Archives of Maryland
(Biographical Series)

Verna L. Jones-Rodwell
MSA SC 3520-2779


Born in Baltimore, Maryland, November 27, 1955.  Attended University of Maryland College Park, B.A. (urban studies & community organization), 1978; Baruch College, City University of New York, M.P.A., 1987; Senior Executives in State and Local Government, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, certificate, 2005. National Urban Rural Fellowship, 1986. Married to Gary Rodwell.

General Assembly:
Member of Senate, District 44, Baltimore City, January 8, 2003-January 14, 2015. Democrat. Deputy Majority Whip, 2014-15. Member, Budget and Taxation Committee, 2003-15 (chair, pensions subcommittee, 2011-15; vice-chair, public safety, transportation & environment subcommittee, 2008-10, member, 2003-15); Joint Committee on Children, Youth, and Families, 2003-15; Joint Committee on Federal Relations, 2003-15; Special Committee on Substance Abuse, 2003-15. Chair, Joint Committee on the Management of Public Funds, 2007-15. Chair, Special Joint Committee on Pensions, 2011-15 (member, 2003). Member, Joint Audit Committee, 2011-15 (chair, 2008-10). Member, Joint Committee on the Selection of the State Treasurer, 2011. Senate Chair, Baltimore City Delegation, 2011-15. Chair, Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland (formerly Maryland Legislative Black Caucus), 2006-08 (member, 1999-2015; 1st vice-chair, 2004-06). 2nd Vice-President, Women Legislators of Maryland, 2013-15 (member, 1999-2015; executive board, 2003-04; secretary, 2011-13). Member, National Conference of State Legislatures (executive committee, 2007-15; labor & economic development committee, 2007-15, vice-chair, 2007-08; environment committee; vice-chair, economic development, trade & cultural affairs committee, 2002-07); Southern Legislative Conference (intergovernmental affairs committee, 2002-03; economic development, transportation & cultural affairs committee, 2008-15). Chair, Economic Development Committee, National Organization of Black Elected Legislators, 2007-15.

Member of House of Delegates, January 13, 1999 to January 8, 2003. Member, Appropriations Committee, 1999-2003 (education & economic development subcommittee, 1999-2003; oversight committee on pensions, 1999-2003; oversight committee on program open space & agricultural land preservation, 1999-2003). Member, Liaison Work Group, Baltimore City Delegation. 2nd Vice-Chair, Maryland Legislative Black Caucus, 2002-04 (member, 1999-2015; chair, economic development committee, 2000-15; member, education committee, 2000-15, redistricting committee, 2000-01; historically black colleges & universities committee, 2001-15).

Private Career and Other Public Service:
Member, Commission on Education Finance, Equity, and Excellence, 1999-2000; Joseph Fund Board, 1999-2001; International Affairs Committee, Council of State Governments, 1999-2002; Transit Policy Panel, 2000; Maryland Competitive Advantage Financing Fund Work Group, 2000-01; Advisory Board, University of Maryland School of Social Work, 2002-; Governor's Commission on Minority Business Enterprise Reform, 2003 (chair, access to capital committee). Co-Chair, Task Force on Lending Equity within Financial Institutions Providing State Depository Services, 2004-05. Member, Task Force to Study Identity Theft, 2005-07; Maryland Business Tax Reform Commission, 2008-10. Co-Chair, Task Force to Study Prison Violence in Maryland, 2008-11. Member, State Center Executive Committee, 2009-; Alzheimer's Work Group, Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, 2010; Task Force on Prisoner Re-Entry, 2010-12; Maryland Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Commission, 2012; Cultural Competency Work Group, Maryland Health Quality and Cost Council, 2012-; Virginia I. Jones Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Council, 2013-.

Special Assistant to City Manager, Berkeley, California, 1986-87. Director of Local and Regional Programs, Coordinator of Empowerment Zone/Enterprise Communities Initiative and Director of Market Development, Development Training Institute, 1987-97. Founder and president, Collaborative Solutions, 1998-. Chair, Maryland Public Policy Committee, National Black Women's Health Project, 1990-96. Board of Directors, Druid Heights Community Development Corporation, 1993-2000. President, Women Behind the Community, Inc., 1994-96. Board of Directors, Flemming Fellowship Center for Policy Alternatives, 1999; Westside Renaissance, Inc., 1999-; Alzheimer's Association of Greater Maryland, 2001-09; Baltimore Heritage, Inc., 2001-. President and Founder, Community Building Network, 2002-. Board of Directors, Martha's Place, 2004-. Delegate, Democratic Party National Convention, 2008. Member, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. Verda F. Welcome Award, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., 2001. Henry Toll Fellowship, Council of State Governments, 2003. Award of Excellence, Maryland Women for Responsible Government, 2003. Living Women History Makers' Award, National Association of Negro Business and Professional Women's Clubs, Inc., 2004. Maryland's Top 100 Women, Daily Record, 2005, 2008, 2011 (Circle of Excellence). Dedicated Service Award, Woman Power, Inc., 2006. Helen S. Schulze Award for the Advancement of Alzheimer's Research, Alzheimer's Association, 2007. Certificate of Appreciation, Maryland Municipal League, 2008. Member, Payne Memorial African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church.

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