his wife and three children. An active member of our community, he began coaching football and baseball in 2007, and served on the Greater Severna Park Council between 2008 and 2014.


Ann Colt Leitess

Ann Colt Leitess is the Democratic candidate for State’s Attorney.


Kathy Rogers

Kathy Rogers has lived in Anne Arundel County since 1970. She and her husband have three grown children. She was very fortunate to raise them in the community where she grew up, to be a volunteer at their schools and to coach their sports teams. Anne Arundel County is an important part of who she is today.

Her first job after law school was as an assistant state’s attorney here in Anne Arundel County. She went on to serve the citizens of this county for the next 28 years. She successfully prosecuted some of the most dangerous rapists, child abusers and murderers to ever walk our streets. When she left the office in 2015, she was the deputy state’s attorney; her duties included supervising more than 100 employees. Although she had many administrative responsibilities, she continued to prosecute criminal cases because she firmly believes that is the duty and mission of every prosecutor. In her final year in the office, she prosecuted two murder cases; in both cases, the result was a guilty verdict to first-degree murder. She is very proud to say she made our community a safer place for almost three decades.

The state’s attorney’s office should be focused on successful prosecution as a way to make our communities safer. Political partisanship and patronage have no place in the office. The state’s attorney’s office is the last place where ethics should be called into question. She wants to be your next state’s attorney to assure the citizens of this county, who have been her neighbors and friends for the last 50 years, that the state’s attorney’s office will serve them and fight for victims of crime, making our county safer for your family and mine.



Clerk of the Court


Doug Arnold

Twenty-seven years ago, Doug Arnold walked through the doors of the courthouse for the first time as an employee. He discovered within the courthouse walls a unique culture built upon a shared commitment to the mission of justice. The driver of that culture is a passion for public service and a fair, equitable and accessible justice system for the citizens and communities of Anne Arundel County.

That passion is a driving force for him in serving as a member of the office, and it’s why he is seeking the elected position of clerk of the court. He offers court experience, judicial knowledge and workplace commitment to continuing the dedication to service that has been the hallmark of our current clerk, Bob Duckworth. Arnold is honored to have his support as he runs to be the next elected clerk.

Arnold is focusing on three priorities: supporting families, growing businesses and making communities safe.

The courthouse supports families in wonderful ways like adoptions, wedding ceremonies and even accepting passport applications.

The office is serving Anne Arundel County’s thriving business community through the issuance of business licenses and accurate and efficient recording of deeds and land records documents.

Arnold is committed to safe communities through issuing warrants and committing guilty parties to jail the same day ordered by the court and protecting the rights of crime victims by ensuring that victims obtain notification and restitution where possible. The courthouse leads the way in increasing its use of IT and data management to better its services, accuracy and support for victims of crime.

Meeting the people of our county and sharing the passion for justice is the aim of Arnold’s campaign. These priorities represent the values that give purpose to his judicial mission.

He will serve you with fair, equitable and accessible justice.


Bonnie Shepke

Bonnie Shepke is a Republican candidate for clerk of the court.


Scott Poyer

Scott Poyer has experience with criminal courts, civil courts and administrative law judges from his 30 years in law enforcement and public safety. He spent 20 years as a Coast Guard officer fighting the ongoing battle against illegal drugs, where he seized multi-ton drug shipments and worked with the U.S Attorney’s Office and federal criminal courts to convict the responsible drug traffickers. After he left active duty in the Coast Guard, Poyer continued his dedication to protecting the public by joining the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), enforcing transportation safety laws, where he worked with civil courts and administrative law judges. As a senior executive with the federal government, he was responsible for operations similar to the clerk’s office but on a larger scale, and he earned many awards for innovation. Poyer has a bachelor’s degree from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and master’s degrees from American College and George Mason University. Poyer has lived in Annapolis with his wife, Judy, for nearly 25 years. Their two children graduated from Annapolis High School. He is active in his community association, and he volunteers as a reserve officer with the Anne Arundel County Police Department. The clerk’s office faces many challenges that need to be addressed, including a backlog of 11,000 unserved warrants issued by the judiciary, which have languished for years. If elected, Poyer will partner with all the affected offices for a sustained effort to clear the backlog and bring new energy as well as a fresh perspective to the office.


Register of Wills


Joseph Janosky

Joseph Janosky is the Democratic candidate for register of wills.


Lauren Parker

As a lifelong resident of Anne Arundel County, Lauren Parker attended public school here, graduated from Anne Arundel Community College, University of Baltimore and University of Baltimore Law School.

As a local attorney, she drafted wills and trusts for 25 years and was the law firm managing attorney for the last five of those years. She needed no on-the-job training. As this county’s register of wills since 2006, she has achieved three perfect independent state legislative audits and earned a public satisfaction rating of 99.29 percent and attorney satisfaction rating of 95.73 percent. The staff and she created a public website for case info and an online ordering system for case documents and publications. They instituted public credit card capability. They also created an in-house intranet to accelerate their workflow and help the public gather information quickly.

Under her guidance, her office provides you with fast, live, personal service in answering the phone and greeting you at the front desk. She has created outreach programs to inform clubs, churches and civic groups regarding wills and estates. She also participates in legal education projects such as law school for the public, lecturing at the Maryland State Bar Association meetings and providing information to the Maryland legislature when requested.

Her priority is maintaining the well-trained, knowledgeable, compassionate, computer-savvy staff, guaranteeing you efficiency and virtually no waiting time. Her office is deep into the transition to a paperless office to save the public storage and office costs. She is working on drafting Maryland rules/statutes for approval by the Maryland legislature for e-filing estate paperwork. This office is her passion and enables her to give back to the citizens of this county for a life here well-lived.


Judge of the Orphans’ Court


Maureen Carr-York

Maureen Carr-York has been a resident of Anne Arundel County for 30 years, and before becoming a judge of the Orphans’ Court, she served the people of the county as an attorney, as a member of the county Board of Education, as president of an umbrella group of 60 community associations and homeowners associations, and as a volunteer in multiple organizations. She has a dual background in health care and the law, and she credits her experience as a registered nurse with helping her understand persons struggling with stress, loss and grief. Her degree in law is from Georgetown University, and she has been a member of the Maryland Bar for 35 years. Her years of experience in trial work enable her to quickly analyze procedural and evidentiary questions as they arise in the Orphans’ Court. Soon after Carr-York became a member of the Orphans’ Court, Mary Ellen Barbera, the chief judge of the Maryland Court of Appeals, appointed her a member of the statewide Conference of Orphans’ Court judges. In that capacity, she works to improve the overall functioning of the Orphans’ Courts and to address legislative issues affecting the courts and the administration of estates. Carr-York has been married for 44 years to Dr. James York, a county orthopedic surgeon, and together they have two adult daughters, Kerry and Christine.


George Holland

George Holland is a Republican candidate for judge of the Orphans’ Court.


Vickie Gipson

Vickie Gipson is a Democratic candidate for judge of the Orphans’ Court.


Torrey Jacobsen

Torrey Jacobsen is a Democratic candidate for judge of the Orphans’ Court.


Nancy Phelps

Nancy Phelps has humbly served as the honorable chief judge of the Orphans’ Court since 1998 and was previously reappointed as chief judge by the Honorable Governor Larry Hogan. Her knowledge and experience in estate, probate matters and a record of professionalism will show why she should be reappointed for this position of judge of the Orphans’ Court of Anne Arundel County.

She previously served as president of the Maryland Association of the Judges of the Orphans Court (MAJOC) and has received numerous citations from the Maryland General Assembly and the delegates and senators for Anne Arundel County. She is also a member of the Conference of Orphans’ Court Judges.

Due to the continuing fluctuations of Maryland estate law, Phelps continues to keep her skills updated by being a participating member of the Conference of Orphans’ Court Judges, which was created in 2003 to act as an advisory body to the chief judge of the Court of Appeals in all matters relating to the Orphans’ court.

She and her husband, the Reverend Frank Phelps, have been happily married since she was a teenager. They reside in Gambrills. Phelps has always had the compassion needed to assist grieving families.

Since 1998, she has applied appropriate Maryland estate laws in order to resolve various disputes. She is dedicated to the work she does and consistently assures that probate matters are dealt with expeditiously, fairly and effectively. She takes the duties and responsibilities of the court seriously and professionally and always tries to have the best interest of all citizens within Anne Arundel County.


Alan Rzepkowski

Alan Rzepkowski was elected a judge of the Orphans’ Court in 2014, and it has been his priority to maintain a high level of fairness and strong ethics in the decision-making that is required of a judge. This elected office has the function of administering the estate of deceased persons and the probate of wills, and he is seeking re-election so he can continue to serve the citizens of Anne Arundel County.

His background is as a self-employed small-business owner and lifelong resident of Anne Arundel County. He has also served as a student mentor with Maryland Future Business Leaders of America for 25 years and serves as vice chair of its board of directors and chair of its foundation. Prior to his 2014 election as a judge of the Orphans’ Court, he served five years as chairman of the Anne Arundel Republican Party as part of his eight years on the central committee. This combination of business and leadership experience, as well as community service involvement, is an excellent match for serving as a judge of the Orphans’ Court.

He works closely with Judge Carr-York and Judge Phelps, and their Orphans’ Court team has worked to adjudicate estates in an efficient and compassionate manner. He asks that you please vote to return him, Judge Carr-York and Judge Phelps to the Orphans’ Court.




Ron Bateman

As your sheriff, Ron Bateman has experience that far exceeds the other candidates as it relates to managing a $9 million budget, which he has never exceeded in three terms, managing 115 sworn and civilian employees, and having 38 consecutive years in law enforcement in a wide variety of assignments. Having served as the chief deputy under the former sheriff for three years and serving as the sheriff for the past 12 years allows him to continue in the position with no learning curve.

Since in office, his team has compiled the most comprehensive approach to serving arrest warrants in the entire state. He has spearheaded innovative and cost-efficient legislation regarding the service of arrest warrants. The warrant/tax refund intercept law was his idea and it withholds a person’s state tax refund until his or her warrant has been satisfied. This law started first as a pilot in our county and has since been enacted as a statewide law and has been touted as a huge success. It is by far the most efficient, effective and safest way to serve arrest warrants.

His newest idea has been pitched to the chief judge of all Maryland district courts. The idea focuses on reducing failure-to-appear arrest warrants, which compile the largest number of warrants received by the Anne Arundel County Sheriff's Office. Reducing minor FTA warrants is critical when managing the workload and setting day-to-day priorities for the understaffed, overworked arrest warrant deputies. The premise behind his idea is to text people on their cellphones, reminding them of their scheduled court date, time and location, similar to what is done from medical and dental offices. He believes this will drastically reduce the number of minor FTA warrants that currently constitute 70 percent of all warrants on hand. This service will save courts and the sheriff’s office considerable time and money.

Bateman is looking forward to seeing the results of his newest approach to reducing warrants. After all, his focus has and always will be carrying out the mission of the sheriff’s office efficiently and effectively, with safety of the citizens being his No. 1 priority.


Jim Fredericks

Jim Fredericks is running for sheriff to restore public trust to the office and put in place the modern law-enforcement practices needed to address public safety issues facing the Anne Arundel County Sheriff’s Office. Fredericks is a current, active commander in the county police department with 26 years of experience, primarily in supervision, management and administration. There are two significant issues facing the sheriff’s office: nearly 12,000 unserved warrants in the county, and circuit court security that is not up to post-9/11 standards. These will be his top priorities as sheriff, and he has managed programs, already used in modern law enforcement, that will stem the tide of increasing warrants and make the courthouse a safer place for citizens.

His command experience includes homeland security and intelligence, corruption investigations, emergency preparedness, personnel (hiring and recruitment), budget, purchasing, technology and media relations. Fredericks has managed millions of budget dollars, and he is the former assistant commander of the Eastern District Police Station, which is roughly the size of the current sheriff’s office.

Fredericks is a Republican who supports the Second Amendment and the ability for law-abiding Marylanders to carry firearms. He strongly supports the 287G immigration plan to screen detention center inmates for immigration status, and he will vehemently oppose attempts by lawmakers to turn Maryland into a sanctuary state. He believes in term limits for public officials, and he strongly supports Governor Hogan’s efforts to enact legislation to restore trust in elected office through additional measures of accountability. Public officials must be accountable for their actions, and he will be a sheriff who citizens can trust. He is the only lifelong Anne Arundel County Republican running for sheriff in the June 26 primary election, and he asks for your support and your vote.


Damon Ostis

Damon Ostis is a Republican candidate for sheriff.


Beth Smith

Beth Smith is a retired lieutenant from the Anne Arundel County Sheriff’s Office. She now manages a business that specializes in resolving landlord/tenant issues and is the security liaison for the Maryland Renaissance Festival.

Smith’s lifetime of service to our nation and community has been highlighted with leadership, duty, honor and excellence. She has received the highest levels of success both in the public and private sectors.

Smith began her career as a military police officer in the United States Army, rising to the rank of sergeant in less than 21 months. She graduated first in her class from the Federal Bureau of Prisoners in Glynco, Georgia. She served as the guard commander of the Installation Detention Facility, which housed up to 200 inmates, while supervising upward of 10 military police officers. Smith has received numerous letters of accommodation decorations and has been honored twice as the Battalion Soldier of the Month. In addition, Smith served as president of the Non-Commissioned Officers Association.

After leaving the Army, Smith chose to become a deputy sheriff with Anne Arundel County. She graduated second in her class from the Baltimore City Police Academy and embarked on her 13-year career. During this time, she worked all units within the office, ultimately returning to each as a supervisor. It was at her initiative that the first K-9 unit and supervised children’s visitation program was created. Smith proved her leadership skills by moving through the ranks, becoming the first woman ever to be promoted to the rank of lieutenant in the history of the office. Additionally, she was honored to receive the John Paul Jones Award for Excellence in Law Enforcement Leadership presented by the United States Navy.

Smith continues to serve her community as a Rotarian, having once served as the vice president of the Lake Shore-Severna Park Rotary.

For more information, log onto To contact her, call 443-333-6613 or email


James Williams

James Williams is running for sheriff of Anne Arundel County. He has been a county resident for more than 15 years, living in Lothian with his wife, Diana, and their two dogs. He has one daughter who decided to follow in her father’s footsteps and is now a deputy with another local sheriff’s office.

Williams began his public safety career in 1990 with the Montgomery County Department of Corrections. He left corrections to join the Prince George’s County Police Department, where he graduated from the academy in 1992. During his 24 years with the police department, he had a long and illustrious career. During his service with the department, he served in several demanding units as a patrol officer, as a detective and, after rising through the ranks to captain, as a command officer. His assignments included the assistant commander of a very busy patrol district; a commander in Internal Affairs Division, where they investigated criminal allegations against officers; and command positions with several investigation units, where he had the responsibility of managing a $2 million federal grant budget.

Williams retired from the police department in 2016 and joined the Anne Arundel County Sheriff’s Office, where he is still employed. While at the sheriff's office, he has worked in the Civil Processing Unit, Courthouse Security and the Detention Command Center. He had intended for this to be his retirement job, but he soon realized he wasn’t ready for a retirement job. He has experience in leadership, management and administration with a large police agency and experience with the current daily operations of the Anne Arundel County Sheriff's Office. This experience, combined with a desire to improve the sheriff's office, makes him the best candidate for sheriff.


Board of Education


Vincent Goldsmith

Vincent Goldsmith is a candidate for the Board of Education.


Dana Schallheim

The opportunity to advocate on behalf of our children and be a voice for the Anne Arundel County Public Schools community is what drew Dana Schallheim to run for the Board of Education. Having the ability to develop and uphold policies that affect more than 80,000 students and 6,600 teachers is both an awesome and weighty responsibility and not something she takes lightly. Having never viewed herself as a politician or political candidate, she also views serving on the board not as a stepping stone or resume piece but as an unparalleled opportunity to effect real change and positively impact the lives of thousands of children.

For more than 30 years, Schallheim has been volunteering for organizations she believes in and advocating on behalf of children and underserved populations. Volunteering and advocacy work has always fed her soul, and some highlights of her volunteer career include being named the ACLU of Mississippi’s Volunteer of the Year and leading a campaign that raised $80,000 through the Children’s Organ Transplant Association. She currently volunteers regularly at her daughter’s public elementary school.

She believes in our teachers and staff and will fight for our students – all our students. Never afraid of a challenge or lacking the persistence and dedication to be successful, she will serve with enthusiasm and integrity, and she will bring fiscal oversight and accountability back to the board. Additionally, as an at-home mom, she has the time to devote in order to be an effective member of the board.

A new voice and fresh perspective is exactly what the board needs and the void she hopes to fill. For more information about who she is and what she stands for, visit or


U.S. Congress


Dave Bishop

Dave Bishop is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran with 14 years of experience in small-business management. He lives in Arnold with his wife and two sons. Over the past six years, Bishop has actively volunteered for service positions at his church in Arnold, which he has attended since he was 5 years old. He graduated from Severna Park High School in 1999 and has lived in the area all of his life except for his time in the service. Most of Bishop’s life has been surrounded by patriotism, having many Marines in the family and other military influences throughout life.

With a Bachelor of Science from Campbell University in government and social sciences, Bishop has given most of his spare time to studying American government, the Constitution and how it can best interact with the diversity of citizens across the nation. His time in small businesses has been spread across several industries, ranging from hospitality to environmental services to construction to office installation and design to business consulting, all of which have provided valuable lessons about business, communities and individuals.

As for other personal interests, Bishop would prefer to be outdoors playing baseball, boating and crabbing when he is not watching movies, gaming or reading “Star Wars.”

Bishop’s goals are to help the country recognize liberty, personal responsibility and limited government as primary values again, as well as shift the power from the corporations back to the people. After that, he hopes to go back into small-business management or possibly into education. He wants the ability to succeed without burdensome federal regulations created by huge corporations trying to block competition. He has signed the term limits pledge to support three terms in the House and two in the Senate.


Anthony Brown

Anthony Brown is the Democratic candidate for U.S. Congress.



William Devine

William Devine is a Republican candidate for U.S. Congress.


George McDermott

George McDermott is running for Maryland’s 4th congressional district on the Republican ticket. His purpose for running is to educate constituents and his fellow Americans as to the issues that the current administration and elected officials refused to address. He is running on a platform of judicial accountability and government anticorruption, which is undermining the integrity of our nation as a world leader the 21st century.

He believes change can only come to our political and judicial system from within. As a candidate, one must challenge alleged authority of those who would sell out their position as public servants and their public office to lobbyists and special interest groups whose policies are not in the best interest of the future of this great nation. As one who considers himself a moderate, he believes we must all be governed by one law, by one Constitution, as our Founding Fathers had intended.

George McDermott’s history is posted


State Delegate


Brian Chisholm

Brian Chisholm is running for the House of Delegates in District 31B. He has been blessed throughout his life with close relationships among family, community leaders, friends from all walks of life, teachers, coaches, small-business owners, coworkers, veterans and public service members here in Anne Arundel County. He has learned much from all of them, but most importantly, he has learned that all people are truly a miracle with unimaginable power and potential, but they must first have freedom. Thus, he is deeply concerned that with each calendar year, legislative session and law passed, people are slowly eroding away at their basic freedoms, liberties and future. People far too often imprudently yield to an ever-expanding government with false hopes it will provide them with more security, prosperity and happiness. Chisholm believes this mentality can lead to the destruction of ambition, motivation and the self-reliance all people need to positively fulfill their destiny. He is running to protect people’s basic freedoms and promote a limited government that recognizes the power of the individual to achieve the greatness that affords all of us better opportunities. He has the highest respect for the role of government to provide safety and security to all of its citizens and communities, maintain and develop our infrastructure, and oversee all duties entrusted to it that cannot be competitively realized in the private sector. He believes we need to do away with career politicians who become intoxicated with power and become disconnected from those they represent with tremendous potential to abuse their position of influence. As your delegate, he wants to work with you and with great energy on a shared vision of freedom, peace, prosperity and a limited but effective and efficient government that serves the people and not the other way around.


Harry Freeman

Harry Freeman was born in Miami, Florida, to a mother from Mexico City, Mexico, and a father from New York. He was raised in a bilingual, single-income home with his older sister and younger brother. His dad, Michael, a public high school special education teacher (retired) and Vietnam veteran, gave him everything he needed to understand the true meaning of an education and service to our nation. Elsie, his mom, provided the generosity of spirit and taught him not to sweat the small stuff. Of all the memories of his childhood, his proudest memory is helping his mom study for her U.S. citizenship exam. When he was 11 years old, in June 1996, he saw his mom become an American citizen.

After college, he enlisted in the United States Army. After serving across the country and overseas, he came to Maryland in 2013 to provide military intelligence support to the National Security Agency. Upon his arrival to Fort Meade, he was struck with a sense of home. The opportunities, environment, history and people led him to plant his roots in Pasadena, where he and his son call home.

He graduated from college with a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of South Florida. Currently, he is a Department of Defense Management and Acquisition analyst for IPKeys Technologies and graduating from the University of Maryland University College with his Master of Science degree in intelligence management.

Freeman has a civic duty and a parental duty to make his community and state the best it can be. He knows the kind of home, community and state he wants his son to inherit. The Maryland he wants people to benefit from is not a figment of the imagination but a reality within reach. This is why he is asking for your vote.


Nic Kipke

Nic Kipke was first elected to the House of Delegates in 2006 when he was 26 years old and then re-elected in 2010 and 2014. During this time, he has become one of Maryland’s most influential legislators, with a reputation for effective conservative leadership. He serves on the health and government operations committee, which largely handles Maryland health care law. In 2010, he was selected to be the ranking member on the committee, and he continues to play an integral role in addressing critical issues such as addressing the high cost of health insurance, the opioid epidemic and expanding access to mental health services. In 2013, he was elected as the chairman of the Anne Arundel County Delegation and later that year was selected by his Republican peers to become the minority leader, which makes him the highest-ranking Republican in the House of Delegates. In this role, he has become Governor Hogan’s strongest legislative ally.

This year, he received the highest honor awarded to a member of the House of Delegates, the Casper Taylor Award, given once annually “for steadfast commitment to public service and the integrity of the House of Delegates.” In 2017, he was recognized on the “Top 40 Marylander Professionals Successful by 40” list. He is a fellow of the Public Policy Conflict Resolution Fellowship established by Center for Dispute Resolution at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law (University of Maryland, Baltimore) and Maryland Judiciary’s Mediation and Conflict Resolution Office. He has received legislative honors from many respected organizations, including the Humane Society of the United States. This year, he joined the Providence Center as a member of the board.

Some of his legislative accomplishments on record include cutting the cost of a permit fee on replacement wells by half, prohibiting welfare cards from being accepted at Maryland casinos, creating a “pill mill” tip line, pharmaceutical reform initiatives with an emphasis on protecting community pharmacists, reciprocity with other states in offering complimentary hunting licenses for former prisoners of war or disabled veterans, election fraud prevention legislation, as well as several laws aimed at improving access to oral health. He even repealed a state law that has been on the books since 1926, which eliminated a fee on small businesses.

Kipke is a lifelong resident of Anne Arundel County; he lives in Pasadena with his wife, Susannah, and son, James, and daughter, Evelyn. He attended Anne Arundel County Public Schools, graduating from Chesapeake High School. His first job was working at Friendly's in Lakeshore Plaza, where he waited on customers. After a few years there, he became the general manager of a new store in Edgewater. Since 2001, he has worked for Reps & Associates, a factory representation organization, and is the vice president of sales. The firm assists U.S. manufacturers in marketing its products to the restaurant, grocery, hotel, commercial cleaning, retail and health care industries.

When asked why he is seeking re-election, Kipke said, “I want to continue getting things accomplished for our community, helping my neighbors with issues big and small, and to continue the progress we are making with Governor Larry Hogan in office.”


John Leopold

John Leopold has a deep understanding of the Pasadena, Glen Burnie and Severna Park communities and a demonstrated ability to get things done and provide prompt and efficient constituent service. He also has a proven record over three decades of building bipartisan coalitions and enacting legislation of substance, some of which has served as a model for statewide legislation or legislation enacted in other counties (for example, defibrillators at public and semi-public pools, establishment of Homeless Resource Days, panhandling prohibition, radium reduction in residential wells, legislation that saved the Homeowners Property Tax Credit Program and charter school legislation). In the year 2000, he was named the Outstanding Republican Legislator in the Nation by the National Republican Legislators Association "for leadership in the General Assembly and service to his constituents." He has had legislative experience working on disability issues as a member of the National Council on Disability (appointed by President George H.W. Bush) and the Anne Arundel County Commission of Disability Issues (appointed by County Executive Steve Schuh). He has also had experience as the president of the Elizabeth's Landing Community Association, providing insight into the need for legislative improvements to strengthen community association bylaws.


Karen Simpson

Karen Simpson has lived in Maryland all her life.

She is a survivor! She survived domestic violence by her first husband. She and her children are now safe. She survived to become a #MeToo champion for the safety of women and children.

She is the mom of two adult children, Philip and Autumn.

Autumn was diagnosed with Crohn’s when she was 15 years old. She missed two and half years of school. She now lives a normal life with infusion treatments at the hospital every six to seven weeks. The cost is more than $12,000 for each infusion. Simpson is thankful her family has good insurance.

Unfortunately, that is not the case for everyone. No one should go broke because they get sick. Health care must be affordable. None of people’s other rights mean anything if they are too sick to enjoy them.

Simpson is a graduate of Maryland public schools. She believes children deserve a good education in a safe environment. Teachers deserve a fair and equitable pay for the investment they make in children.

Simpson’s family wrestled with the destructive grasp of addiction. Her beloved brother died by suicide at age 23. The wake of dysfunction, addictions and mental illness inspired Simpson to obtain her master's degree in community counseling at Towson University.

The drug epidemic is a mental health and substance-abuse issue. People burdened by addiction and their families need services. Mental health and substance-abuse communities must be given the resources to lead us to recovery.

Karen Simpson is a survivor and a wife, and her husband is a Lutheran pastor. Simpson is a mom. She is a public servant.

She is your neighbor. She wants to work together to be your champion.


David Therrien

David Therrien is a Republican candidate for the House of Delegates.


State Senate


Bryan Simonaire

Bryan Simonaire believes it is an awesome privilege to serve the residents of Pasadena as their state senator.

On a personal note, he has been married for more than 30 years to his college sweetheart, who gave him seven beautiful children. Simonaire was born in Maryland and has resided in Pasadena for the past 45 years.

He earned his Master of Engineering Science degree from Loyola College and sits on the Maryland Cybersecurity Council. When not performing his duties in the Senate, he works full time at one of the largest engineering firms in the state.

Community is very important to him, and he has been involved in hundreds of activities, but let him share just one: He and his son started the annual Young Heroes Essay Contest that highlights positive activities of local youth. To date, they have received more than 6,000 essays from amazing students in the community.

Legislatively, Simonaire has focused on helping people and restoring their voice in Annapolis. He has worked on legislation focused on the following issues: families desiring help with the tragic hit-and-run cases in the area, high rates of veteran suicides, the needs of military members and keeping protestors away from their funerals, lowering property taxes for seniors, improving the quality of the Chesapeake Bay and educational facilities, to name a few.

Simonaire is an engineer at heart, not a politician, and he enjoys identifying problems and working to solve them. In fact, since the past election cycle, he has sponsored and successfully passed more than 30 commonsense legislative initiatives that help constituents.

He has successfully focused on solutions to problems, independent of party. Most people want solutions, not partisan bickering. His objective is to ensure the people have a strong representative who stands up for them independent of party, politics or power plays.


Scott Harman

Scott Harman is the Democratic candidate for state senator.


Judge of the Circuit Court


Claudia Barber

Claudia Barber is the only candidate running for Circuit Court judge with more than 10 years of judicial experience as a D.C. administrative law judge. She was fully vetted by the D.C. Commission on Selection and Tenure through a rigorous vetting process. She received top performance evaluations during her tenure as an administrative law judge. And many of her decisions were affirmed on appeal to D.C.'s highest appellate court. Her former chief administrative law judge highly recommended her for reappointment to a 10-year term.

Barber is passionate about equal justice under the law and recognizes that the legal system was not designed for the economically disadvantaged. She has represented numerous clients pro bono and from the middle class or working poor population. Prior to becoming a judge, Barber practiced law for more than 16 years in Maryland and in the District of Columbia. She conducted many jury and non-jury trials for individual and corporate clients in state and federal courts. Barber is a native Marylander. She earned her bachelor's degree from Goucher College, a master's degree from Johns Hopkins University, and her law degree from the University of Baltimore School of Law on a full scholarship. She previously served as District 4 director of the National Association of Women Judges and past president of the D.C. Association of Administrative Law Judges. In 2018, she worked as a member of the legislative arm of the Anne Arundel County NAACP. Barber resides in West County.


Robert Burton

Robert Burton is a lifelong resident of Anne Arundel County and has more than a decade of experience trying all kinds of cases in every level of the Maryland court system, from administrative through appellate.

A Circuit Court judge should have firsthand knowledge of the issues that affect our local communities, such as zoning and public works, as well as the unique environmental and land use challenges the county faces with more than 500 miles of coastline. Burton has that knowledge.

His extensive background in administrative law also qualifies him for the office of Circuit Court judge, as nearly every appeal from a state or local board, agency or other regulatory body may eventually be heard and decided in the Circuit Court, where a thorough understanding of the procedures and rules that govern how such matters are dealt with can lead to more efficient and effective case management.

Burton has a reputation for fairness and integrity among his peers and takes his oath to uphold the laws and constitution of the state of Maryland very seriously.


Mark Crooks

Judge Mark Crooks was appointed to the Circuit Court in December 2016 following a lengthy peer evaluation and nomination process. He faces six challengers in the primary, none of whom have ever been nominated. For most of his career, Crooks was a state and federal prosecutor (U.S. Attorney’s Office of Maryland) who investigated and tried a broad range of crimes, including human trafficking, sexual assault, child exploitation, drug distribution, corruption and gangs. In 2014, he was honored with the U.S. Attorney’s Award for Excellence in Prosecution of Violent Crimes. Crooks is the only candidate who is a military veteran, having served in the U.S. Navy. He deployed overseas multiple times, including in the Persian Gulf and Kosovo. Crooks is a lifelong public servant committed to Anne Arundel County. Outside of work, he is very active in the community. He and his wife, Carolyn, have been married for 14 years and have three young children. Crooks is active with youth soccer and church, serves as a board member of the Anne Arundel Bar Association, and leads both teen and drug courts.


Annette DeCesaris

Annette DeCesaris is a lifelong Maryland resident and a candidate for Circuit Court judge. She is the best candidate for the position of Circuit Court judge because of her vast and various experiences, including litigation of numerous matters as well as her knowledge of the law and ability to listen to others. She is a firm believer that all members of our community should have fair and equal access to our court system, and she wants to foster such access for the entire community.

DeCesaris has been practicing law in various Maryland jurisdictions in the areas of civil litigation, minor criminal matters and corporate law for almost 20 years.

She graduated with honors from the University of Baltimore Law School in 1997.

Prior to becoming a lawyer, she was a teacher in Prince George's County and a business owner managing day-to-day operations.

She attended undergraduate school at Mount St. Mary's University, and she achieved her master’s degree in public administration from Bowie State University.

She and her husband have raised their children, now adults, in Anne Arundel County.


Kathleen Elmore

Kathleen Elmore has been a resident of Anne Arundel County for the past 48 years. This is her 30th year serving the citizens of Anne Arundel County as an attorney and legal counselor. She has practiced over the years both civil and criminal law, with a concentration in civil and community issues law. She is managing partner of Elmore & Throop P.C., Attorneys at Law. She believes in the rule of law, and that based upon the existing law and the facts of each case, the litigants should have a good idea what the outcome of any trial will be. She believes that a judge’s first priority should be the protection of the citizens, and that all parties and their attorneys should be treated with respect and dignity. She is a member of the St. John the Evangelist parish. She and her husband of 47 years have two children, eight grandchildren and a deep devotion to God, family and country.


Rickey Nelson Jones

The Rev. Rickey Nelson Jones graduated in 1985 from Loyola University in New Orleans, Louisiana, with a bachelor’s degree in both English and political science. He was one of 21 students receiving special recognition from the university for academic excellence during his matriculation. He graduated in 1988 from Howard University Law School in Washington, D.C. He was vice president of his law school class and graduated in the top half of his class.

After working for a law firm and the federal government, he commenced a diverse, multistate law practice more than 25 years ago, handling civil, criminal, administrative and appellate law matters not only in Maryland but also in other states (for example, New York, Louisiana, Ohio, etc.), representing businesses and individuals countrywide. Few attorneys are in the active practice of law in other states because of the malpractice risk. That has never been a deterrent for Jones, and he continues to handle cases inside and outside of Maryland.

Jones’ legal articles have been published nationwide (by the National Bar Association and the American Bar Association), covering topics from criminal law to immigration, and he has served as a panelist multiple times on continuing legal education seminars at bar conferences. He is licensed in several courts around the country, including the United States Supreme Court.

Jones is also an active pastor of a church. He leads parishioners in feeding the hungry and homeless every month, and he and his wife have joyously mentored elementary school children in Maryland public schools. He has shown love for people from all communities and will bring a true sense of fairness for all to the bench if elected.

Finally, Jones has been married to the same woman, faithfully, for more than three decades and they have one son.


Nevin Young

Nevin Young is a lawyer who has practiced in Annapolis since 2005. He is a graduate of St. John's College and the George Washington University Law School. He specializes in civil litigation. He was also a candidate for mayor of Annapolis in 2017. His primary focus is to be a fair and impartial judge who applies the law carefully and correctly — this is the primary focus that any judge should have.

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