Biography

     I am a mother, wife, attorney, volunteer, and public servant. In 2008 I moved to Hyattsville with my now-husband Dave when we bought our first home together. Dave proposed to me on the front steps of our Hyattsville home with a pressed penny machine showing scenes from our neighborhood. I quickly became involved in our new community and worked to bring a community garden to Hyattsville. I ran for the Hyattsville City Council in 2011, campaigning door-to-door while pregnant, and was sworn in to office a couple of months before our daughter, Arcadia, was born. On the Council, my emphasis has been on community building and expanding civic participation.


     I grew up in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. My parents both worked for the state government and they raised me to believe in the principles of citizenship and public service. I moved to the Washington, DC area in 1991, where I studied Classical Humanities and Philosophy at Georgetown University. I spent my junior year in Ireland at the School of Classics at Trinity College, Dublin. After graduation, I moved to Santa Fe, NM, where I received a Master's Degree in Liberal Studies from St. John’s College. From there I moved to Ann Arbor, MI, to study law at the University of Michigan Law School. I loved law school (as I had all previous schooling) and interspersed my practical classes with ones like "Blood Feuds", where we read medieval Icelandic sagas, and "What Makes a Good Life and What Should Government Do About It?" The latter class turned out to be more useful than I could have predicted at the time. I returned to DC in 2000 to start my legal career. In my professional life, I am a practicing attorney at a large law firm in downtown DC, where I supervise teams of attorneys in high-stakes, complex litigation, representing companies and individuals in a full range of state, federal, administrative, and international matters.

     I am an active member of the Hyattsville community. In addition to serving on the City Council, I am the Legislative Co-Chair of the Prince George's Elected Municipal Women and a volunteer for Hyattsville Aging in Place. In recent years I've been the co-captain of a Neighborhood Watch group, a "List Mom" and "Babe in Charge for the neighborhood parents' group, and the Chair of a babysitting co-op. I participate in a variety of other groups, including the Hyattsville Horticultural Society, the Hyattsville Preservation Society, the PG Pool, and the Friends of the Library. I have also been known to post long emails to neighborhood listservs from time to time. I encourage women to run for office and help them do so, graduating from Emerge Maryland (a seven-month training program to increase the political participation of women in elected office) and recently serving as a mentor for "Girls Today, Leaders Tomorrow," a Girl Scouts' Gold Award Project for middle school girls from the DC area.

     In addition to my more formal community involvement, I work hard to be a good neighbor. I help rake leaves and shovel snow. I bring meals to new parents and to neighbors who have suffered tragedies. I walk door to door in the rain and the snow and the sunshine handing out fliers for meetings. I attend countless community events and host others. I look after neighbors' kids. I cat-sit on short notice. I pick people up from the airport. I go out of my way to welcome newcomers to the neighborhood. I speak out when I think something's wrong, even when it doesn't affect me directly, and I hold my tongue when I have good reason to take offense. I forge friendships with people who see the world differently than I do and try to learn from them. In short, I try to be deserving of the similar treatment I've received from my own extraordinary neighbors who have done all of the above (and more) for me.