Prince George’s Political Updates

WASHINGTON INFORMER: Last week, Clinton Trusedale Sr. (D) and Jarryd Hawkins (D) were appointed by the Bowie City Council to fill the expiring terms of Bowie City Council members Ingrid Harrison (D) and Adrian Boafo (D). Truesdale will be the 3rd District Council member and Hawkins will be the At-Large Representative. On Feb. 21, Truesdale and Hawkins will be sworn in to serve at Bowie City Hall.

Hawkins is currently a Senior Associate with High Street Strategies and formerly served as Regional Director for Sen. Ben Cardin (D). Truesdale, the owner of Tight N’ Up Barber Shop, applied for a Council vacancy in February 2019 and his interview during that meeting is publicly available. Trusedale expressed support for business growth and indicated some approval for the Sears redevelopment at Bowie Town Center that would create some housing directly within the shopping center.

In last year’s elections, Harrison and Boafo were elected to the Prince George’s County Council and House of Delegates, respectively. 

During that same meeting, Council members voted for Roxy Ndebumadu (R) to serve as Mayor Pro Tem. In the event the mayor is absent, the pro tem fills in for the Mayor.

Mayor Tim Adams (D), the first Black mayor in Bowie’s history, thanked all of the candidates for their interest in serving, stating that it was an extremely competitive process and that there were “a lot of very amazing people willing to serve.” following interviews for the 26 at-large candidates and 16 District 3 candidates. These meetings were not open to the public nor press. 

Until recent times, Bowie did not have a Black Senator or Mayor. Adams won the mayoral race in 2019, becoming the first Black Mayor in Prince George’s largest town. He recently ran for Comptroller and, although lost the election, won Prince George’s County. Adams is a defense contractor who headquarters his business in Upper Marlboro.

Sen. Ron Watson (D- District 23 ), who first won by defeating longtime Judiciary Chairman Joe Vallario (D), was appointed to replace former Senator Doug Peters (D) and began serving in the Senate in August 2021. Peters is now serving on the University System of Maryland’s Board of Regents.

Watson won a contested Senate primary last year against former School Board member Raahela Ahmed and businesswoman Sylvia Johnson to become the first Black candidate elected to the Senate in the Bowie-based district. Watson is currently serving on the Education, Energy, and the Environment Committee. 

In District 22, Del. Alonzo Washington (D) was appointed to the state Senate after longtime Senator Paul Pinsky (D) was nominated by Governor Wes Moore (D) to lead the Maryland Energy Administration. Washington is the first African American to hold that senate seat. He has been prominent on education issues in the House of Delegates, including a successful push for then-Governor Larry Hogan(R) to distribute additional funding to Prince George’s and Baltimore.

 Once Washington was appointed, his seat became vacant.  Ashanti Martinez (D), who previously ran for the seat two times and has worked with CASA and other advocacy organizations, was appointed to Washington’s seat and awaits confirmation from Governor Moore. Martinez will be the first Afro-Latino to hold a Delegate seat in District 22, and the first openly LGBTQIA+  member of the state legislature from Prince George’s County. Martinez is currently serving as Chief of Staff for County Councilwoman Krystal Oriadha and has been an advocate for the completion of the Purple Line without displacing minority communities.

“I’m excited to bring my lived experiences to the halls of power and be a champion for working families,” Martinez said. “During this unique time, Prince George’s County needs a leader in Annapolis who is willing to think boldly and fight for every member of our community.”

Photo: Ashanti Martinez will be the first Afro-Latino to serve District 22 as Delegate, and the first openly LGBTQ member of the state legislature from Prince George’s County. He will be leaving his current role as chief of staff for County Councilwoman Krystal Oriadha. (Courtesy photo)


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