PoliticsWilliam J. Ford

Former Obama Admin Official John King to Seek Bid for Maryland Governor

Former U.S. Education Secretary John King Jr. wants to incorporate equity, leadership and commitment into every policy as he seeks the Democratic nomination for Maryland governor.

King, 46, said in an interview Wednesday those are just three of the attributes of former President Barack Obama he witnessed while serving as the education secretary during Obama’s second term in office.

“A laser-like focus in expanding opportunity that President Obama had and something I would bring [and] try to replicate in the role of governor,” King said. “The commitment to education as a foundation for access not only to economic opportunity, but also participation in our democracy.”

**FILE** John B. King Jr. (left) served as education secretary under former President Barack Obama. (Courtesy photo)
**FILE** John B. King Jr. (left) served as education secretary under former President Barack Obama. (Courtesy photo)

King plans to announce his bid next week during a virtual listening session for residents.

Although King worked as an educator and in the federal government, this will be his first run for public office.

King said the state must improve on climate control, environmental justice and boosting job growth.

One project he would propose to bring back would be the Red Line transit project in Baltimore City. Republican Gov. Larry Hogan, whose term expires in January 2023, killed the project and used millions of dollars in state money toward road improvements.

King called that decision by Hogan a “missed opportunity.”

King currently serves as president and CEO of the Education Trust, a nonprofit organization that pushed to close achievement gaps for low-income and minority students. He also founded Strong Future Maryland, a progressive advocacy group that provided testimony to 65 bills during this year’s General Assembly session.

King said faith and hope influence his push to become the state’s first Black governor, especially being that he resides in Silver Spring, about 25 miles away from where his great-grandfather was enslaved in Gaithersburg.

“That’s a reminder to what both is possible in our society, but also of how recent the institution of slavery. It was just three generations ago,” he said.

Education remains a strong focus of King’s, saying it aided him to become a stronger person after the death of his mother when he was 8 years old. At age 12, his father died after suffering from Alzheimer’s. He praised teachers, school counselors and mentors in the public school system in New York City.

King jokingly said, “I’m the first U.S. secretary of education to get kicked out of high school.”

John B. King Jr. with his wife, their two daughters and dog Max outside their Silver Spring, Maryland, home (Courtesy photo)
John B. King Jr. with his wife, their two daughters and dog Max outside their Silver Spring, Maryland, home (Courtesy photo)

It didn’t stop King from receiving a bachelor’s degree at Harvard University, a law degree from Yale University and a doctorate in education from Teachers College at Columbia University.

King faces a potentially crowded field with state Comptroller Peter Franchot and Ashwani Jain of Montgomery County, another former Obama administration official, already in the running.

Other possible contenders include former Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III, former state Attorney General Douglas Gansler, Baltimore County Executive John “Johnny O” Olszewski, and former Democratic National Committee Chair Tom Perez.

Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly Schulz, who resides in Frederick County, became the first Republican to announce a gubernatorial bid on April 14.

Tags
Show More

William J. Ford – Washington Informer Staff Writer

I decided I wanted to become a better writer while attending Bowie State University and figured that writing for the school newspaper would help. I’m not sure how much it helped, but I enjoyed it so much I decided to keep on doing it, which I still thoroughly enjoy 20 years later. If I weren’t a journalist, I would coach youth basketball. Actually, I still play basketball, or at least try to play, once a week. My kryptonite is peanut butter. What makes me happy – seeing my son and two godchildren grow up. On the other hand, a bad call made by an official during a football or basketball game makes me throw up my hands and scream. Favorite foods include pancakes and scrambled eggs which I could eat 24-7. The strangest thing that’s ever happened to me, or more accurately the most painful, was when I was hit by a car on Lancaster Avenue in Philadelphia. If I had the power or money to change the world, I’d make sure everyone had three meals a day. And while I don’t have a motto or favorite quote, I continue to laugh which keeps me from driving myself crazy. You can reach me several ways: Twitter @jabariwill, Instagram will_iam.ford2281 or e-mail, wford@washingtoninformer.com

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Back to top button

My News Matters to me - Washington Informer Donations

Be a Part of The Washington Informer Legacy

A donation of your choice empowers our journalists to continue the work to better inform, educate and empower you through technology and resources that you use.

Click Here Today to Support Black Press and be a part of the Legacy!

Subscribe today for free and be the first to have news and information delivered directly to your inbox.

Select list(s) to subscribe to


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact
Close

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker