The executive director of Maryland’s Democratic Party has stepped down, according to a spokesperson for the organization.
Vincent Harrington led organizing efforts for the state’s majority political party for just under a year. Before that, he served as political director for Gov. Wes Moore’s 2022 campaign .
In a news release sent out by the party this week, Harrington said serving “has been the honor of a lifetime” and that he’s proud of what the party has accomplished.
Chairman Ken Ulman commended Harrington’s hard work and dedication and characterized his leadership as “one of infectious passion for this Party and for our great state,” in the statement.
“His presence will be deeply missed not just by me, but by the countless Maryland Democrats who have had the pleasure of getting to know our Executive Director over the past year,” Ulman wrote.
Gov. Wes Moore praised Harrington’s talents and called him an asset to the Democratic Party and the state.
“I thank him for his service to the party, and I look forward to continuing to work with him,” Moore said.
A spokesman for the party said they’ve started search efforts for a new executive director and are accepting applications. According to the party bylaws, the party chairman chooses an executive director and the executive committee approves them.
— Brenda Wintrode
U.S. Senate race updates
Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Angela Alsobrooks reported a hefty fundraising haul for the last three months of 2023, bringing in $1.78 million.
All told, the Prince George’s County executive raised $5 million since getting into the race last spring, hoping to succeed U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin, who opted not to run for reelection in 2024. Her bank balance at the start of the year — looking ahead to the May primary — is $3.1 million, according to her campaign.
Alsobrooks, currently the Prince George’s County executive, also recently opened campaign offices in Upper Marlboro and Silver Spring.
Her chief Democratic rival, U.S. Rep. David Trone, has yet to file his latest fundraising report, which isn’t due until the end of the month. He’s the wealthy co-founder of the retail liquor empire Total Wine & More, and has already lent himself millions to bolster his campaign.
Trone, who has steadily run TV and digital ads for months, put out a new one this week, featuring people reading from U.S. House of Representatives Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries’ endorsement statement.
Even though Democrats are getting all the attention, there are five Republicans who have filed to run in the Senate race. John Teichert, a retired Air Force brigadier general, this week launched a law enforcement coalition featuring multiple county sheriffs pledging their support.
— Pamela Wood
Larry Hogan, retiree
What’s retirement like when your last job was being governor of a state with 6 million people?
If you’re Larry Hogan, it’s a busy life, but with few worries. At least that’s what he told WBAL Radio hosts Bryan Nehman and Clarence Mitchell IV on Friday.
The former Republican governor went on the radio to talk about the presidential race and his support for Nikki Haley. But it was the opening pleasantries that were more revealing than the meat of the conversation.
Nehman asked Hogan, 67, how he’s enjoying his post-public life.
“Well, it’s been terrific,” Hogan said. “I mean, we’ve been extremely busy. Surprisingly, you know, instead of sitting around relaxing and enjoying retirement, I’ve been about as busy as I was as governor — with probably more travel and more speeches and on television more.”
He added: “But I don’t have the real responsibilities that I have to worry about every day. Stuff that keeps me awake at night.”
One responsibility the ex-gov does have to worry about? Shoveling snow.
Hogan noted that he didn’t have to get up early like the morning show hosts, “but I was out shoveling the snow in the driveway. That’s all I’ve got to worry about.”
Hogan, who grew up in Prince George’s County and lived in Edgewater when he was elected governor in 2014, now lives on a 5.9-acre property in Davidsonville.
— Pamela Wood
Hirings and promotions
Moore has appointed Nichelle Johnson as the state government’s first minority business enterprise ombudsman. Johnson, who has been a minority business compliance manager with the state for the past four years, will work with contractors and subcontractors as they work through issues during their contracts, collect data on how well contractors are meeting minority business goals, and assist state agencies.
At the Maryland Department of the Environment, the state has its first assistant secretary for environmental justice, Aneca Y. Atkinson. She most recently worked for the National Audubon Society, directing the organization’s Delaware River Watershed Program. She also previously worked for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
Several members of Moore’s core team got new titles and promotions:
- Pokuaa Owusu-Acheaw, who had been Lt. Gov. Miller’s chief of staff, is now a deputy chief of staff to the governor, working on legislation.
- Kristina Broadie Jeter is now assistant chief of staff for executive operations and protocol. She had been senior director of operations and protocol.
- Mollie Byron, director of intergovernmental affairs, is now also a senior advisor
- Matthew Verghese, director of federal relations, is now also a senior advisor.
— Pamela Wood