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by Judith Hruz
District 14 Del. Anne Kaiser will step down as chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, a prestigious appointment, to establish and lead a new Public Leadership Institute at the University of Maryland.
Kaiser (D), who has been teaching at the university in the School of Public Policy since 2013, will also expand her teaching role and has been given the responsibility of helping to foster leadership training and growth, especially for historically underserved populations in the region.
“It has been the honor of a lifetime to serve my community in the Maryland House of Delegates,” Kaiser told The Greater Olney News. “Thank you to everyone for your vote, support and suggestions for good public policy. In addition to my legislative achievements, I am also proud of my role in mentoring new delegates and I believe that my new position at the University of Maryland will be an extension of this ethic of recruiting and mentoring the leaders of tomorrow.”
Kaiser will serve out her current term as delegate, which ends at noon on Jan. 11, 2023.
But she has until February to decide if she will seek re-election to her District 14 seat.
The District 14 team, which also includes Sen. Craig J. Zucker, Del. Eric Luedtke and Del. Pamela Queen, all Democrats, filed for re-election in May. Kaiser has until Feb. 22 to withdraw her candidacy.
“I will wait and see during the beginning of session if my new role and my role as a delegate — and as a mom to an active toddler — allows me to fulfill my role as delegate long-term,” she said. “I intend to decide by early February.
The upcoming session of the General Assembly will start Jan. 12.
Her District 14 teammates laud her accomplishments.
“We congratulate our good friend Del. Anne Kaiser on this fantastic opportunity at the University of Maryland,” Zucker, Luedtke and Queen said in a statement to The Greater Olney News. “During her tenure as chairman of the House Ways & Means Committee, she helped to shepherd groundbreaking education policy and safeguarded our elections. She led her committee with compassion, inclusiveness and integrity. All of which we know she will bring to her new role. We congratulate her again on this great opportunity,”
After Kaiser made her announcement on Facebook on Oct. 28, many General Assembly colleagues and others commented on her post on social media, thanking and praising what she has done in the House.
“Anne Kaiser has been a fabulous chair to serve with in the House,” said Julie Palakovich Carr (D-Dist. 17) of Rockville. “She’s shepherded through major legislation while personally taking on technical, but unloved, issues like tax sales, and also took the time to mentor us newbies. Thank you, Chair Kaiser, and best wishes for your new endeavor at the U. of Maryland.”
Del. Jheanelle K. Wilkins (D-Dist. 20) of Montgomery County, a member of the Ways and Means Committee, wrote a message on Facebook saying she shadowed Kaiser for a day in Annapolis in 2014, “and she went out of her way to give me a thorough understanding of the session and her work as a legislator.”
In 2017, Wilkins joined the House with Kaiser as chair of the Ways and Means Committee.
“Chair Kaiser has been a trusted colleague who has provided me guidance, encouragement and advice while leading our committee with a deep knowledge of all the broad-reaching issues we cover,” Wilkins wrote. “She has worked hard to make sure that every voice is heard regardless of party. I have always admired her fairness, honesty and trust in her team. She just announced an exciting new role at UMD and that she will step down as chair. It’s hard to imagine our committee without your leadership, but I’m excited for you in your new role Anne — I know you will do great!”
Kaiser has been appointed a full-time clinical professor in the university’s School of Social Policy. In addition to teaching four classes per year, she will also be responsible for helping scope, develop, build and ultimately lead an Institute for Public Leadership at the School of Public Policy.
Since she began teaching at Maryland, she has taught a class titled “Women in Leadership” every fall semester and spring semester. Since last fall, she also teaches a class titled “Public Leaders and Active Citizens.”
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